To find out the market value for your property, you can book a free valuation with an estate agent. Checking the Irish property price register online is a good reference point and will give you an idea of what similar properties in the area have sold for.
CHOOSE AN AGENT
Before you choose your agent, ensure that you are getting value. Don’t be swayed by estate agents offering you the world in terms of property valuations. If an agent says they can get you a price that sounds incredibly high, then it’s probably too good to be true. Once you have agreed the details with your agent, they will have you sign a formal Terms of Engagement and give you a copy.
PREPARE YOUR PROPERTY
Most buyers are happier with a blank canvas and will have limited imagination when it comes to looking at the ‘potential’ of a property! Your agent may have suggestions for improvements you can make to enhance your properties appeal. View your preparation as an opportunity to undertake a de-cluttering exercise, also removing any excess furniture. Try to give the impression of space and light throughout your home as much as possible. First impressions count so make sure your home has kerb appeal. Spruce up the outside as well as the inside. If you have a garden, make sure it’s neat and tidy and that your entrance is welcoming.
MARKETING YOUR PROPERTY
Many estate agents will charge marketing fees on top of their commission. In addition if you request newspaper advertising, this is likely to incur further costs. Over 90% of prospective buyers in Ireland look for property online and this is generally the first port of call for any prospective purchaser. Signage is a very good and inexpensive way of marketing your property.
GET A SOLICITOR:
When you are selling a property, you should hire a solicitor to do the conveyancing which is the legal work involved in buying or selling property. Your solicitor will ensure title, compliance etc. are in order.
ENERGY RATING CERT (BER)
It is a legal requirement to have a Buildings Energy Rating (BER) certificate for your property when you put it up for sale. Your estate agent may have a list of assessors working in the area.
Make sure to prepare your property for viewings so that it’s presented in the best light. With regards to viewing times, be as flexible and accommodating as possible for your potential buyers.
RECEIVE OFFERS & NEGOTIATE
Know your bottom line and don’t ever go below it if you can help it. How you handle this will depend on how close to the asking price the offer is, your timeline to sell and your appetite for a longer negotiation. When buyers start making offers you can either accept one, or stand firm and wait for higher offers.
When you agree to accept a buyer’s offer, the buyer will pay a deposit as a sign of intent. This deposit is refundable if they decide to pull out of the sale before the contract signing. It’s normal at this point for the buyer to arrange a structural survey of the property. If the buyer is borrowing to fund the purchase then their lending institution will also arrange their own valuation.
EXCHANGE OF CONTRACTS
Once everything is in place, your solicitor will ask you to sign unconditional contracts. This is first signed by the buyer and then sent back to your solicitor for counter-signing by you. The buyer then pays the balance of the 10% deposit
which is non-refundable at this stage if they do not complete.
A suitable completion date will be agreed and arranged by your solicitor and the remainder of the money from the sale will be transferred into your solicitor’s account. The sale is formally completed when all the legal documents between buyer and seller have been signed and full ownership has been legally transferred to the buyer.