By Ruth Callanan | 21 June 2018

Sale Agreed?  How To Keep Your House Move Running Smoothly

pkhl-propertyWith activity returning to the Irish property market over the last few years, more and more people are beginning to think about moving house.

Moving house is regarded as one of the most stressful events during a person’s lifetime. Despite the importance of this major life event and the fact that for most people it is the largest financial commitment they will ever make, there is often a degree of confusion over the process of buying or selling a house and what it actually takes to move home.

One of the most common areas of confusion is regarding the term ‘Sale Agreed’ and what it actually means. In this blog we will look at the term Sale Agreed, what it actually means and what you need to do in order to keep things moving smoothly.

What Does Sale Agreed Actually Mean?
Sale Agreed simply means that a prospective buyer of a property has agreed a price to purchase the property from the person selling it. 
What Does Sale Agreed Not Mean?
Sale Agreed does not mean Sold!

The one thing you must remember is that Sale Agreed does not mean you have a legally binding contract to either buy the house you have just made an offer for or to sell your property to the people who have just made you an offer. This is a common misconception and should your ‘Sale Agreed’ fall through this can lead to a lot of heartache and disappointment.

Going ‘Sale Agreed’ is where costs do start to accrue however so bear in mind that most people don’t enter into Sale Agreed lightly and will generally only back out if their searches and/or surveys find something which they think is unacceptable or perhaps too expensive to put right. 

What You Need To Do To Help Things Run Smoothly
If you are selling a house make sure you have all your paperwork up to date. Who currently holds the title deeds? If you have made alterations to the property do you have a copy of your planning approval or any building control documentation? Have you appointed a solicitor who is responsive to your timeframes?

Similarly, if you are buying a house and have been saving the deposit in an account which is locked away for a period of time, will you be able to access the monies in time for completion without incurring significant fees and/ or loss of interest? 

It is also surprising the number of people who will look for a home based on the assumption that they will be able to get a mortgage. This is a risky strategy because on one hand you are setting yourself up for a major disappointment if you find your dream home and can’t raise a mortgage to buy it. You are also wasting the time of the people selling the property who may have taken the property off the market owing to your offer to buy it. Make sure you speak to a financial advisor, mortgage broker or bank to ascertain you borrowing limits before you get too serious about moving house. Some financial institutions may provide you with an “Agreement in Principle” for a particular amount they will lend to you (all other things being equal).

Whether you are buying your first house, downsizing as you approach retirement or trading up to a larger house for your growing family, moving house takes time, patience and a lot of organisation. No matter how bad it may feel during the process, however, it will all be worth it when you pick up the keys and all the heartache and stress melts away. Moving house isn’t always easy but if you take time to draw up a list of the essentials your new home must have versus the nice to haves, map out possible locations and search through the property websites to create a shortlist of the houses you would like to view you will be well on your way to finding your dream home. 

In summary, having found the right house for you and made an offer which the seller will hopefully agree to the Sale Agreed sign can go up. Bear in mind that this is not legally binding on either the seller or the buyer, however, in order to speed up the process and complete the sale as quickly as possible it makes sense to have your mortgage agreement in principle, paperwork in place and an experienced and responsive solicitor in your corner at the earliest possible opportunity. Before you know it you will have the keys, the furniture will be in and the kettle on.

If you would like to discuss how Poe Kiely Hogan Lanigan could assist the sale and/ or purchase of your new house, please get in touch. We have a team of five working in our property department and have the experience to ensure everything goes smoothly during the process.

To speak to one of the team about your own particular property requirements, please click the link below to get in touch.

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Written By Ruth Callanan

Ruth Callanan qualified as a solicitor with Poe Kiely Hogan Lanigan in 2014. She works in the Private Clients Department, and has gained extensive experience in residential and commercial conveyancing and the drafting and implementing of wills.

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