Selling your house? Get these 4 things sorted first

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Thinking of selling your house? There is a few things you can take care of once you decide you are putting your property on the market.

The first, critical thing is to let your solicitor know that you are putting your house on the market. Your solicitor will then be able to take up the title documents to the house, assuming there is a mortgage on your property, from the lender.

This will ensure a contract can be issued by your solicitor once you go sale agreed and avoid any delays.

You want to strike when the iron is still hot and I have seen sales go pear shaped when the purchasers have been left waiting too long for contracts to issue.

There are three other things you will need to sort out, too.

Planning

Ensure that your planning documents are in order.

If you have carried out any work on the property since you bought it is probable that you will need planning permission for this ‘development’. You will also need a certificate of exemption or certificate of compliance with planning permission from an architect or engineer which will cover this development.

Depending on your circumstances and what has occurred, if anything, from a development perspective there are a number of potential solutions to any planning problems.

NPPR

NPPR refers to non-principal private residence tax. This was in force from 2009 to 2013 inclusive and you will need either a certificate of exemption or a certificate of discharge for the relevant years.

Your local authority will give you the relevant certificate provided you are eligible. The certificate of discharge will be issued when you have paid the tax.

A certificate of exemption can be obtained provided the property was your principal private residence for the relevant years.

You will need to apply to the local authority for this certificate and some local authorities-for example Meath-will look for evidence of having lived in the house for the years 2009 to 2013. The necessary evidence required will be utility bills for those years.

Some local authorities will simply accept a statutory declaration from you setting out the position. You will need, therefore, to check the situation with your local authority.

LPT

LPT is local property tax. You will need to show the LPT record for all years and that the balance is nil for each year, unless you are lucky enough to have some type of exemption. If your property is exempt the LPT record, available online on the LPT website, will state this.

Conclusion

Getting your house in order prior to putting it on the market will help ensure a smooth transaction and reduce the stress and anxiety that many experience in a property transaction.