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TIPS FOR BUYING YOUR HOME RITE OF PASSAGE. Hi, my name is Liam Fitzgerald and I am a solicitor based in Lusk, County Dublin. I have been asked to write a piece on “TIPS FOR BUYING YOUR HOME”. WARNING. Buying a house is a stressful process. The good news is it’s a rite of passage, you will get there. When you decide that you want to buy a house you should shop around to see what bank can offer a loan that suits you. Once you know how much money you can borrow, together with whatever money you have, that will be your budget. Your budget must take into consideration costs associated with buying the house and not just the cost of the house. The typical costs associated with buying a house are (1) stamp duty, (2) Property Registration cost & (3) Solicitor fees / costs. There may be other costs like management fees or apportionment for local property tax, etc. Your solicitor will be able to advise you. In relation to your solicitor you should shop around. The solicitor will be able to give you a guide on the level of costs associated with buying the house. It’s important to remember that the solicitor fees should not be the overall determining factor when choosing a solicitor. It is important that you find a solicitor that you can work with. The solicitor client relationship is important when buying a house. Why is the solicitor client relationship important? This relationship is important because your solicitor is the only person in the transaction who is looking after your interest. This is because the seller and their solicitor are looking after the seller’s interest, the estate agent is employed by the seller thus their obligation is to the seller and the bank want to lend the money as that is how they make their money. Your solicitor is there to protect your best interest. Now that you have found a solicitor that you can work with the hard work begins. The process of buying your home: 1 You need to start the search for the house that’s right for you. 2 When you find the right house, you make an offer for the property to the estate agent. 3 Don’t be too disheartened if your offer is not accepted or if somebody else out bids you, this is the way of the world. 4 If the offer is accepted, congratulations, you pay the booking deposit. The booking deposit is refundable if you don’t sign the contract. 5 The contract will issue to your solicitor. 6 Your solicitor will review the title. 7 The loan pack from the bank should also issue to your solicitor around this time. 8 The solicitor will review the terms of the loan / mortgage. 9. If the solicitor is happy with the title and the terms of the loan you can sign the contract and pay the balance of the deposit. 10. You may want to get your own survey done before you sign the contract and pay the balance of the deposit. 11. Once you sign the contract and pay the deposit you are committed and will lose your deposit if you pull out. 12 The seller will then sign the contract. 13. Your solicitor will apply to the bank to drawdown the mortgage funds. 14 When the funds come in your solicitor will send them to the seller solicitor 15 The seller solicitor will release the title documents. 16. The closing searches will be done at this stage. (don’t worry your solicitor will explain this to you). 17. When the searches are done the money will be released to the vendor and the keys will be released to you. 18 Congratulations you have your keys. The list above sounds easy however that whole process can become stressful because you are trying to balance the pace at which the seller wants to move, the pace at which the bank wants to move and the pace at which you can move. Don’t worry it happens to everybody and it is a usual part of the process. Hang in there you will get over the line. Remember it’s a RITE OF PASSAGE This note is an overview and explanation of the general process in buying a house. It is not to be taken as legal advice. Please consult your solicitor for legal advice. Liam R. Fitzgerald Solicitor. WWW.LRF.IE. 3 August 2019.