We at D’Arcy & Co, Solicitors, Kildare have a wealth of experience in Property and Conveyancing.

All Property cases are dealt with by Paul D’Arcy, a solicitor with over twenty years of Conveyancing experience.

Common issues in brief

Help to Buy and Timing

Clients who are availing of Help to Buy scheme should bear in mind the following two areas where timing has become an issue in relation to Help to Buy and the amount that can be claimed:-

  1. The Government July Covid stimulus measures created a distinction between contracts signed prior to 23 July 2020 and those signed after. Only those signed after 23 July can avail of the higher amount brought in in July.
  2. The amount that can be claimed under the Help to Buy scheme is limited to the amount of income tax or dirt paid by the applicant over the previous 4 years. This has the effect that an application created in 2020 may provide a smaller amount than one created in 2021.

If you are purchasing property, you should consider the following issues:-

  • Help to Buy Scheme

The Help to Buy (HTB) Scheme is designed to assist first-time buyers of newly built homes with their required deposit. It also applies to once-off self-build homes.

The Help to buy Scheme provides for a refund of income tax and Deposit Interest Retention Tax (DIRT) paid over the previous 4 tax years.

  • Formal Loan Offer

If you are using a mortgage in relation to your purchase, then you will need to have your bank issue a Formal Letter of Offer in relation to property to your solicitor.

Under new rules lenders will now have to revalue the property before drawdown where two months have elapsed since the first valuation. This could result in a reduction in the loan.

  • Structural Survey

If you are purchasing a second-hand property, then the principle of  “let the buyer beware” will  apply to the physical condition of the property.   For this reason, you should have a structural survey of the property carried out before signing contracts.

  • Stamp Duty

The present Stamp Duty rate for residential property is 1% for a purchase price of less than €1 million.

  • Building Energy Rating (BER)

Purchasers must be receive a Building Energy Rating (BER) from a registered assessor for the property they are purchasing. This is usually available from the auctioneer

  • Co-ownership Agreements

In the case of a joint purchase by unmarried persons, consideration should be given to a Co-ownership Agreement setting out arrangements in the case of split.

  • Issues with Items to be left or taken

Please be warned the legal system relating to house purchases is primarily about the actual purchase of the house and the issue of contents is treated as a much smaller issue. Disagreements and crossed wires are common and often legal remedies are not cost effective. So the best attitude to have is that it is up to you to check that every item that should be left is left and every item that should be taken is taken. Dissatisfaction on these issues after completion is often impossible to solve legally.



Do special considerations and difficulties arise for a purchaser where a sale is a distressed sale or a sale by a receiver?

It is often the case that special difficulties arise in the case of such purchases. This is because of a number of factors including – 1. Lack of knowledge and willingness on the part of a receiver or distressed vendor in relation to answering questions about to the property in sale and/or taking responsibility for issues in relation to the property. This can especially cause difficulties where the purchaser is getting a mortgage loan. 2. Receiver contracts and especially receiver contracts in auctions of distressed properties can often include terms that are exceptionally unfair to purchasers regarding issues such as the right to rescind on the part of the vendor and that leave purchasers with much less rights than they might expect. 3. Special difficulties caused by negative equity which means that the clearing of the mortgage can involve complicated correspondence regarding deductions allowed by the owners of the mortgage over the property in sale.

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