Buying property in Ireland

Buy property in Ireland

Buying a property in Ireland doesn’t have to be as challenging a process as it may look.

Instead of feeling overwhelmed during a lengthy affair, gathering the correct information and choosing the right people to help you during the process can mean all the difference between a bumpy ride and smooth sailing.

Buy property in Ireland

By the time you finally sign the contract for your new home in Ireland, getting the keys could feel like a long-awaited dream.

The process of buying property in Ireland

When you are buying a property in Ireland, you want to be sure that you have all your bases covered and know what you are going into.  Below are key points in the purchasing process of your Irish home and how you can best be prepared for each one.


Your solicitor, also known as a conveyancer, becomes your best friend. They do all the legal work involved in buying or selling property so that you don’t have to.

Conveyancing charges vary between solicitors, so be sure to compare prices and qualifications before deciding which solicitor to hire.

Solicitors are very detailed-oriented, handling the entire legal process, so you don’t have to. The cost will be worth it in the long run.

The Two Methods of buying and selling a house in Ireland

There are two methods of buying and selling a property— which you decide to go with is up to you and what best works with your situation.

Public Auction Sale

The seller (or auctioneer) sets a reserve figure for the property, which is the value the property must reach at the auction.

If you plan to bid on a property, be sure to do three things before the date of the auction:

  1. your solicitor should check the contract for sale for the property
  2. organize a survey of the house
  3. request a formal mortgage approval for the property

When you are successful in your bid, you will pay a deposit and sign the contract for sale.

Private Treaty Sale

You must contact the seller or the seller’s agent to agree on a purchase price.  The same three steps above are followed here, except the first thing you must do is pay a booking deposit once you agree to buy the property.

Remember that the booking deposit is refundable up until the contract for sale is signed.

Checking for fix-ups in the home

A seller doesn’t have to tell you about any property defects or damages. Before you finalize the purchase, you need to check for any damages and potential fix-ups.

Requesting for a structural survey

You can ask your solicitor for good surveyors in the area or you can find one through the SCSI. A surveyor can find issues you might not have seen when you viewed the house previously. For example, if the surveyor finds mold in the house, you can decide if that’s an issue you can fix or not.


Sometimes a surveyor is not enough. A local builder can assess if there is more work to be done or what state the property is in, even from a first glance.


There are electrical issues either you or the surveyor might not have noticed. For example, an electrician might find that the heat isn’t working, preventing a catastrophe you might have encountered in the middle of winter.

Fees involved in buying a house in Ireland

As you close on the house, there are several fees you will encounter, so make sure to include these in your budget when you search for a property in Ireland. The most common are:

  • Value Added Tax (VAT) — the current standard rate is 23% (though it was reduced during COVID-19).
  • Stamp duty — the tax paid for processing the property transaction, charged at a rate of 1% on any property price up to €1 million.
  • Commissioner for Oaths — to legally oversee your purchase, a standard fee of €44 is charged.
  • Search fees — remember the survey fee, as well as the builder and electrician fees if you decide to hire them.
  • Land Registration fees — this cost depends on the property.  It also charges a fee of €40 for the title plans and a fee on all mortgages of €175.


Remember, spend time choosing a house; never rush the process so that you can make sure to purchase the right property.

It is good to keep in mind that until the seller has signed the contract, they can still change their mind.  Always be aware of this during the purchasing process of your new home.

Last but not least, be careful that you don’t let yourself get overwhelmed with fees and costs— search for the loopholes and continuously be evaluating what you can afford and what you need.

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