Buying a New Home

  • 1
    Secure loan approval

    Make arrangements to obtain mortgage approval in principle. Sherry FitzGerald can assist with this process from shopping around the top mortgage lenders to get you the best possible deal, to doing all the paper work for you. To discuss your mortgage requirements, please see the financial services section at

  • 2
    Start shopping around

    Now that you have loan approval in principle you can start looking around for a property that suits your budget. Once you find the right property, you will need to arrange a booking deposit (usually in the form of a cheque or bank draft) and organise a solicitor who will act for you.

  • 3
    Find a solicitor to act on your behalf

    You will need to provide full details of your chosen solicitor including the name of the individual solicitor who will be dealing with the purchase, the name of the firm, address and contact telephone number/s. Your solicitor’s details are required within 48 hours of placing a booking deposit on a property in order that the legal contracts can be issued by the builder’s solicitor and sent to your solicitor. This is the beginning of the legal process.

  • 4
    Inform your mortgage broker that you have placed a booking deposit on a property

    Once you place a deposit on a property, please inform your mortgage broker that you have done so. They will require some general information about the property such as the address, a brief description of the property, the agreed purchase price, and the amount of deposit paid. Your mortgage broker will then begin to process your loan application.

  • 5
    Inform your solicitor to expect a legal contract

    Make sure you advise your solicitor that you have placed a booking deposit on a property and that they are to expect legal contracts. Please keep in close contact with both your mortgage broker and your solicitor to ensure a smooth well informed process by all parties concerned.

  • 6
    Exchange or signing of legal contracts within 21 days from the date of issue

    Once your solicitor receives the contracts they will conduct various enquiries on your behalf. When your solicitor is satisfied with the results of his/her enquiries and your lending institution has sent you a formal offer of a mortgage (loan approval) you will then be in a position to sign contracts/exchange – that is making a binding commitment to purchase the property. You should sign or exchange contracts 21 days from the date they are issued by the builder’s solicitor. On signing/exchange of contracts you will be required to pay the remainder of the contract fee and your solicitor or agent can advise you of the amount due. The exchange of contracts is legally binding and neither party may change their mind from that time on, without incurring further costs. Please note that failure to sign contracts within the 21 day period can lead to the property being resold without further notice.

  • 7
    After Signing – The Construction Period

    After contracts are signed/exchanged there may be a period where there will be no contact from the estate agent or solicitor. This period is when your new home is being constructed and before it is completed. When you place your booking deposit on a property you will be given an indicative date of when your new house will be ready, but please be aware that the date you are given can change and is passed on by us in good faith from the builder. You must allow for delays in the build process and completion dates can NEVER be guaranteed. We can only pass on information we are given by those working on site. You may contact us at any time to ask for an up-date on completion dates and we will contact the site on your behalf.

  • 8
    Completion Notice & Final Inspection

    When your new home is complete your builder’s solicitor will issue your solicitor with a Completion Notice. At this stage you must inform your mortgage broker/lending institution that your new home is ready for “Final Inspection”. Your lending institution will then forward your loan cheque to your solicitor.

  • 9
    Snag List & completing the sale

    Once your solicitor receives the Completion Notice you have approximately 14 days in which to arrange a snag list and close the sale. A snag list is a list drawn up by yourself or a professional builder appointed by you listing any issues within the property that are not to your satisfaction. Once these issues have been addressed you can instruct your solicitor to make a closing date. Closing normally takes place in your solicitor’s office and once the sale is closed you can collect the keys of your new home from the site office.

    The rest is up to you – enjoy!