You’ve purchased a new property, and the time for the handover is approaching. Now is the moment of truth, did you buy the right property ?
Perhaps you’re a bit unsure about what to expect and what you should be cautious about.
Here are some useful tips:
Taking over a pre-owned property doesn’t entail a thorough re-examination to find defects and deficiencies. This should have been assessed during the viewing, and all essential information about the property’s condition should have been provided in the sales materials. You should take possession of the property as agreed upon based on this information.
However, on the take over you will still go through the property with the seller to check:
- That the apartment, including any associated storage units and, if applicable, a garage, is emptied, cleared, and cleaned.
- That all accessories and movable property described in the sales brochure and included in the sale are present.
- Keys should be handed over. Make sure you receive all the keys belonging to the seller, including keys for storage units and the garage.
Most real estate agents prefer that common expenses and other minor costs be settled directly between the seller and the buyer. This might be the case if the handover occurs in the middle of a month, for example. Remember to agree on the specific amount and the method of transferring the money.
Withholding a portion of the payment:
If the property is not adequately cleaned or you discover items that you believe were not included in the agreement regarding fixtures and fittings or the property’s qualities, as the buyer, you have the right to withhold a proportionate amount from the payment. This must be noted on the handover form, and remember that the withheld amount should be commensurate with the cost of rectifying or replacing any defects or deficiencies.
Once the property has been examined, and the electricity meter readings have been recorded jointly, the seller sends the signed handover protocol to the real estate agent. This is often done electronically via mobile devices. The agent will take care of registration and the settlement process for the seller. If there’s a need for withholding by the buyer, this amount is temporarily subtracted from the settlement and held in the agent’s client account. The parties – the seller and the buyer, ideally in cooperation with the agent – must find a resolution to any disagreement. Only when the matter is resolved and confirmed in writing by the buyer will the remaining settlement amount be released to the seller.
Most handovers occur without the need for withholding, but it’s good to be aware of the possibility. Additionally, this arrangement allows the handover to proceed even if there’s a minor dispute.
The absence of the real estate agent:
It’s common for the agent not to be present during the handover. It might seem a bit strange, considering that it’s a day of joy where the final result of the sale materializes. However, they might be preoccupied with new sales assignments…
I have found that some of my clients become a bit uncertain about meeting the seller alone, likely with concerns about potential disagreements. Therefore, I have sometimes accompanied my clients during the handover.
I hope the tips above can be useful and helpful, and if you have any more questions about the handover process, please don’t hesitate to get in touch
Boligdama – Trude Larsen