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The full costs and fees for buying a house

There’s more to buying your first home than simply saving the 10% deposit and paying the movers to carry in furniture.

Here’s a brief guide to the additional expenses and hidden costs of buying a home.

Stamp duty

Stamp duty is not included as part of your mortgage loan by your lender so you’ll need to save it up in addition to your deposit.

Stamp duty is calculated at 1% of the selling price of a residential property up to €1m, and 2% on the balance above. For non-residential property the current rate is 6%.

If you buy a home worth €300,000, you will need to pay stamp duty of €3,000.

For new builds, stamp duty is calculated a bit differently. VAT is charged on new build homes, not on second-hand homes, but you only have to pay stamp duty on the house price not the VAT.

For example, if a new house costs €340,500 (including VAT), this amount is made up of the base price of €300,000 plus 13.5% VAT which is €40,500.

So you will only pay 1% stamp duty on the base price of €300,000, which is €3,000.

When closing a sale, your solicitor will calculate the stamp duty you owe to the Revenue Commissioners.

Download our FTB E-book Legal fees

You'll need a solicitor to look after all the legal aspects of transferring ownership of the property to you.

Costs vary; some solicitors charge a flat fee while others charge a percentage of the house price, usually around 1% or 2%.

Expect to pay in the region of €1,500 to €3,000 plus VAT.

Shop around, get quotes and always confirm whether a price is inclusive of VAT or not.

Surveyor's fees

We would strongly recommend that you find a good surveyor, who will look over the property for you for your own peace of mind.

The seller isn’t obliged to tell you about any defects a property may have, so a surveyor’s report will identify hidden problems, structural issues or planning breaches which could end up costing you more money.

Things like structural defects, subsidence, damp, dry rot or pyrite.

You should budget around €300 plus VAT for a surveyor’s report.

Valuation fees

Before a mortgage lender can lend you your mortgage they need to know that the property you plan to buy has been fairly valued..

A professional valuer who is acceptable to the lender will provide this service, which will cost you around €150 - €250 plus VAT.

Mortgage protection insurance

Lenders require that you take out mortgage protection insurance to cover any outstanding debt on your mortgage should you die before the loan is fully paid off.

Premiums vary depending on your personal circumstances and the value of the mortgage loan.

Buildings insurance

Before you get the keys to your new home, you will need to arrange buildings insurance to protect your property for example in the event of a fire.

Contents insurance, often sold with buildings insurance, covers personal effects and household goods – the things you’ll unpack when you arrive in your new home and will want to cover against theft and damage etc.

Premiums for both buildings and contents insurance vary depending on the condition and location of your home and the value of your possessions.

Renovation & redecoration

Depending on the condition of your home and your personal tastes, you might need to budget for any changes – from total renovation to some redecoration.

A new kitchen and/or bathroom is on many new homebuyer’s to-do lists when they move in while almost everyone will need some new furniture or fittings.

Make a list of what you think you’ll need, decide what your priorities are and make an estimate of what it will cost so you can work out, in advance, the budget you will need.Structural renovations can be considered as part of your mortgage loan

Movers

And, finally, if this is your first home, all your possessions might easily fit in your car but if you are moving, you may have much more stuff. Therefore, you may have to pay a moving company to carry everything into your new home.

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