Property and Conveyancing

Property and Conveyancing
Real estate law deals with commercial, land, property, residential and new home purchases.


There is little room for sentimentality when you purchase commercial property and most people purchase for one of two reasons:

  • to use the property in their business, or
  • as an investment.

Whatever your reasons for buying a commercial property, you have to do your homework. At O’Donnell McKenna we offer a comprehensive commercial property service and we frequently team up with professionals from other disciplines to provide a project approach to transactions as and when required.

To help you along the way, we have compiled a guide to buying a commercial property which is a list of some of the things you should consider before buying commercial property.

If you would like us to help you, or if you would simply like to have a chat to discuss your options about any of the above, please don’t hesitate to contact us.


You must take the same care when buying land as you would when buying a home. If you are building on the land, it is particularly important to ensure that the land has been approved for building, and that the plot is large enough and suitable for the house you plan to build.

You should also check whether there are restrictions on the type of building which may be constructed. In scenic areas, for example, there may be limits on a building’s height. Some plots are unsuitable for building as they’re too steep or require prohibitively expensive foundations. Also check that there aren’t any obstructions such as high-tension electricity lines, water pipes or rights of way which may restrict building. Note that the cost of providing services to a property in a remote rural area can be prohibitive and it must have a reliable water supply. It’s also worth checking whether a plot is in an area where there are high levels of radon gas.

It may be possible to build on agricultural land, but it will depend on whether you’re an EU citizen and whether the land has been zoned for house building. Although there are theoretically no restrictions on EU citizens purchasing land in Ireland, the authorities may insist that farm land is retained as such and not purchased for conversion into residential or commercial property.

If you’re a non-EU citizen, you may need written consent from the Land Commission to buy agricultural land, although obtaining such consent is more or less a formality and it’s rarely, if ever, withheld. You will need to obtain Form NQ1 from the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine. The minimum plot that can be built on is usually 2,000m2 (half an acre) with a frontage of at least 60m (200ft).

Before buying land for building, you should obtain a land registry map to certify that the plot has been properly registered. Ensure also that the purchase contract is dependent on obtaining the necessary planning permission and check for yourself that the correct planning permission is obtained (don’t simply leave it to the builder). If planning permission is flawed, you may have to pay extra to improve the local infrastructure; the property may even need to be demolished!

If you would like us to help you, or if you would simply like to have a chat to discuss your options about any of the above, please don’t hesitate to contact us.


Conveyancing is the legal process for transferring property from seller to purchaser. At O’Donnell McKenna Solicitors we understand that the purchase, or sale of a house or apartment, is often the biggest financial transaction to date in a client’s life.

We’ve put a great deal of thought into understanding what clients are looking for in a conveyancing solicitor, and we have identified a number of key issues:

  1. The solicitor must have the competence and the expertise to carry out the work on behalf of the client.
  2. The solicitor must have experience in dealing with residential property.
  3. The client should be confident that any title deficiencies are spotted and resolved to ensure that there are no problems down the line.
  4. Standards must not be compromised and professional work should not be delegated to junior or unqualified staff.

We guarantee all clients that any conveyancing transaction will be handled by a qualified and experienced solicitor who will personally ensure that the transaction is dealt with professionally and efficiently.

We have compiled a checklist for buying a residential property, which you can download. It’s not exhaustive and there are other things to consider, but you may find it useful in focusing your mind on the type of issues which might crop up, and we’ll be there to help you all along the way.

When you’re ready to buy your property, see our guide on the steps in a conveyancing transaction.

Please contact us for an appointment if you’re buying or selling residential property. We will deal with you professionally, confidentially and efficiently.

New Homes

Thank you for considering O’Donnell McKenna Solicitors for the purchase of your new home. We would be delighted to represent you and we assure you of our best efforts.

If you would like us to help you, or if you would simply like to have a chat to discuss your options, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

Our firm represents clients all over the country and, in particular, we are available for purchases in the following new developments:

Dublin and County Dublin

• 1 Grantham Close, South Circular Road, Dublin 8
• 31-33 Merrion Road, Ballsbridge, Dublin 4
• 46-61 Wellington Road, Templelogue, Dublin 6W
• An Riasc, Farnham Drive, Finglas, Dublin 11
• Aubrey Manor, Rathcoole, South County Dublin
• Belarmine Woods, Stepaside, Dublin 18
• Belltree, Clongriffin, Dublin 13
• Belmont, Stepaside, Dublin 18
• Blackberry Hill, Glenamuck Road, Carrickmines, Dublin 18
• Bracken Park, Carpenterstown, Castleknock, Dublin 15
• Bracken View, Carpenterstown Road, Castleknock, Dublin 15
• Brandon Square – Waterville, Blanchardstown, Dublin 15
• Broadfield Manor, Rathcoole, South County Dublin
• Castle Grange, Clonsilla, Dublin 15
• Castleland Park, Castleland Park Way, Balbriggan, North County Dublin
• Castlemoyne, Balgriffin, Dublin 13
• Clonturk Square, Drumcondra, Dublin 9
• Coill Dubh, Malahide, North County Dublin
• College Square, Wainsfort Manor Drive, Terenure, Dublin 6W
• Colmkille’s Mews, Ballycullen, Dublin 24
• Coopers Wood, Kinsealy, North County Dublin
• Dalriada – Dalriada, Knocklyon, Dublin 16
• Dargan’s Way, Sutton, Dublin 13
• Drury Mills, Saggart, West County Dublin
• Dunard, Swords Road, Malahide, North County Dublin
• Elder Heath – Kiltipper Road, Dublin 24
• Ely Woods at Owendoher Lodge – Ballyboden Road, Rathfarnham, Dublin 16
• Emsworth Park, Kinsealy Lane, Kinsealy, County Dublin
• Fairbrook, Millers Glen, Swords, County Dublin
• Grattan Court East, Mount Street, South City Centre, Dublin 2
• Greenacres, Knocklyon, Dublin 16
• Grosvenor Manor – Grosvenor Place, Rathmines, Dublin 6
• Hamilton Park, Castleknock, Dublin 15
• Hersil Wood, Knocklyon Road, Knocklyon, Dublin 16
• Hillfield, Rathmichael, South County Dublin
• Honeypark, Glenageary, County Dublin
• Howth Road, Raheny, Dublin 5
• Kingsford Cross, Portmarnock, North County Dublin,
• Le Bas Mews, Effra, Rathmines, Dublin 6
• Levmoss Park – The Gallops, Leopardstown, Dublin 18
• Mayeston Hall, St Margaret’s Road, Finglas, Dublin 11
• Mount St Anne’s – Milltown, Dublin 6
• Moy Glas Glade, Moy Glas, Lucan, Dublin 20
• New development – Malahide, County Dublin
• Parkedge, Park Avenue, Clongriffin, Dublin 13
• Parkside, Balgriffin, Dublin 13
• Peyton, Stoney Lane, Rathcoole Village, Dublin
• Richmond Close, Milltown, Dublin 14
• Riversdale, Butterfield Avenue, Rathfarnham, Dublin 14
• Robswall, Malahide, North County Dublin
• Rokeby Park, Lucan, Dublin 20
• Rosefinch, Barnageeragh Cove, Skerries, Dublin
• Royal Canal Park, Ashtown, Dublin 15
• Saggart Court Lodge, Saggart, County Dublin
• Seabrook, Brook Lane, Rush, North County Dublin
• Seascape, Clontarf, Dublin 3
• Seaview Gate, Dublin Road, Shankhill, Dublin
• Sion Hill Road, Drumcondra, Dublin 9
• Sleepy Hollow, Kinsealy Lane, Malahide, North County Dublin
• Spencer Dock, IFSC, Dublin 1
• Station Road, Hansfield, Clonsilla, Dublin 15
• Struan Glen, Enniskerry Road, Kilternan, Dublin 18
• Summerseat Estate, Summerseat, Clonee, Dublin 15
• Tapton – Murphystown Road, Leopardstown, Dublin 18
• Temple Road, Dartry, Dublin 6
• The Cedars, Ridgewood, Swords, North County Dublin
• The Coast, Baldoyle, Dublin 13
• The Elms – Ridgewood, Forest Road, Swords, County Dublin
• The Forge, Lusk, North County Dublin
• The Grove, Goatstown, Dublin 14
• The Paddocks Crescent & Drive, Lucan, Dublin 20
• Thormanby Hill, Thormanby Road, Howth, Dublin 13
• Traverslea Wood, Glenageary, South County Dublin
• Warren Lodge, Dublin Road, Sutton, Dublin 13
• Wellfield, Upper Churchtown Road, Churchtown, Dublin 14
• White Gables, Swords Road, Malahide, North County Dublin
• Woodgate, Ballycullen, Dublin 24

The purchase of a new house differs substantially from the purchase of a second-hand house in that a builder will usually be selling a number of plots of land to different purchasers. It is usual for the builder to enter into agreements with each potential purchaser, one an agreement for the transfer of the site or plot of ground i.e. the contract for sale and the other a building agreement under which the purchaser employs the builder to build a house on the site. The documentation and procedures involved in selling each plot will normally be standardised for each property in the estate.

When a purchaser agrees to purchase a new house, the building itself is not generally completed. The usual Law Society standard contract for sale relates to the proposed sale of a property already in existence and imposes no obligation on the vendor to build anything on the property – it is therefore inadequate to protect a purchaser. What is usually involved in a new house transaction is an agreement to sell the site, together with an agreement to build a house on that site. These two agreements may be in the form of one or two separate contracts.

In the building agreement, the builder undertakes to build and completely finish the house to a certain reasonably high standard, and in accordance with the plans and specifications furnished. The plans generally mean a house plan and site layout plan which contain detailed dimensions of the property and should be checked pre contract. Specifications generally deal with the standard of work, the materials and finishes to be used in the construction of the house.

There is generally a standard loan clause in the building agreement, which provides for written loan approval to issue by a certain date. You need to ensure that if the property is not going to be available for a number of months your loan approval extends beyond the expected completion date.

Something else to be aware of is that lending institutions are now writing into their mortgage document an “all sums due” clause. This clause, results in the mortgagor pledging his or her property to the lending institution, not only for the loan being taken out at that time, but for all indebtedness, which he or she might have to the lending institution at the time, or which her or she may incur into the future. This clause covers potential indebtedness to the lending institution as well as actual indebtedness, including contingent liabilities, which may arise in the future on the strength of an obligation undertaken pursuant to a guarantee. We often advise clients to do their day-to-day banking with a different bank than the one they get their mortgage with.

Please don’t hesitate to contact us.