Know Your Documents to Sell your Property

Abstract of Title

This constitutes a brief history of the transfers of a piece of land, including all claims that could be made against it.
An Abstract of Title is distinguished from an Opinion of Title. While the former states that all of the public record documents concerning the property in question are contained therein, the latter states the professional judgment of the person giving the opinion as to the vesting of the title and other matters concerning the status of the chain of title. Giving of an opinion of title is a practice of law, thus making it unprofessional for a non-attorney to do so.

As-Built Drawings

Drawings prepared after construction that describe the actual construction of a project.

Assessment Notice

Assessment Notice indicates the quarterly assessment rates payable to the local authority. Assessments rates are subject to revision periodically and charged for providing public amenities such as garbage disposal, maintenance of roads, drains and drainage, parks, reading rooms etc.

Blocking-Out Plan

A plan showing a subdivision with all dimensions, covenants, easements, etc. The subdivision survey plan, which legally must be prepared by a Registered Surveyor, finalises the area and dimensions of the proposed lots. All subdivisions will have to be approved by the planning committee of the local authority in the area. The applicant needs to send the subdivision survey plan to the planning division of the local authority together with the perfected application counter signed by the Surveyor. Upon payment of the specified fees by the applicant, a technical officer will make a site visit prior to forwarding the plan to the planning committee for approval.

Building Permit

A license granted by a local authority to construct a specific project on a specific site, under the terms of the permit.

Building Plan

This refers to the view of a building floor, looking down from above, showing its horizontal elements, such as, walls, doors, windows, cabinetry, etc., prepared by a qualified professional and submitted to the local authority for approval in three copies with blue print. Once approved, it is valid for one year and is renewable every year up to the date of completion of construction and until such time Certificate of Conformity (CoC) is issued.

Certificate of Conformity (CoC)

A certificate issued by the local authority confirming that the construction has been completed in conformity with the regulations in place and in accordance with the approved Building Plan and the Building Permit.

Land Registry Extract

Obtaining a Land Registry Extract has become a crucial part during the preparation process for the purchase of a real estate, since the land registry extract enjoys public faith. Due diligence requires that the buyer knows the status of the land registry. Not knowing it can also result in conflicts on the property. The extract must be stamped by the Land Registrar in order to be verified. You can apply for the Land Registry Extract of title of a property you are interested in by filling up an application and paying a nominal fee. Usually a land registry extract can be obtained within a week.

Non-Vesting Certificate

The certificate of confirmation issued by the local authority that all assessments rates have been paid up to date. This also confirms that no vesting order has been served on the property for default in assessment rates.

Power of Attorney

A power of attorney is a document that allows you to appoint a person or organization to handle your affairs while you're unavailable or unable to do so. The person or organization you appoint is referred to as an "Attorney" or "Agent." A Special Power of Attorney authorizes your Agent to act on your behalf in specific situations only. A General Power of Attorney is very broad and provides extensive powers to the person or organization you appoint as your agent. These powers usually include:

   - Handling.-Banking,transactions.
   - Entering.Safety,depositboxes.
   - Buying.and.sellingproperty.
   - Settling claims
   - Entering,into.contracts
   - Exercising.stock.rights
   - Buying,managing.or-selling..Realestate
   - Filing tax returns
   - Handling matters related to government benefits

You also have the option to grant the following additional powers to your Agent: Maintaining and..operating business interests Employing professional assistance

A general power of attorney usually allows your agent to handle all of your affairs during a period of time when you are unable to do so; for example, when you are traveling out of the country or when you are physically unable to handle your affairs.

Street/Building Line Certificate

This certificate confirms whether the property is affected by a proposed road widening or any other reservations. The local authority generally issues a photocopy of the survey plan indicating the approximate position of the Street Line marked in red in case the property is affected by a Street Line. The Building Line is generally measured from the center of the road depending on the width of the roads the property is bounded by. The main purpose of imposing a Building Line is to maintain a reasonable distance between buildings to ensure privacy and sanitation of occupants.

Survey Plan

This refers to a plan prepared by a Licensed Surveyor from field survey data and previous survey plan data according to standards and directions of the Surveyor-General. It is an assessment of property lines to determine the exact extent of land that a homeowner owns. Surveys show any easements or encroachments on a property that is noted on the title of the property. It's important to get a property surveyed after an offer is made to make sure any issues with easements or encroachments are documented on the title and resolved before closing. Make sure that the property you are buying has been approved by the local authority for its purpose of use such as residential, commercial or mixed development.

Tax Receipt

The proof of payment of quarterly assessment rates as indicated in the Assessment Notice.


Title deeds are documents showing ownership as well as rights, obligations or mortgages on the property. Compulsory registration is required in the Land Registry of the relevant area for all properties mortgaged or transferred. The details of rights, obligations, and covenants referred to in deeds will be transferred to the register, describing the property ownership.

Title Report

A written analysis of the status of title to real property, including a property description, names of titleholders and how title is held, encumbrances (mortgages, liens, deeds of trusts, recorded judgments). The history of the title is called an "abstract." Generally a title report is prepared by an attorney who has substantial experience in notarial practice or in a legal firm.


Real estate appraisal, property valuation or land valuation is the practice of developing an opinion of the value of real property, usually its Market Value. The need for appraisals arises from the heterogeneous nature of property as an investment class: no two properties are identical, and all properties differ from each other in their location - which is one of the most important determinants of their value. The absence of a market-based pricing mechanism determines the need for an expert appraisal/valuation of real estate/property. A real estate appraisal is generally performed by a licensed or certified appraiser (in many countries known as a Property Valuer or Land Valuer. If the appraiser's opinion is based on Market Value, then it must also be based on the Highest and Best Use of the real property. For mortgage valuations, the appraisal is most often reported on a standardized form. Appraisals of more complex property (e.g. -- income producing, raw land) are usually reported in a narrative appraisal report.

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