Property Clinic: Why do I need a new map to sell my apartment?

Your property questions answered

Q. In around 2010 my husband and I purchased an apartment in Dublin as our daughter was attending university. The property was then registered with the Registry of Deeds. We wish to sell the property and we are advised that we must get a map prepared. I am told that Ordnance Survey Ireland maps are not sufficient for this. Can you advise me as to what exactly I require as I have received some different opinions and I'm not sure?

A. In order to sell the apartment you will initially need to obtain your deed with its attached deed map for your solicitor. This is evidence of your title in the apartment. However, if the deed map is considered to be inadequate a new map may be necessary.

For this purpose it will be necessary to engage a chartered geomatics surveyor – a surveyor involved in mapping the built and natural environment – who will liaise with your solicitor and advise on the need or otherwise of a new map. In the event that it is required, it is imperative that the extent of the title, and any easements shown are identical to that as shown on the existing deed map. To confirm this, a Declaration of Identity by the surveyor may be required by your solicitor.

In determining the need for a new map, the surveyor will examine the existing deed map, inspect the apartment and general area within the site curtilage (the land included with the house), and if required, will survey any features required to update the map. The Ordnance Survey map is not suitable for this purpose, especially in the case of multistorey units.


Specific elements

The map required will effectively be a floor plan showing the apartment delineated in red and be of suitable scale to indicate the exclusion of specific elements including load-bearing walls, columns, etc and to show easements including, common areas, bin storage area or car parking area, if applicable. It will show floor and ceiling heights, which define the extent of the title. It will include coordinates and show the apartment in the context of the block of apartments and site curtilage. A general location map may be included.

While it is the purchaser who is obliged to register the title in the Land Registry, the information on the deed map will provide the basis for the map required for registration of title in the Land Registry.

A geomatics surveyor will be aware of the detailed mapping requirements, as set out in the Land Registry's Mapping Guidelines – Mapping Procedure for Registration of Multistorey Developments, which are essential for mapping for the subsequent registration by the purchaser.

The Registry of Deeds, to which you refer, registers the deed, but retains only a Memorial of the deed without a deed map. If you do not already have your deed and deed map it is therefore imperative that you first obtain these in order to commence the process as outlined above.

Patrick Shine is a chartered geomatics surveyor, a chartered civil engineer and a member of SCSI,

Send your queries to or to Property Clinic, The Irish Times, 24-28 Tara Street, Dublin 2. This column is a readers’ service. Advice given is general and individual advice should always be sought.