If you intend to purchase a commercial property or private lot of land you may want to engage a lawyer to assist with all the necessary legal documentation and safeguard your business interests.
If you are applying for a financing facility to fund the purchase, your bank will assign a lawyer to prepare the security documents.
Step 1: Checking encumbrances
Your assigned lawyer will conduct a land search and a bankruptcy search at the Lands Department. This is to ensure that the property you intend to purchase is free of encumbrances before proceeding with the preparation of legal documents, such as the Sale and Purchase Agreement.
This can be done within a day and will carry a nominal charge of BND$1.
Step 2: Submit Application for Transfer of Land Ownership Online via LARIS
Next your assigned lawyer will need to complete online application forms and submit the required documents via LARIS (Land Application and Registration Information System).
If you intend to purchase a piece of land that has been developed with a building(s), your lawyer will need to submit additional documents for valuation purposes.
The Lands Department will then process your application to obtain approval from the Higher Authority, which will take approximately 2 to 3 months.
Step 3: Pay Stamp Duty Deposit and Sign Memorandum of Transfer
Once application submission has been acknowledged by the Lands Department, applicants can come to the Lands Department counter to pay stamp duty deposit and sign the Memorandum of Transfer (MOT)
any time 3 days after submission acknowledgement.
The amount of stamp duty deposit depends on the type of development:
|Type of development||Amount of deposit|
|Land with building||BND$1000.00|
The actual full stamp duty amount will be calculated and determined by the Valuation Section under Lands Department and if the deposited amount is less than the actual amount, applicant will be notified via SMS to pay the remaining balance once application has been approved.
Applicants who fail to pay stamp duty deposit and sign the MOT within 21 days after their application has been acknowledged by Lands Department will not have their applications processed further.
Step 4: Pay Stamp Duty Balance (if any) and Collect Title Deed
After your application has gone through internal review and approved, the Land Department will register you as the new land owner in the Land Registry and will issue a Title Deed, a legal document that constitutes the ownership of the land.
Upon Lands Department receiving approval from the Higher Authority, your lawyer will be immediately notified via SMS to settle the remaining balance of stamp duty (if any) and collect the Title Deed at the Lands Department.