Key transfer

The key transfer takes place on the transfer date. This is the date buyers, and sellers include in the preliminary purchase agreement when the property is transferred from sellers to buyers.

On the date of the key transfer, the seller is obliged to transfer the property to the buyer, and the buyer is obliged to pay the remaining purchase price. A notary ensures this process. When everything is in order, the buyer gets the keys to the house! If the home has had many owners, changing the locks can't hurt.

It is recommended to only agree with a proposal to have the key transfer after the transfer date. In some scenarios, it is imaginable that you buy a fully furnished house with residents on the transfer date while you want to live there yourself. In that scenario, the residents could proclaim themselves as house renters and be protected by rental law.

When is the key transfer?

When bidding, it is customary to mention your preferred date of relocation. In addition, a line like 'delivery by agreement' is common and valid in opening bids. Gradually, however, you should ensure that at least a deadline is agreed upon.
For example: 'Delivery in consultation, but no later than four months after signing the purchase agreement.'
Later negotiations can work towards a more precise date.

The selling agent sends the signed sale deed to the notary, so he/she is also aware of the intended date. The notary later makes the final appointment for signing and key transfer.

What can you expect from the key transfer?

On the day of the key transfer, buyers and sellers have a signing appointment at a notary's office. There, the 'transport' of the property takes place or the legal transfer of ownership.
Beforehand, buyers will have the opportunity to inspect the property again. It is up to them to use this 'final inspection'; it's not an obligation.
At the notary's office, the provisional sales agreement is transferred to a formal deed of sale. Any reservations in the provisional sales agreement, under which the sale can be annulled, will then lapse. The notary reads out the deeds. This is done in Dutch. An official interpreter must be present if someone is not fluent in Dutch. The notary's office can arrange an interpreter.

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