Forms and documents for selling a home

When you decide to sell your home, you must keep some important documents handy, such as the title deed, building plan, completion and occupancy certificates, among others. While there will be some documents such as the sale deed, which would be created later on when the deal proceeds, it would be beneficial to have the other documents ready, since that would seal your genuine intent to sell the property and the legal status of the property. In the absence of important documents, the buyers might lose interest due to a perception of the property being entangled in several legal issues.

Whether it is a new property or an old house, you need to take care of the following documents.

Sale deed

A sale deed is a legal document evidencing the sale and transfer of property in favour of the buyer. It encompasses crucial details about both the parties, including their name, age, address and occupation. Property-related information such as carpet area, location, sale amount and date of possession among others are also incorporated in a sale deed. It is especially important to produce this document in case of a resale property since it proves your legal ownership, and the right to sell off the property.

Building plan

A copy of an approved building plan from a competent authority can save you from many future troubles as it specifies whether the property construction is authorised or not. 

Encumbrance certificate

The document verifies that the property is free from legal and monetary liabilities such as a home loan. It comprises in detail the transactions incurred on the property in the past 12 years. To avail the encumbrance certificate, you may apply to the sub registrar’s office.

Completion Certificate

A completion certificate is an attestation from the competent authority that the structure has been constructed in accordance to the rules and regulations of the approved building plan. A completion certificate is essential for various reasons:

  • Provides a sense of security that the property has been constructed as per the approved plan
  • Spares from legal procedures such as eviction and demolishment 
  • Necessary to obtain Occupancy Certificate (OC) without which it is illegal to reside in a property
  • Is a pre-requisite for availing water and electricity connection

Occupancy Certificate

An occupancy certificate is a document issued by a local government agency or planning authority upon the completion of the project. The certificate is proof that the building is complete and fit for possession. 

Tax receipts and utility bills

A copy of payment receipts for property tax, stamp duty and registration, and utility bills paid in the past is essential to ensure that there are no outstanding liabilities. Besides, these receipts are also crucial for the buyer when obtaining a home loan. 

No-Objection Certificate (NOCs)

Before starting the construction, the builder requires NOC from various government departments. In some States, NOCs from at least 19 departments are required, ranging from Pollution Control Board to Fire and Safety. These NOCs are essential at the time of sale to affirm that government approvals are in place.

Succession Certificate (if you are selling an inherited property)

The document is issued by the civil court to the legal heirs of a deceased person. The Succession Certificate establishes your right to sell the property on behalf of the deceased person and collect the proceeds. It is extremely important in cases when the property holder dies intestate, i.e. without a will. A succession certificate involves complete details of the deceased and the legal heir and the list of the debts and assets transferred.

Khata certificate

The certificate encompasses information such as property dimensions, built-up area and tax details, among others. It determines who exactly owns the property and is liable for the tax. The document is utmost crucial for a hassle-free property sale; however, it is valid only in the State of Karnataka.


Patta is a legal document issued in the name of the actual owner of the property. It can be obtained from the Tahsildar’s office and comprises the following details –

  • Name of the district
  • Patta number
  • Name of the owner
  • Survey number and subdivision
  • Area of land and tax details
  • Type of land, i.e. whether it is dry land or wetland

However, Patta is required for property sale only in the State of Tamil Nadu.

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