No Move, No Fee Birmingham Conveyancing Solicitors

Are you are buying or selling your home and need Conveyancing Solicitors in Birmingham? Find out how to get the best No Move, No Fee conveyancing for your Birmingham move.

Birmingham apartments

Conveyancing - Buying a property in Birmingham

With a population of around 1.1m, the city of Birmingham is the second largest and most populous city in the UK, with 6 universities and several major cultural organisations adding to its vibrancy.

According to research carried out for the 2017 Good Growth for Cities index, a wave of regeneration projects - including a city centre facelift - has made this West Midlands city the most rapidly improving city in which to live and work.

Birmingham's economy is forecast to receive a further economic boost through hosting the Commonwealth Games in 2022.

Conveyancing for buyers

The legal work for a homebuyer requires the Birmingham conveyancing solicitor to consider a wide range of issues. Examples of such issues are defective property title (e.g. the title is subject to an estate contract) and a short lease (less than 70 years) affecting the mortgageability of the property.

The solicitor will report their findings back to the buyer, make practical suggestions and register the title in the new owner's name.

The content below examines those types of property that carry additional risk for homebuyers who want conveyancing solicitors in Birmingham.

Your Birmingham conveyancing solicitor must be lender-approved

Before instructing a conveyancing solicitor in Birmingham, it is essential that you check that they are on the approved panel of your chosen lender, whether you are taking out a mortgage from the Co-operative Bank, Accord Mortgages or any other lender.

Most banks and building societies are only prepared to work with a restricted panel of firms. If a conveyancer cannot act for your chosen lender, the lender will probably need a second solicitor firm to complete the legal work.

The home buyer will then have to cover this alternate lawyer's fees, and the conveyancing process can take much longer.

The conveyancing process could be jeopardised by failing to confirm your solicitor's lender panel status.

Our solicitors are approved to act for all banks and other lenders.

Property Searches (Birmingham City Council)

Searches will be applied for by Birmingham conveyancing solicitors to help spot any significant issues that could affect how much your home will be worth.

Banks and building societies also need to see specific searches to be submitted. Required searches will include:

  • Local Authority (LA) search - reveals issues like whether the adjoining road and pavement are publicly maintained
  • Environmental search - describes hazards (such as historic flooding or mining subsidence) within 500m of the property. This search also identifies sites of contaminated land nearby.
  • Drainage & Water search - identifies water mains and sewers. This search also addresses whether the maintenance for these is the owner's responsibility.
  • Chancel repair liability - there is a risk that some Birmingham properties owe a liability to the local parish to pay for church repairs. Insurance can be taken out to protect against this liability.

More specialised searches, such as a radon gas search or a commons registration search, may also be advised in the initial LA and Environmental searches.

The typical processing time for LA searches delivered by Birmingham City Council is 17 weeks, so your lawyer will recommend using quicker personal searches.

Planning permissions

Official Entries (or 'office copies') will also be sourced from the Land Registry by your conveyancing solicitor. This will help to reveal any issues. These issues could include restrictions that limit alterations or a difference between the agent's floorplan and the title plan.

Birmingham City Council Council Tax

Birmingham City Council calculate your council tax based on various criteria such as the size and character of the home and the value of the property. For instance for an average Band E home in Birmingham, the amount of council tax due would be £1,846.

A conveyancing solicitor in Birmingham will inform a purchaser of the home's tax band once they are made aware.

If the property is unoccupied for over 24 months, the owner will pay 150% of the relevant rate. Single person discount reduces the tax due to 75%, which would equal £1,384.

Other discounts and exemptions may also apply, e.g. unoccupied properties undergoing major repairs or where the property is uninhabitable.

Band Birmingham City Council Tax (2018)
A £1,007
B £1,175
C £1,342
D £1,510
E £1,846
F £2,181
G £2,517
H £3,020

Is it possible to reduce my council tax band?

To appeal contact:

Valuation Office Agency
2 Broadway
Broad Street
B15 1BG
West Midlands

A homeowner can apply for their property to be reassessed. A refund may be due if the property is awarded a lower band.

Stamp Duty on Birmingham properties

Steep fines await those who miss the stamp duty payment deadline.

If your home costs more than £125,000 then you will have to pay Stamp Duty Land Tax.

Quittance ensure that the required SDLT1 form is completed accurately and without delay.

See table below for stamp duty examples for properties in Birmingham:

  Average selling price (2018 to date) SDLT
Average price £195,013 £1,400.26
Average price (detached) £400,717 £10,035.85
Average new build £154,133 £582.66

Stamp duty relief for first-time buyers in Birmingham

Since the budget announcement in 2017, if you are a first-time buyer, you only pay stamp duty on property valued at over £300,000 with reduced rates up to £500,000. Following a change in April 2016, a higher SDLT rate of 3% is applied for purchases of additional property. For example, if a property owner bought a second property in Birmingham for the average price of £195,013 the stamp duty would be £9,750.65.

Birmingham conveyancing solicitors will ensure an accurate calculation is made.

Buying a flat? Leasehold conveyancing in Birmingham

New build site

Data suggests that over 100,000 homeowners in England face property leases with unreasonable lease clauses. Numerous technical obstacles may be lying in wait for an uninformed buyer, including spiralling ground rents and freeholds sold without first refusal to leaseholders.

Severe consequences can result from an inexperienced property lawyer's failure to advise you correctly regarding your planned leasehold purchase.

A competent conveyancing solicitor in Birmingham will consider possible leasehold issues, e.g. :

  • checking the lease itself
  • ground rents and service charges
  • dealing with landlords
  • insurance reinstatement covenants

Ensure that you are aware of all the potential issues and costs associated with the lease - Speak to Quittance Conveyancing's leasehold conveyancing solicitors today on 0800 612 0377.

Buying a 'New Build' property in Birmingham?

New build building site

The average value of new build properties in Birmingham is £154,133, (sce: HMLR). 140 new build houses and flats have been bought in Birmingham in 2018 so far.

The legal work for acquiring a new build home can be more involved than any other type of conveyancing. Therefore a conveyancing solicitor in Birmingham needs to be aware of local Birmingham considerations and must look into numerous things, including handling equity loan schemes and verifying rights of access.

With Quittance Conveyancing, you will get an independent view of the property's legal status, scrutinising contract considerations ranging from onerous leasehold conditions to possible freehold acquisition traps.

Conservation areas in Birmingham

Your conveyancing solicitor will confirm whether the home you are intending to buy is in a conservation area in Birmingham. If it is, the home could be affected by specific restrictions. These restrictions may include a wide range of constraints from restrictions preventing the addition of new access, to restrictions on the addition of a porch.

The local council can order any non-compliant alterations to a property to be changed or removed, such as removing wall render or paint.

Conservation areas in Birmingham include Selly Park, Bournville Village and Edgbaston. Your conveyancing solicitor will address whether your planned purchase is located one of Birmingham's conservation areas.

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Birmingham conveyancing solicitor fees

No Move, No Fee conveyancing in Birmingham

Conveyancing solicitor fees will be paid to conveyancing solicitors in Birmingham for the legal work associated with buying or selling a property.

How are Birmingham conveyancing fees calculated?

We work on a fixed No Sale, No Fee conveyancing basis with no nasty surprises in the small print, unlike some other conveyancing solicitors in Birmingham who carry out the legal work on an hourly rate. Your quote will explain all fees and disbursements you will need to pay when your property transaction has completed.

Are there any other costs in addition to conveyancing fees?

In addition to the solicitor's conveyancing fees you will also have to pay for 'disbursements'.

Disbursements are the third-party costs that your conveyancer will pass on to you at the end of the conveyancing process, such as bankruptcy checks or leasehold information packs.

See: Complete list of conveyancing fees and disbursements

How much will the total Birmingham solicitor conveyancing fees be?

Birmingham conveyancing solicitor fees should be the same as anywhere else in the UK. However, the costs of certain disbursements can vary. As examples, Local Authority (LA) Search fees will vary and additional region-specific searches, e.g. utilities searches, may be needed.

There are no hidden fees or costs to be paid with Quittance. For a standard conveyancing transaction, the conveyancing fee we quote is the fee you pay. To calculate your conveyancing fees, try our conveyancing fees quote calculator: Click here

Quittance's conveyancing fees were considerably cheaper than the Estate Agent's recommended solicitor's fees

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Conveyancing - Selling a property in Birmingham

The conveyancing process on a property sale is less difficult than when purchasing. The buyer's conveyancer conducts due diligence into the property and its legal title. Conveyancing solicitors in Birmingham acting for the seller, however, merely replies to the solicitor's standard and additional enquiries.

What could go wrong?

Issues, such as problems with a party wall agreement or missing planning regulations, can hinder the sale conveyancing process if not dealt with promptly.

It is best not to procrastinate, trusting that the issue won't be discovered - speak to an expert instead and attempt to resolve it proactively.

Recommended reading:

Read more conveyancing advice for sellers.

Leasehold conveyancing for a sale

The conveyancing process for a leasehold property is quite a lot more time-consuming than it is for a freehold home.

The complexities of leasehold mean conveyancing solicitors in Birmingham will usually undertake additional legal work, such as requesting an up-to-date service charge statement, through to details of any consents for alterations.

It is recommended that the seller instruct a solicitor as soon as possible to mitigate often unavoidable leasehold delays.

Can Quittance conveyancers act for the buyer and the seller of the same house?

CLC-regulated conveyancers can act for both parties. However, SRA rules prevent the same solicitor from acting on both sides in a house sale.

If you are buying or selling a home in Birmingham, and a Quittance conveyancer is acting for the other side, you could instruct a property solicitor firm in Birmingham to undertake your conveyancing.

Local Birmingham conveyancing solicitor directory

  • Corper Solicitors, One Victoria Square, Birmingham, West Midlands, B1 1BD
  • DLA Piper UK LLP, Victoria Square House, Victoria Square, Birmingham, West Midlands, B2 4DL
  • Browne Jacobson LLP, Victoria Square House, Victoria Square, Birmingham, West Midlands, B2 4BU
  • Coley & Tilley, Neville House, Waterloo Street, Birmingham, West Midlands, B2 5UF
  • Duncan Lewis Solicitors Ltd, 104-106 Colmore Row, Birmingham, West Midlands, B3 3AG
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Conveyancing - Remortgaging a property in Birmingham

Although there are many reasons to remortgage, homeowners generally remortgage their home to secure a lower interest rate.

Homeowners will typically be able to benefit from a better rate sooner with a more proactive conveyancing solicitor in Birmingham, working to reduce the processing time of the legal work. With the base rate now at 0.5% (May 2018) and possible rate rises on the horizon, fast conveyancing can be a contributing factor to securing the rate you want.

A property lawyer will need to act for both you and the mortgage provider, in order to confirm the lender's new interest is correctly registered and the lender's interests are protected.

Gaynor Haliday, Legal researcher

About the author

Gaynor Haliday is an experienced legal researcher and published author. She has had numerous articles published in the press and is a legal industry commentator.

Read more about this Quittance Legal Expert

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