Updated: October 12, 2018

Atherton conveyancing solicitor fees and costs

No Move, No Fee conveyancing in Atherton

Conveyancing solicitor fees are the costs you pay conveyancing solicitors in Atherton for handling the legal work for your move.

Are Atherton conveyancing fees and costs fixed?

Some conveyancing solicitors in Atherton work on an hourly-rate basis, while other property lawyers will work for a fixed fee (known as 'No Move, No Fee'). Our conveyancers work on a fixed No Move, No Fee basis, with no hidden fees. Your conveyancing quote will set out exactly what you will be charged when your sale or purchase goes through.

Are there any other costs in addition to conveyancing fees?

In addition to the solicitor's conveyancing fees you will also need to budget for 'disbursements'.

Disbursements are fees, costs or taxes the conveyancing solicitor will have to pay to other organisations as part of the house-buying and selling process, such as landlord's notice fees or local authority searches.

See: Complete list of conveyancing fees and disbursements

How much will the total conveyancing fees in Atherton cost?

Atherton conveyancing fees will not vary, wherever you are buying or selling in the UK. There may, however, be some variation in certain disbursements. As examples, council search fees will vary and specific extra searches, e.g. a Coal Authority search, may be necessary.

With Quittance, there are absolutely no hidden fees. For a standard home sale or purchase, what we quote is the fee you pay. Work out the conveyancing fees for your move, with our conveyancing calculator: Click here

Quittance delivered an excellent service at the lowest conveyancing fees we could find

Conveyancing - Buying a property in Atherton

There is now an obligation on a seller to disclose any property defects or disputes to the buyer and the estate agent.

It remains, however, the duty of the conveyancing solicitor in Atherton to make enquiries about the property, deliver their report on title to the purchaser, iron out any legal issues and ensure that the change of ownership is registered at the Land Registry.

This section sets out useful advice for buyers who want conveyancing solicitors in Atherton.

Your Atherton conveyancing solicitor must be lender-approved

Regardless of whether your mortgage is with a major lender like the Royal Bank of Scotland or a niche mortgage lender such as the Chelsea Building Society, before appointing a conveyancing solicitor in Atherton you must confirm that they can act on behalf of your chosen lender.

Your conveyancer may be unable to act for your chosen lender, because some banks and building societies will only work with a select panel of firms that meet stringent criteria.

If this is the case, the lender will need a different law firm to complete the legal work, and you will usually need to pay this alternate lawyer's fees. Handling paperwork and correspondence with this additional party can delay the process.

Neglecting to check the lender panel status of your conveyancing solicitor can result in serious delays.

Quittance Conveyancing can act on behalf of all lenders.

Conveyancing Searches (Lancaster City Council)

Searches are carried out by Atherton conveyancing solicitors to expose any significant issues that might possibly compromise how much your house or flat will be worth. They include:

  • Local Authority search - contains information about the property and surrounding area held by Lancaster City Council
  • Drainage & Water search - confirms who is responsible for the upkeep of the water pipes and drainage that serve the property.
  • Environmental search - environmental issues that could adversely affect the property
  • Chancel repair liability - describes the insurance to protect against any liability to the local parish for repairs.

More pertinent searches, such as a tin mining search or an agricultural search, may also be recommended in the standard searches.

Buyers can expect to wait up to 6 weeks for LA searches supplied by Lancaster City Council, so personal (as opposed to official) searches will be faster.

Finding planning permissions

Official Entries will also be sourced from HM Land Registry by the buyer's conveyancing solicitor, helping to identify any planning issues, for example a restrictive covenant against certain alterations or a difference between the agent's floorplan and the title plan.

Lancaster City Council Council Tax

As a homeowner in Atherton, the applicable rate of council tax will vary depending on the value of the home (as assessed in 1991) and the number of people living in it. For instance a residential property in the Lancaster City Council area in Tax Band C would pay £1,578 per annum.

Atherton conveyancing solicitors will inform a buyer of the home's council tax band after this is confirmed by the searches.

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 £1,183.

Other discounts and exemptions could also apply, e.g. unoccupied properties undergoing major repairs or structural changes or for spouses of students who are not British.

Band Lancaster City Council Tax (2018)
A £1,183
B £1,381
C £1,578
D £1,775
E £2,170
F £2,564
G £2,959
H £3,550

Are you about you buy a home in the wrong council tax band?

In the 2016/17 financial year, 70 council tax challenges were made, of which 30 saw a reduction. Contact the VOA for more information on how to challenge your tax band:

Valuation Office Agency
Mitre House
Church St
Lancaster
LA1 1HG
Lancashire

Stamp Duty on Atherton properties

The buyer's conveyancing solicitor will ensure that the Stamp Duty Land Tax is correctly calculated and is paid to HMRC. This occurs once the property sale has completed.

A property purchaser will usually need to pay SDLT if the property they are purchasing is valued at over £125,000.

Quittance use smart case management systems to ensure that mistakes are not made on the SDLT process.

The following table illustrates Stamp Duty Land Tax examples for typical properties in Greater Manchester:

  Average sale price (2017) Stamp Duty Land Tax
Average price £158,882 £677.64
Average price (detached) £190,751 £1,315.02
Average new build £268,317 £3,415.85
Since 1st April 2016, buyers of second homes are subject to a 3% stamp duty surcharge, even if the home is not rented out. Therefore, if a homeowner in Atherton bought a second home for the average price of £158,882 the SDLT would be £7,944.10.

Stamp duty relief for first-time buyers in Atherton

Since the budget announcement in 11/17, if you are a first-time buyer, you only pay stamp duty on property valued at over £300,000.

Conveyancing solicitors in Atherton will confirm their client pays the correct amount.

Buying a flat? Leasehold conveyancing in Atherton

New build site

Data suggests that over 100,000 homeowners in the UK are trapped by property leases with problematic terms. Doubling ground rents, costly and undisclosed major works and absent freeholders are among the frequent complications lying in wait for an uninformed purchaser.

Serious consequences can result from a less-experienced conveyancer's erroneous leasehold advice.

A good conveyancing solicitor in Atherton will investigate aspects of the leasehold purchase, such as absent freeholders, reviewing the lease itself (leases can be 10's or even 100's of years old) and leaseholder/freeholder disputes.

Ensure that you are fully-informed regarding your planned purchase with Quittance Conveyancing's specialist leasehold conveyancing solicitors.

Buying a 'New Build' property in Atherton?

Building site

3033 brand new homes were purchased in Bramhall last year, according to information compiled by the Land Registry. The average sale price of Atherton new builds is £268,317.

The legal work for buying a new build home is more involved than any other type of conveyancing. To prevent difficulties arising a conveyancing solicitor in Atherton must be aware of local Atherton considerations and should check numerous things, such as handling deposits and handling initial Land Registry registration.

Our highly qualified new build team are experts in new build purchases and meeting short developer deadlines.

Lancashire Conservation areas

Your conveyancing solicitor will need to check whether the property you are purchasing is in a conservation area in Atherton. If it is, the property could be affected by certain building controls. Referred to as Article 4 directions, these building controls could include anything from restrictions on the use of PVC windows, to general restrictions governing non-uniform additions or modifications.

The new owner could be ordered to pay for necessary changes to bring a property in line with current regulations, even if the changes were made by the previous owner.

Your conveyancing solicitor will address whether your planned purchase is located one of Atherton's conservation areas.

Conveyancing - Selling a property in Atherton

The legal process for a property sale is much easier than for a purchase. The buyer's solicitor does an investigation into the property. Conveyancing solicitors in Atherton acting for the vendor simply collects any required paperwork and answers the buyer's questions .

What factors could threaten your sale?

A home will frequently have a series of possible complications (for example restrictions on how you can use the property or having previously suffered from a flood event) which could prevent a sale from completing.

Don't put off finding a solution as it is highly unlikely that the problems won't be picked up - a better course of action will be to talk to a professional and attempt to resolve it ASAP.

Further reading:

Read more sale conveyancing articles here.

Leasehold flats

Conveyancing for a leasehold flat or house is quite a lot more specialised compared to a freehold house.

Atherton conveyancing solicitors will also need to carry out additional work, and this could include obtaining the latest service charge and ground rent statement, through to a copy of the lease.

To accelerate the handling of the leasehold work, it is recommended that you contact a lawyer with leasehold experience as early in the process as possible, and potentially before going on the market,.

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

A conveyancer regulated by the CLC can act for both parties. However, Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) rules prevent the same solicitor from working on behalf of both sides in a house sale and purchase.

You could instruct a property solicitor firm in Atherton to carry out your legal work, if a Quittance conveyancer is acting for the other side.

Local Atherton conveyancing solicitor directory

  • Russell & Russell, 43 Market Street, Atherton, Manchester, Lancashire, M46 0GQ
  • Swift Lawyers Limited, Bluebell Business Centre, 120 Bolton Road, Atherton, Manchester, Lancashire, M46 9JZ

Conveyancing - Remortgaging a property in Atherton

Reducing monthly repayments by finding a lower interest rate is primarily why homeowners opt to remortgage. There are other reasons, for example wanting a more flexible mortgage, or extending the mortgage term.

An efficient conveyancing solicitor in Atherton will complete the conveyancing quickly, and move you to the better rate sooner. With the base rate now at 0.5% (May 2018) and rate rises anticipated, fast conveyancing can be a key consideration when getting the mortgage rate you want.

It is vitally important that the property lawyer undertaking the legal work can act on behalf of your chosen bank or building society. Quittance Conveyancing are on all major lenders' panels. So whether you are changing to a fixed-rate mortgage with Santander or to a joint mortgage with the Barnsley Building Society, our remortgage team can assist.

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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