Updated: October 12, 2018

Barnet conveyancing solicitor fees

No Move, No Fee conveyancing in Barnet

Conveyancing solicitor fees are what you pay your Barnet conveyancing solicitor for the legal work for a home sale or purchase.

How are Barnet conveyancing fees calculated?

Some conveyancing solicitors in Barnet carry out the legal work on a fees per hour basis, whereas others work on a fixed fee (or 'No Move, No Fee'). We work on a fixed No Move, No Fee basis, with no unexpected, additional costs. Your conveyancing quote will set out what you will be charged when your sale or purchase completes.

Are there any other costs?

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

Disbursements are fees, costs or taxes that your property solicitor will have to pay to third parties on behalf of their client, such as Stamp Duty or office copies.

See: Complete list of conveyancing fees

How much will the total conveyancing fees in Barnet cost?

Whilst conveyancing fees in Barnet will be the same as anywhere else in the country, the disbursements required can vary. For example, Local Authority Search fees can vary and specific extra searches, e.g. a historic mining search, may be necessary.

For standard conveyancing transactions, the conveyancing fee we quote is the fee you pay. There are no hidden fees or nasty surprises with Quittance Conveyancing. To calculate your conveyancing fees, try our conveyancing fees quote calculator: Click here

Quittance's conveyancing fees were substantially lower than the average solicitors' fees, and their service was first-rate

Conveyancing - Buying a property in Barnet

The north London Borough of Barnet is the second largest London borough by population and fourth largest by area.

In anticipation of expected population growth in coming decades, Barnet council has committed to increasing the housing supply to deliver affordable homes.

Although a large London borough, much of Barnet lies within the Metropolitan Green Belt. It has sixteen large parks and other open spaces, including eight local nature reserves, and more than sixty sites of importance for nature conservation, making it an attractive location to settle.

Conveyancing for home buyers

As a key part of the legal work for the purchase of a house or flat, the Barnet conveyancing solicitor will examine the draft contract and investigate the title of the property and report back to the buyer and the lender.

The solicitor will give advice following their enquiries, assist in resolving any issues and register the new owner's title at the Land Registry.

This section of the article offers advice for homebuyers looking for conveyancing solicitors in Barnet.

Your Barnet conveyancing solicitor must be lender-approved

Whether your mortgage is with a major lender like Tesco Bank or a niche mortgage lender such as Scottish Widows, before instructing a conveyancing solicitor in Barnet you need to check that they can act in the interests of your chosen lender.

Your conveyancer may be unable to act for your chosen lender, because some lenders will only work with a select group (often referred to as a 'panel') of legal practices.

Under these circumstances, the lender will probably require a different firm to complete the legal work, and you will then have to cover this substitute solicitor's fees. Resulting delays can jeopardise the whole purchase.

Neglecting to check your conveyancer's lender panel status can result in serious delays.

Our conveyancing solicitors are on the panel of all lenders.

Conveyancing Searches (Barnet Borough Council)

Searches are carried out by Barnet conveyancing solicitors to help identify problems that could have an impact on how much the property you intend to buy will be worth.

Lenders also expect conveyancing search packs to be obtained. These include:

SearchDescription
Local Authority (LA) searchreveals planning applications, decisions and enforcement notices for planning breaches.
Drainage & Water searchidentifies the location of sewers and water mains, and will confirm whether these are maintained by the local council.
Environmental searchdescribes hazards (such as historic flooding or mining subsidence) within 500m of the property. This search also identifies sites of contaminated land nearby.
Chancel repair liabilityinsurance is arranged to protect the buyer against any liability for local parish church repairs.

Additional searches, such as a more detailed flood report or a mining search, may also be referred to in the standard search results.

Property purchasers can expect to wait roughly 15 weeks for Residential property searches supplied by The London Borough of Barnet. Your lawyer could instead use faster personal searches.

Planning searches

Your conveyancing solicitor will request official entries from HMLR. This will help to highlight planning issues. These issues could include a difference between the agent's floorplan and the title plan or a restrictive covenant against certain alterations.

London Borough of Barnet Council Tax

Council tax is calculated by London Borough of Barnet on property value and the number of people living in the property. E.g. a home in the London Borough of Barnet area in Valuation Band C would pay £1,319 per annum.

Conveyancing solicitors in Barnet will inform the purchaser of the home's council tax band once they have the Local Authority search results.

If the property is unoccupied for 2 years or more, an additional premium of 50% may be applied to the council tax. Single person discount reduces the tax due to 75% which would equal £989.

Other discounts and exemptions could also apply, for example a 10% discount for second homes (although this may change as the government has second home ownership in its sights) or if the property is occupied by someone who is seriously mentally impaired.

Band London Borough of Barnet Tax (2018)
A £989
B £1,154
C £1,319
D £1,484
E £1,813
F £2,143
G £2,473
H £2,967

Is it possible to reduce my council tax band?

The Valuation Office Agency should reassess a property's band on request. Councils prefer that this be done within six months of buying a property. To challenge your banding contact:

Valuation Office Agency
Chase House
305 Chase Rd
London
N14 6LZ

Stamp Duty on Barnet properties

If your home costs more than £125k then you will have to pay SDLT. Completing the SDLT1 form in order to pay stamp duty is a daunting prospect for a layperson.

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

See examples for typical local properties:

  Average selling price (February 2018) Stamp Duty
Average price £699,164 £24,958.20
Average price (detached) £1,385,750 £82,325.00
Average new build £467,500 £13,375.00

Stamp duty relief for first-time buyers in Barnet

Relief is available on home purchases below £300,000 for first-time buyers with relief up to £500,000 in some areas. Homeowners must pay a higher rate of SDLT when buying a second property. For example, if an existing homeowner bought a second property in Barnet for the average price of £699,164 the SDLT would be £55,933.12.

Barnet conveyancing solicitors will ensure the correct tax is paid.

Buying a flat? Leasehold conveyancing in Barnet

New build site

The potential risks of buying a leasehold house or flat in the UK are well established. Ground rent multipliers, unreasonable managing agent fees and onerous covenants are among the many potential difficulties lying in wait for an uninformed purchaser.

Misguided leasehold advice, from a property lawyer lacking in specialist knowledge, can have serious consequences.

If you are planning to buy a leasehold home, a experienced conveyancing solicitor in Barnet will address aspects of leasehold, such as :

  • reviewing the lease itself (some documents can be centuries old)
  • managing agent practices
  • service charges
  • flats with varying lease terms

Quittance Conveyancing's leasehold conveyancing solicitor team will work to ensure that you are aware of all the potential issues and costs associated with the lease.

Buying a 'New Build' property in Barnet?

Building site

The average cost of new build properties in Barnet is £504,470, according to Her Majesty's Land Registry. 56 brand new homes have been bought in Barnet in 2018 so far.

Buying a new build is considerably more complicated than buying a 'secondhand' home. To avoid potential problems a conveyancing solicitor in Barnet must be conscious of local issues and must look into numerous things, like checking new build mortgage procedures are followed and investigating road and drainage issues.

Quittance Conveyancing deliver an independent assessment of the legal title of the house or flat, looking out for factors ranging from the home's subsequent marketability to likely freehold acquisition traps.

London Conservation areas

If you are purchasing a house in one of Barnet's conservation areas, the property must not breach any conservation area constraints. These restrictions could include:

  • Restrictions on the removal of front boundary walls, railings or fences
  • Restrictions on the addition of flues and soil vent pipes
  • Limits on the installation of VELUX windows

The local authority can order any non-compliant alterations to a property to be changed or removed, such as removing a flue.

Hampstead Garden Suburb, Church End and Monken Hadley are among the conservation areas in Barnet. Your conveyancing solicitor will confirm whether the property you are buying is located in one of Barnet's conservation areas.

Conveyancing - Selling a property in Barnet

The legal process for a house sale usually requires less work than when buying. When a house or flat changes hands, the responsibility is on the buyer to determine whether the title of the property they are buying is legally sound.

On the other hand, when selling, conveyancing solicitors in Barnet acting for the seller effectively just answer the buyer's solicitor's questions.

What could jeopardise your sale?

Properties can be burdened by many legal problems (for example being situated on an unadopted road) that have the capacity to draw out a purchase for weeks.

Property specialists will generally advise to vendors that they handle such issues as soon as they come to light.

Further reading:

Read more helpful advice for sellers here.

Leasehold flats

Conveyancing for a leasehold flat (houses are rarely leasehold) is much more involved than it is for a freehold home.

Barnet conveyancing solicitors will also need to carry out additional work, such as requesting the managing agent pack, through to details of common parts management.

To accelerate the handling of the leasehold work, it is strongly advised that the vendor contacts a leasehold-specialist conveyancer as early as possible.

Can Quittance conveyancers act for both the buyer and the seller in a single transaction?

Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) rules prevent a single conveyancing solicitor from working on behalf of both sides in a property sale. Conveyancers who are regulated by the CLC, however, can act for both sides.

If you are buying or selling a Barnet property, and we are doing the legal work for the other side, you can contact a property solicitor firm in Barnet to handle your legal work.

Local Barnet conveyancing solicitor directory

  • P W Moody, 84 East Barnet Road, New Barnet, Hertfordshire, EN4 8RQ
  • Peter Brown & Co Solicitors LLP, Ground & First Floor, Comer House, 19 Station Road, New Barnet, Hertfordshire, EN5 1QJ
  • Howard Schneider Spiro Steele, Constable House, 5 Bulwer Road, Barnet, Hertfordshire, EN5 5JD
  • Macrory Ward, 27 Station Road, New Barnet, Barnet, Hertfordshire, EN5 1PH
  • Parkes Wilshire Johnson, 59 Church Hill Road, East Barnet, Herts, EN4 8SY

Conveyancing - Remortgaging a property in Barnet

By far the most common reason homeowners remortgage a home is to reduce the monthly repayments. There are also other reasons to consider remortgaging, including borrowing more to help pay for an extension, or switching from interest-only to repayment.

Homeowners can enjoy the benefits of a better rate earlier by using a more efficient conveyancing solicitor in Barnet, accelerating the time taken to complete the process. With the future of interest rates uncertain, fast conveyancing can be a contributing factor to securing the rate you want.

In order to ensure that the interests of the lender are protected, the property lawyer handling your remortgage will act for both you and the mortgage lender.

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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