Updated: October 12, 2018

Bexleyheath conveyancing solicitor fees and costs

No Move, No Fee conveyancing in Bexleyheath

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

How are Bexleyheath conveyancing fees calculated?

Our solicitors work on fixed legal fees (known as 'No Sale, No Fee' or 'No Move, No Fee') with no nasty surprises in the small print, unlike some other conveyancing solicitors in Bexleyheath who work on a price per hour basis. Your conveyancing quote explains what fees you will need to pay when your sale or purchase goes through.

What are disbursements?

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

Disbursements are the costs incurred by the solicitor on your behalf, such as property searches or identity verification checks.

See: A guide to conveyancing fees, costs and disbursements

How much will conveyancing in Bexleyheath cost in total?

Bexleyheath conveyancing fees will be the same as anywhere else in the country. However, there may be some variation in certain disbursements. For example, Local Authority Search fees can vary and additional region-specific searches, e.g. utilities searches, may be needed.

With Quittance, there are no hidden fees or surprises in the small print. For standard conveyancing transactions, 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

Conveyancing - Buying a property in Bexleyheath

Bexleyheath is a town in the London Borough of Bexley. With affordable homes and great parks and gardens it has become a popular area for families to settle long-term.

There is a wide variety of property, from Georgian built to new houses and flats, and the commute into central London is only around half an hour. The market is one of the most buoyant in London, with southern Bexleyheath's proximity to the popular Bexley village area raising local house prices.

Conveyancing for home buyers

In carrying out the legal work for the purchase of a house or flat, a conveyancing solicitor in Bexleyheath will investigate the legal ownership rights or 'title' of the property and make their "report on title".

Following their enquiries the conveyancer will make recommendations and will help to fix or resolve any legal issues and register the new owner's title at the Land Registry.

The following considers those parts of the legal process for conveyancing solicitors in Bexleyheath where a deeper understanding of the legal technicalities is crucial.

Your Bexleyheath conveyancing solicitor must be lender-approved

Regardless of whether your mortgage is with a financial institution like Capital Home Loans or a major lender such as Sainsbury's Bank, before instructing a Bexleyheath conveyancing solicitor it is critical that you make sure that they are on the approved solicitor panel of your chosen lender.

Most mortgage lenders are only prepared to work with a restricted group of legal firms that pass strict standards. If your solicitor cannot act for your chosen lender, the lender will require a second solicitor firm to carry out the legal work.

You will usually need to pay this alternative lawyer's costs and the conveyancing process could take much longer.

Not checking the lender panel status of your property solicitor could result in significant delays.

Our solicitors can perform the conveyancing for all lenders.

Residential Property Searches (Bexley Borough Council)

Searches will be applied for by Bexleyheath conveyancing solicitors in order to identify any significant issues that might impact the value of the property you intend to buy. They include:

  • Local Authority search - exposes issues like road schemes that could affect the property
  • Drainage & Water search - describes water mains and sewers, and confirms if these are privately maintained
  • Environmental search - environmental issues that could adversely affect the property
  • Chancel repair liability - involves the potential liability owed by the owners of certain property to pay for local parish church repairs. Insurance can be arranged to cover this risk.

More specific searches, such as a radon gas search or a disadvantaged area search, may also be referred to in the initial LA and Environmental searches.

The typical delivery time for Residential property searches supplied by The London Borough of Bexley is 5 weeks, so it will be worth using a faster private search company.

Planning documents

Official Entries will also be sourced from HM Land Registry by the purchaser's conveyancing solicitor. This will help to highlight planning issues. Examples of these include restrictions that limit alterations or outbuildings lying outside the boundary.

London Borough of Bexley Council Tax

London Borough of Bexley calculate your council tax based on a variety of factors e.g. the size of the home and the value of the home as determined by the VOA in 1991. For example, for an average Band E residential property in Bexleyheath, the council tax amount would be £1,941 per year.

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

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 £1,456.

Other discounts and exemptions could also apply, e.g. where the home is empty or unfurnished for a maximum of 60 days or where an inhabitant is an 18 year old for whom child benefit is payable. The Valuation Office Agency (VOA) work out bands for new homes, and where the owner has requested a revaluation.

Band London Borough of Bexley Tax (2018)
A £1,059
B £1,235
C £1,412
D £1,588
E £1,941
F £2,294
G £2,647
H £3,176

Could you be overpaying?

A property owner can also ask for their property to be reassessed, and if the valuation is revised down, they may receive a refund. Contact the VOA for more information on how to challenge your tax band:

Valuation Office Agency
Unicorn House
28 Elmfield Rd
Bromley
BR1 1LR
Kent

Stamp Duty on Bexleyheath properties

Stamp duty is paid to Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs (HMRC) by completing an SDLT1 form. The form is lengthy and complex.

SDLT will be due from the purchaser on properties sold for more than £125k in England and Wales.

Our post-completion conveyancing team use case management system to ensure the SDLT1 tax return is submitted to Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs (HMRC) as quickly as possible.

See table below for Stamp Duty Land Tax examples for properties in Bexleyheath:

  Average sale price (2017) Stamp Duty
Average price £383,632 £9,181.60
Average price (detached) £519,242 £15,962.10
Average new build £472,639 £13,631.95

Stamp duty relief for first-time buyers in Bexleyheath

First-time buyer stamp duty relief is available on property purchases below £300,000. Following a change in April 2016, a higher rate of 3% is applied for purchases of additional property. E.g. if a second property was bought for £383,632 then the SDLT including the surcharge would be £30,690.56. .

Conveyancing solicitors in Bexleyheath will ensure the right amount is calculated.

Buying a flat? Leasehold conveyancing in Bexleyheath

New build site

The drawbacks associated with buying a leasehold property are of serious concern. Numerous technical issues may be lying in wait for an uninformed buyer, such as:

  • reversionary interests
  • unreasonable lease extension premiums
  • spiralling ground rents
Severe consequences can result from a less-experienced property lawyer's erroneous leasehold advice.

A specialist conveyancing solicitor in Bexleyheath will address aspects of leasehold, e.g. current-year service charge estimates, the implications of the remaining length of the lease and dealing with freeholders.

Our leasehold conveyancing solicitor team will ensure that you are fully-informed regarding your planned purchase.

Buying a 'New Build' property in Bexleyheath?

New build building site

Based on local Land Registry statistics, 30 new build properties were purchased in Bexleyheath last year. The average purchase price of new build property in Bexleyheath is £472,639.

A new-build conveyancing solicitor in Bexleyheath must be aware of both local factors and new build's added complexities, like handling the uncertainties of buying off plan, checking planning conditions have been fulfilled and working with warranty providers, including NHBC Buildmark, Zurich Municipal and CRL.

Our highly qualified new build conveyancing team specialise in working to tight developer deadlines and helping new build purchasers obtain the best possible terms.

Conservation areas

Whether you are planning to buy a period coach house or a Victorian family home, if the property is in a defined conservation area, any planned alterations to the property may not be allowed by the local authority.

These constraints can include:

  • Limits on roof terraces
  • Restrictions on dormer windows
  • Needing consent to alter doors and guttering

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 Bexleyheath's conservation areas.

Conveyancing - Selling a property in Bexleyheath

The legal side of a sale of a home usually requires less work than for a purchase. For a house purchase, the principle of 'buyer beware' means that the onus is solely on the buyer to verify that the property they are purchasing can be mortgaged and is free from legal issues.

Conversely, when selling, conveyancing solicitors in Bexleyheath acting for the current owner need only respond to questions set by the buyer's conveyancing solicitor.

Why do sales fall through?

A property will frequently have any number of possible complications (e.g. a problematic solar panel lease or complexities where there is a 'share of freehold') which may derail a sale.

Don't put off finding a solution and hope the buyer's solicitor won't notice. Instead, talk to a professional and work to resolve it promptly.

Useful reading:

Read more sale conveyancing articles here.

Leasehold conveyancing for a sale

Conveyancing for a leasehold property is quite a lot more involved than for a more straightforward freehold house.

Leasehold complexity involves additional tasks on the part of conveyancing solicitors in Bexleyheath, such as collating all relevant freeholder information or a copy of any health and safety assessment for the common parts.

To accelerate the handling of the leasehold work, it is strongly advised that you instruct a conveyancer with leasehold experience as soon as possible.

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

Solicitors Regulation Authority rules ban the same conveyancing solicitor from working on behalf of both sides in a house sale and purchase. A conveyancer who is regulated by the CLC, however, can act for both the buyer and the seller.

If you are buying or selling a Bexleyheath property, and a Quittance conveyancing solicitor is acting for the other side, you may wish to contact a property solicitor firm in Bexleyheath to carry out your conveyancing.

Local Bexleyheath conveyancing solicitor directory

  • Thomas Boyd Whyte, 33 Crook Log, Bexleyheath, Kent, DA6 8EB

Conveyancing - Remortgaging a property in Bexleyheath

Benefitting from a better rate to reduce monthly expenses is usually why people remortgage. There are other reasons, including funding a one-off purchase, or moving from a standard variable rate (SVR) to a fixed-rate.

Homeowners should be able to enjoy a lower rate sooner with a more efficient conveyancing solicitor in Bexleyheath. With the Bank of England base rate now at 0.5% (May 2018) and possible rate rises on the horizon, fast conveyancing can play a key role in getting on to the rate you want.

It is key that the property lawyer carrying out the remortgage can represent your chosen lender. Our conveyancing team are on the panel for all major lenders. So whether you are switching to a lifetime tracker mortgage with Birmingham Midshires or to a long-term fixed mortgage with the Manchester Building Society, we can help.

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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