Updated: October 12, 2018

Birstall conveyancing solicitor fees

No Move, No Fee conveyancing in Birstall

Conveyancing solicitor fees are paid conveyancing solicitors in Birstall for the legal work associated with moving home.

Do Birstall conveyancing solicitors work on a fixed fee basis?

Some conveyancing solicitors in Birstall carry out the legal work on a price per hour basis. Some conveyancers will complete the work for a fixed fee (or 'No Move, No Fee'). Quittance's conveyancing 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. Your conveyancing quote explains what you will be charged when your sale or purchase goes through.

Besides conveyancing fees, what other costs are there?

In addition to the solicitor's conveyancing fees you will also have to cover any '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 leasehold information packs or Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT).

See: A guide to conveyancing fees, costs and disbursements

How much will conveyancing in Birstall cost in total?

Although conveyancing fees in Birstall will usually match prices elsewhere in the UK, there may be some variation in certain disbursements. For example, council search fees will vary and additional region-specific searches, such as a historic mining search, may be needed.

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

Quittance's fees were cheaper - less than half the Estate Agent's recommended solicitor's fees

Conveyancing - Buying a property in Birstall

As a key part of the conveyancing for the purchase of a house or flat, a Birstall conveyancing solicitor will investigate the legal ownership rights or 'title' of the property and report back to the purchaser and the mortgage lender (if applicable).

The buyer's solicitor will give advice once their enquiries are complete, offer practical solutions and register the title in the new owner's name.

The following section examines the property types which may be of interest to buyers searching for conveyancing solicitors in Birstall.

Your Birstall conveyancing solicitor must be lender-approved

Before instructing a conveyancing solicitor in Birstall, it is vital that you check that they can act for your mortgage lender, whether you are getting a mortgage from the Furness Building Society, NatWest or any other lender.

Your lawyer may not be able to carry out the legal work for your mortgage lender, because some lenders are only happy to work with a restricted group of firms.

Should this be the case, the lender will likely require an alternative firm to carry out the legal work, and you will then have to cover this second lawyer's fees. Resulting delays can jeopardise the whole purchase.

Failing to check your conveyancing solicitor's lender panel status could mean serious delays.

Our conveyancing solicitors are approved members of all lender panels.

Residential Property Searches (Kirklees Metropolitan Borough Council)

Property searches (sometimes referred to as 'conveyancing searches') are enquiries made of government bodies by Birstall conveyancing solicitors to provide information about the property being purchased.

Banks and building societies also need to see specific searches to be carried out. These include:

SearchDescription
Local Authority (LA) searchreveals issues like whether the adjoining road and pavement are publicly maintained
Environmental searchexposes whether the land around the property (500m radius) has been affected by subsidence, flooding or has been identified as "contaminated land"
Drainage & Water searchcovers the location of water pipes and drains, and reveals if the upkeep for these falls on the owner or local council.
Chancel repair liabilitysome Birstall property may still owe a liability to the local parish for repairs. Insurance can be taken out to protect against this risk.

More specialised searches, such as a Crossrail search or a commons registration search, may also be advised in the standard searches.

Buyers can expect to wait up to 4 weeks for property searches delivered by Kirklees Metropolitan Borough Council. Your lawyer will therefore recommend using faster personal searches.

Ensuring planning permission is in place

Your conveyancing solicitor will source an Official Copy of the Title Register from HMLR, assisting with the identification of any planning issues. These issues could include a difference between the agent's floorplan and the title plan or neighbours' rights of access.

Kirklees Metropolitan Borough Council Council Tax

Council tax is calculated by Kirklees Metropolitan Borough Council on property value and the number of people living in the property. E.g. the occupier of a Tax Band B residential property in the Kirklees Metropolitan Borough Council area would pay annual council tax of £1,321.

A conveyancing solicitor in Birstall will inform the buyer of the home's tax band after this is confirmed by the searches.

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 (25%) would reduce the tax due to £990.

Other discounts and exemptions could also apply, for example if the property is uninhabited (for the first 60 days) or if you are a live in carer looking after someone who isn't a spouse or relative. The Valuation Office Agency work out bandings for new homes, and where the owner has requested a revaluation.

Band Kirklees Metropolitan Borough Council Tax (2018)
A £1,132
B £1,321
C £1,509
D £1,698
E £2,075
F £2,452
G £2,830
H £3,396
To challenge your banding contact:

Valuation Office Agency
Castle House
31 Lisbon St
Leeds
LS1 4DR
West Yorkshire

A property owner can also apply for their property to be reassessed, and if the valuation is revised down, they may receive a refund.

Stamp Duty on Birstall properties

When purchasing a home, Stamp Duty Land Tax will probably need to be paid if the property is valued at over £125k. SDLT is paid to HMRC and the purchaser's conveyancing solicitor will ensure that the tax return process is carried out.

Quittance Conveyancing is able to administer the Stamp Duty Land Tax process faster and more efficiently than ever, using integrated online systems.

See table below for SDLT examples for homes in West Yorkshire:

  Average sale price (2017) SDLT
Average price £179,728 £1,094.56
Average price (detached) £308,787 £5,439.35
Average new build £216,556 £1,831.12

Stamp duty relief for first-time buyers in Birstall

Since the budget announcement in November 2017, if you are a first-time buyer, you only pay stamp duty on property valued at over £300k with relief up to £500,000 in some areas. Following a change in April 2016, an SDLT surcharge of 3% is applied for purchases of additional property. E.g. if a second property was bought for £179,728 then the stamp duty including the surcharge would be £8,986.40. .

Conveyancing solicitors in Birstall will confirm their client pays the right amount.

Buying a flat? Leasehold conveyancing in Birstall

New build site

Buying a leasehold home without knowing what you are getting into can be risky. The many potential problems lying in wait for the unsuspecting buyer include:

  • unreasonable lease extension premiums
  • undisclosed major works
  • restrictions on the use of the property
  • unreasonable ground rents
Serious consequences can result from a less-experienced conveyancing solicitor's misguided leasehold advice.

If you intend to buy a leasehold property, a experienced conveyancing solicitor in Birstall will consider possible leasehold issues, for example absent freeholders, checking the lease itself and flats in the same block with disparity between their leases.

Ensure that you are aware of all the potential issues and costs associated with the lease thanks to our leasehold conveyancing solicitors.

Buying a 'New Build' property in Birstall?

New build site

Based on local Her Majesty's Land Registry statistics, 148 new builds have been bought in Birstall in 2018 so far. The average price for Birstall new build properties is £243,458.

A new-build conveyancing solicitor in Birstall must be familiar with Birstall-specific issues and the extra complexities of new build, like confirming rights to use pipes and cables (e.g. phone, data, fibre, electricity) and checking the suitability of new build insurance.

Our new build team specialise in working to developer exchange timeframes and helping the buyer get the best possible purchase terms.

Conservation areas in West Yorkshire

If you are buying a property in a conservation area in Birstall, the property must not breach any conservation area conditions. These conditions, called Article 4 Directions, 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 new owner could be ordered to pay for necessary changes to bring a property in line with current regulations, even if the previous owner carried out the alterations.

The Kirklees local planning authority has assigned conservation area-status to parts of Birstall. Your conveyancing solicitor will confirm whether the property you are buying is located in one of Birstall's conservation areas.

Conveyancing - Selling a property in Birstall

The legal side of a sale of a house or flat is less difficult than when purchasing. With a property purchase, the responsibility lies entirely with the buyer to determine whether the house or flat can be mortgaged and is free from legal issues.

Conversely, when selling, conveyancing solicitors in Birstall acting for the seller just answer the buyer's questions.

Why do sales fall through?

Issues, such as complexities where there is a 'share of freehold', have the potential to threaten your move if not dealt with promptly.

You shouldn't ignore this, hoping the issue will fix itself. Instead, you should get advice and work to resolve it as quickly as possible.

Recommended reading:

For more conveyancing advice for sellers click here.

Selling a leasehold property

The legal work for a leasehold property is much more complex than for a more straightforward freehold house.

Conveyancing solicitors in Birstall will also carry out additional work, which could include requesting all relevant freeholder information, through to any documentation relating to forfeiture proceedings.

To speed up the leasehold conveyancing process, it is highly recommended that you contact a leasehold-specialist lawyer as soon as the decision is made to sell.

What if Quittance conveyancers are acting for the other side?

SRA regulations ban the same solicitor from working on behalf of both sides in a house sale. A CLC-regulated conveyancer, however, can act for both sides.

If you are buying or selling a property in Birstall, and a Quittance solicitor is acting for the other side, you could contact a local Birstall conveyancing solicitor firm to handle your legal work.

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Conveyancing - Remortgaging a property in Birstall

Securing a lower interest rate is usually why people decide to remortgage. There are other reasons, including moving to an offset mortgage, or borrowing more to help pay for an extension.

An efficient conveyancing solicitor in Birstall can reduce the remortgage processing time, perhaps saving you from a payment or two at your old rate. With the base rate set at 0.5% (May 2018) and the future of interest rates unclear, fast conveyancing can be a critical factor in securing the rate you want.

A property lawyer will need to act for both you and the bank or building society to ensure the lender's interests are safeguarded.

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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