Updated: October 12, 2018

Braintree conveyancing solicitor fees

No Move, No Fee conveyancing in Braintree

Conveyancing solicitor fees are the amounts you pay to conveyancing solicitors in Braintree for the legal work involved in moving home.

How are Braintree conveyancing fees calculated?

Our solicitors work on fixed legal fees (known as 'No Sale, No Fee' or 'No Move, No Fee') with no unexpected, additional costs, unlike some other conveyancing solicitors in Braintree who work on a cost per hour basis. Your conveyancing quote explains what fees you will need to pay when your property transaction has completed.

Are there any other costs?

You will have to pay any 'disbursements', on top of the conveyancing fees.

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

See: A guide to all conveyancing fees

How much will the total conveyancing fees in Braintree cost?

Although conveyancing fees in Braintree 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 Coal Authority search, may be needed.

There are no hidden costs or nasty surprises with Quittance. For a standard 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 conveyancing fees were considerably cheaper than the Estate Agent's recommended solicitor's fees

Conveyancing - Buying a property in Braintree

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

That said, it remains the responsibility of the conveyancing solicitor in Braintree to investigate the property, so that they can report back to the purchaser and the mortgage lender (if applicable), deal with any legal problems and make sure that the title is registered in the name of the new buyer.

This article discusses the types of residential property which may be of interest to people looking for conveyancing solicitors in Braintree for a purchase.

Your Braintree conveyancing solicitor must be lender-approved

Before appointing a conveyancing solicitor in Braintree, it is very important that you make sure that they are on the panel of your mortgage lender, whether you are getting a mortgage from Lloyds Bank, Handelsbanken or any other lender.

Quite a few lenders will only accept a restricted panel of solicitors or licensed conveyancers. If a conveyancer is unable to act for your mortgage lender, the lender will need a different solicitor firm to complete the legal work.

The purchaser will usually need to pay this alternative solicitor's costs and significant delays to your move could occur.

Your home move could be jeopardised by failing to confirm your property lawyer's lender panel status.

Quittance Conveyancing are approved to act for all mortgage providers.

Conveyancing Searches (Braintree District Council)

Searches are questions submitted to public bodies by Braintree conveyancing solicitors to provide information about your new home. They include:

  • Local Authority (LA) search - contains information about the property and surrounding area held by Braintree District Council
  • Environmental search - environmental issues that could adversely affect the property
  • Drainage & Water search - covers the location of water pipes and drains, and reveals if the upkeep for these falls on the owner or local council.
  • 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.

Additional searches, such as a Crossrail search or a ground stability report, may also be recommended in the standard search results.

The approximate processing time for Local Authority searches provided by Braintree District Council is 9 weeks. As a result, regulated searches will be faster.

Planning issues

Official Entries (or 'office copies') will also be applied for from HMLR by your conveyancing solicitor. This will help to identify planning issues. These issues could include outbuildings missing from the title plan or neighbours' rights of access.

Braintree District Council Council Tax

Braintree District Council calculate council tax on Braintree homes based on the number of occupants and the historic value of the property (as valued at 1 April 1991). The occupier of a property in Band B, for example, would owe annual council tax of £1,303.

Braintree conveyancing solicitors will inform the purchaser of the property's band as soon as they are made aware.

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 £977.

Other discounts and exemptions may also apply, for example a 10% discount for second homes or if an occupier is a student nurse. Newer homes are assessed by the Valuation Office Agency and allocated a band.

Band Braintree District Council Tax (2018)
A £1,117
B £1,303
C £1,489
D £1,675
E £2,048
F £2,420
G £2,792
H £3,351

Could I be overpaying council tax?

To challenge your banding contact:

Valuation Office Agency
London House
New London Rd
Chelmsford
CM2 0QL
Essex

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.

Stamp Duty on Braintree properties

Stamp duty is paid to HMRC by completing an SDLT1 form. The form is lengthy and complex.

Stamp duty will almost always need to be paid if the house being purchased is valued at over £125,000.

Our post-completion conveyancing team use legal case management system to ensure the SDLT1 tax return is submitted to HMRC as quickly as possible.

See Stamp Duty Land Tax examples for properties in Braintree:

  Average sale price (2017) Stamp Duty Land Tax
Average price £301,329 £5,066.45
Average price (detached) £441,554 £12,077.70
Average new build £282,137 £4,106.85
Higher rates of SDLT apply to buyers of second residential property in the form of a stamp duty surcharge of 3%. E.g. if a second property was bought for £301,329 then the SDLT including the surcharge would be £24,106.32. .

Stamp duty relief for first-time buyers in Braintree

For first-time buyers, stamp duty is only payable on purchases over £300,000.

Braintree conveyancing solicitors will ensure the correct amount is calculated.

Buying a flat? Leasehold conveyancing in Braintree

New build site

The potential pitfalls of purchasing a leasehold flat in the UK are under increasing media scrutiny. Numerous legal issues could be awaiting an uninformed purchaser, including:

  • restrictions on the use of the property
  • marriage value issues
  • increasing ground rents
Poor leasehold guidance, from a lawyer with limited leasehold experience, could have costly, long-term consequences.

A experienced conveyancing solicitor in Braintree will investigate aspects of the leasehold purchase, e.g. :

  • reviewing the lease itself (some leases are over 100 years old)
  • dealing with landlords
  • annual statements of account and budgets for service charges
  • rights issues
  • proposed major works (Section 20 notices)

Our specialist leasehold conveyancing solicitors will ensure that you are aware of all the potential issues and costs associated with the lease.

Buying a 'New Build' property in Braintree?

House being built

The average cost of new build homes in Braintree is £452,500. 3 brand new properties have been bought in Braintree in 2018 so far.

Acquiring a new build is considerably more complicated than buying a 'secondhand' home. To prevent difficulties arising a conveyancing solicitor in Braintree must be mindful of local Braintree considerations and should check a range of issues, like handling equity loan schemes and investigating road and drainage issues.

Our new build team are experts in meeting short developer deadlines and representing buyers to achieve the best outcome.

Essex Conservation areas

Purchasing property in a street located in a conservation area can ensure the local character is unlikely to change. However, conservation area conditions will affect your residential property.

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 previous owner carried out the alterations.

Braintree conservation areas include Cressing, Bocking Church Street and Silver End. Your conveyancing solicitor will address whether your planned purchase is located one of Braintree's conservation areas.

Conveyancing - Selling a property in Braintree

Conveyancing for a house sale is simpler than for a purchase. The buyer carries out detailed due diligence into the property's title and other legal aspects, whereas conveyancing solicitors in Braintree acting for the vendor mostly just gathers together any pertinent information and responds to enquiries made by the buyer's solicitor .

What factors could threaten your sale?

A property can face numerous possible issues (e.g. not having appropriate warranties) that can delay a sale.

Don't put off finding a solution as solicitors are trained to unearth any such issues, instead speak to an expert and attempt to resolve it promptly.

Further reading:

Read more sale conveyancing articles here.

Leasehold

The legal work for a leasehold flat (leasehold houses are rare) is much more technical than for a more straightforward freehold house.

The complexities of leasehold mean conveyancing solicitors in Braintree must undertake additional legal work, including sourcing all relevant freeholder information, through to details of any required deed of covenant.

To accelerate the handling of the leasehold work, it is strongly advised that the vendor contacts a lawyer with leasehold experience as early as possible.

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

SRA rules restrict a single conveyancing solicitor from acting on both sides in a property sale. CLC-regulated conveyancers, however, can act for both sides.

If you are buying or selling a Braintree home, and a Quittance conveyancing solicitor is carrying out the legal work for the other side, you could instruct a property solicitor firm in Braintree to carry out your legal work.

Local Braintree conveyancing solicitor directory

  • Cunningtons LLP, 2 Tofts Walk, Braintree, Essex, CM7 1XH
  • Gepp & Sons Solicitors LLP, Office 8, Colne House, Mount Chambers, 96 Coggeshall Road, Braintree, Essex, CM7 9BY
  • Kew Law LLP, Old Manor House, Little Square, Braintree, Essex, CM7 1UT
  • Steed & Steed LLP, 76-82 & 86 Coggeshall Road, Braintree, Essex, CM7 9BY
  • Holmes & Hills LLP, Bocking End, Braintree, Essex, CM7 9AJ

Conveyancing - Remortgaging a property in Braintree

People remortgage their home for all sorts of reasons, including releasing funds to help kids get on the property ladder, or wanting to overpay when the lender refuses. The main reason, however, is to get a more attractive interest rate.

Homeowners will typically be able to benefit from a lower rate sooner with a more proactive conveyancing solicitor in Braintree, reducing the time the conveyancing takes to complete. With the Bank of England base rate now at 0.5% (May 2018), fast conveyancing can be a key consideration when getting onto your new rate as quickly as possible.

To confirm that the interests of the lender are covered, the property lawyer will represent 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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