Updated: October 12, 2018

Chesham conveyancing solicitor fees and costs

No Move, No Fee conveyancing in Chesham

Conveyancing solicitor fees are the charges you pay to your Chesham conveyancing solicitor for the legal work associated with moving home.

How are Chesham conveyancing fees calculated?

Our conveyancing solicitors work on a fixed No Sale, No Fee basis with no nasty surprises in the small print, unlike some other conveyancing solicitors in Chesham who offer services on a fees per hour basis. Your conveyancing quote explains exactly what you will need to pay when your sale or purchase completes.

What are disbursements?

You will need to budget for 'disbursements', in addition to the solicitor's conveyancing fees.

Disbursements are the costs and expenses a solicitor needs to pay out on behalf of a client, such as Stamp Duty or telegraphic transfer fees.

See: Complete list of conveyancing fees

How much will the total conveyancing fees in Chesham cost?

Conveyancing solicitor fees in Chesham will not vary. However, there may be some variation in certain disbursements. For example, specific extra searches, such as a commons registration search, may be necessary and Local Authority (LA) Search fees will vary.

There are no hidden costs or nasty surprises with Quittance Conveyancing. For a standard home sale or purchase, the fees we quote are the fees you pay. Calculate the conveyancing fees for your move, with our conveyancing fees calculator: Click here

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

Conveyancing - Buying a property in Chesham

As a key part of the conveyancing for a homebuyer, a conveyancing solicitor in Chesham will carry out due diligence on the title of the property and make their "report on title".

Following their enquiries the lawyer will give advice and will help to fix or resolve any legal issues and confirm that the Land Registry's record of the property is updated.

The content below discusses elements of the legal process for conveyancing solicitors in Chesham necessitating a deeper level of knowledge.

Your Chesham conveyancing solicitor must be lender-approved

Irrespective of whether you are obtaining a mortgage from NatWest, Fleet Mortgages or any other lender, before you choose a conveyancing solicitor in Chesham it is paramount that you confirm that they are approved by your mortgage lender.

Quite a few mortgage lenders will only work with a restricted list (called a 'lender panel') of legal practices. If a solicitor is not on the panel of your mortgage lender, the lender will probably need an alternative legal firm to complete the legal work.

The home buyer will usually need to pay this substitute solicitor's fees, and weeks could be added to the conveyancing process.

Your property purchase can be seriously delayed if you fail to confirm your conveyancer's lender panel status.

Quittance Conveyancing are approved to act for all lenders.

Conveyancing Searches (Chiltern District Council)

Searches are questions submitted to public bodies by Chesham conveyancing solicitors to highlight issues affecting the home you want to buy. They include:

SearchDescription
Local Authority (LA) searchreveals issues like whether the adjoining road and pavement are publicly maintained
Environmental searchcovers environmental issues within 500m of the property, including flooding, mining subsidence and the proximity of landfill and contaminated land sites.
Drainage & Water searchconfirms who is responsible for the upkeep of the water pipes and drainage that serve the property.
Chancel repair liabilityinsurance is arranged to protect the buyer against any liability for local parish church repairs.

More specific searches, such as an HS2 search or an energy search, may also be referred to following the initial searches.

The typical processing time for searches supplied by Chiltern District Council is 4 weeks, so quicker regulated searches will be recommended.

Ensuring planning permission is in place

Official Entries will also be ordered from HMLR by the conveyancing solicitor acting for the homebuyer. This will help to highlight any planning issues, for example restrictions that limit alterations or errors on the title plan.

Chiltern District Council Council Tax

Chiltern District Council calculate council tax on Chesham homes based on the number of occupants and the historic value of the property (as valued at 1 April 1991). For example, for an average Band D home in Chesham, the amount of council tax due would be £1,785 per year.

Chesham conveyancing solicitors will inform the purchaser of the property's 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 £1,338.

Other discounts and exemptions could also apply, for example where the home is empty or unfurnished for a maximum of 60 days or if an occupier is an apprentice school leaver or YTS trainee.

Band Chiltern District Council Tax (2018)
A £1,190
B £1,388
C £1,586
D £1,785
E £2,181
F £2,578
G £2,974
H £3,569

Can I dispute my band?

It is possible to challenge the council tax band after moving in. Between April 2016 and April 2017, 10 council tax challenges were made, of which 0 resulted in a reduction. To challenge your banding contact:

Valuation Office Agency
St. Peters House
45 Victoria St
St. Albans
AL1 3WZ
Hertfordshire

Stamp Duty on Chesham properties

SDLT is paid after an SDLT1 form is completed. The form is hard to understand in places - even some non-conveyancing solicitors struggle with it.

If you are buying a property that costs over £125k, then you will have to pay SDLT to HMRC.

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

See table below for stamp duty examples for properties in Chesham:

  Average sale price (2017) SDLT
Average price £451,814 £12,590.70
Average price (detached) £733,496 £26,674.80
Average new build £310,994 £5,549.70

Stamp duty relief for first-time buyers in Chesham

For first-time buyers, stamp duty is only payable on purchases over £300,000. Since 1st April 2016, buyers of second homes are subject to a surcharge of 3%, even if the home is not rented out. E.g. if a second property was bought for £451,814 then the SDLT including the surcharge would be £36,145.12. .

Chesham conveyancing solicitors will confirm an accurate calculation is made.

Buying a flat? Leasehold conveyancing in Chesham

New build site

Buying a leasehold house or flat is not as simple as purchasing a freehold home. There are any number of legal technicalities that could be lying in wait for an uninformed buyer, such as exponential ground rents and freeholds sold without first refusal to leaseholders.

Serious consequences can result from an inexperienced conveyancing solicitor's failure to advise you correctly regarding your planned leasehold purchase.

If you are planning to buy a house or flat with a lease, a expert conveyancing solicitor in Chesham will consider possible leasehold issues, e.g. :

  • understanding regional and era-specific nuances of leases
  • absent freeholders
  • any recent demands for service charges and ground rent
  • enfranchisement
  • proposed major works (Section 20 notices)

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

Buying a 'New Build' property in Chesham?

House under construction

According to data compiled by HMLR, the average cost of new builds in Chesham is £310,994. 18 new build houses and flats were purchased in Chesham last year.

The legal work for acquiring a new build property can be complicated compared to other types of conveyancing. To avoid potential problems a conveyancing solicitor in Chesham must be mindful of local Chesham issues and must consider a range of factors, e.g. helping with mortgage offer extension terms and confirming building regulation compliance.

Our new build conveyancing team are specialists in working to developer exchange timeframes and helping new build purchasers obtain the best possible terms.

Buckinghamshire Conservation areas

If you are buying a home in one of Chesham's conservation areas, the property must be compliant with any local conservation area conditions. Called Article 4 directions, these building controls could include:

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

The local authority can order any non-compliant alterations to a property to be changed or removed.

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

Conveyancing - Selling a property in Chesham

The legal process for a property sale is less demanding than when purchasing. The buyer's conveyancer must carry out due diligence into the property and its legal title. In contrast, conveyancing solicitors in Chesham acting for the vendor essentially just responds to enquiries made by the buyer's solicitor.

Factors that could delay or endanger the sale process

A house or flat will often come with a series of challenges (e.g. a landlord dispute on a leasehold property or a dispute with a neighbour) that have the capacity to threaten the completion of a purchase.

Property specialists almost always advise that vendors face such issues head on and fix them.

Recommended reading:

For more conveyancing advice for sellers click here.

Sale conveyancing for a leasehold property

The legal work for a leasehold flat is much more complicated than for a more straightforward freehold house.

Conveyancing solicitors in Chesham will also carry out additional work, which could include collating the latest service charge and ground rent statement, through to any information about regulations affecting the property that are not in the lease.

To help mitigate the delays involved in selling a leasehold house or flat, it is highly recommended that the seller instruct a property lawyer as early in the process as possible, and preferably before going on the market,.

Can your conveyancing solicitors act for both parties?

Solicitors Regulation Authority rules ban the same solicitor from acting on both sides in a house sale. A CLC-regulated conveyancer, however, can act for both the buyer and the seller.

You may want to instruct a property solicitor firm in Chesham to carry out your conveyancing, if we are doing the legal work for the other side.

Local Chesham conveyancing solicitor directory

  • Iliffes Booth Bennett, The Bury, Church Street, Chesham, Buckinghamshire, HP5 1JE
  • Lennons Solicitors Limited, Chess Chambers, 2 Broadway Court, Chesham, Buckinghamshire, HP5 1EG
  • Bps Solicitors, 85 High Street, Chesham, Buckinghamshire, HP5 1DE

Conveyancing - Remortgaging a property in Chesham

The main reason people remortgage is to get a more attractive interest rate. There are a number of other reasons to switch lenders or mortgage deals, for example fixing the mortgage on a new discounted rate, or releasing capital to pay off other debts.

Homeowners should be able to enjoy a lower rate faster with a more efficient conveyancing solicitor in Chesham, minimising the time taken to complete the conveyancing. With the base rate now at 0.5% (May 2018), fast conveyancing can play a key role in securing your preferred rate.

In order to ensure that the lender's interests are safeguarded, the property lawyer handling your remortgage will act for both you and your new 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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