Updated: October 12, 2018

Chichester conveyancing solicitor fees

No Move, No Fee conveyancing in Chichester

Conveyancing solicitor fees are what you pay your Chichester conveyancing solicitor for the legal work associated with buying or selling a property.

Do Chichester conveyancing solicitors work on a fixed fee basis?

Our conveyancing solicitors work on a guaranteed fixed conveyancing fee basis with no hidden fees, unlike some other conveyancing solicitors in Chichester who carry out the legal work on an hourly rate. Your quote will set out exactly what you will be charged when your sale or purchase completes.

Are there any other costs?

In addition to the legal fees you will also need to budget for 'disbursements'.

Disbursements are the costs and expenses a solicitor needs to pay out on behalf of a client, such as Land Registry fees or managing agent information.

See: Complete list of conveyancing fees

How much will the total Chichester solicitor conveyancing fees be?

Conveyancing fees in Chichester will not vary, wherever you are buying or selling in the UK. There may, however, be some variation in certain disbursements. For example, specific extra searches, such as a historic mining search, may be necessary and Local Authority (LA) Search fees will vary.

With Quittance Conveyancing, there are absolutely no hidden fees. For a standard home sale or purchase, what we quote is the fee you pay. To calculate the conveyancing fees for your move, 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 Chichester

In carrying out the legal work for a homebuyer, the conveyancing solicitor in Chichester will carry out due diligence on the legal ownership rights or 'title' of the property and report back to the buyer and the lender.

The conveyancer will offer professional advice once their enquiries are complete, offer pragmatic solutions and register the title in the new owner's name.

This part of the article discusses those parts of the legal process for conveyancing solicitors in Chichester requiring specialist legal knowledge.

Your Chichester conveyancing solicitor must be lender-approved

Before choosing a Chichester conveyancing solicitor, you need to check that they are approved by your chosen lender, whether you are getting a mortgage from Whistletree, Britannia or any other lender.

Your solicitor may not be able to carry out the legal work on behalf of your chosen lender, because some lenders are only happy to work with a select panel of firms.

If this is the case, the lender will need an alternative law firm to complete the legal work, and you will then have to cover this second lawyer's costs. This can frustrate or delay the process.

Setbacks can arise if you do not confirm your conveyancing lawyer's lender panel status.

Our solicitors are approved to act for all lenders.

Chichester District Council searches and other searches

Property searches (sometimes referred to as 'conveyancing searches') are carried out by Chichester conveyancing solicitors to help to identify planning, development and environmental issues that could reduce how much the property you are buying will be worth.

Banks and building societies typically also require a list of searches to be applied for. Required searches will include:

  • Local Authority search - includes a list of planning decisions that could affect the property
  • Drainage & Water search - identifies the location of sewers and water mains, and will confirm whether these are maintained by the local council.
  • Environmental search - identifies risks within 500 metres of the property, including flooding subsidence. The search will also reveal nearby landfill sites and contaminated land.
  • Chancel repair liability - describes the insurance to protect against any liability to the local parish for repairs.

Homebuyers will be made aware if your lender wants any additional searches, such as an HS2 search or a commons registration search.

The average delivery time for searches supplied by Chichester District Council is 10 weeks, so faster personal searches will be recommended.

Planning searches

Official Entries (or 'office copies') will also be obtained by the homebuyer's conveyancing solicitor. This will help to expose any potential issues. These issues could include the breach of a restrictive covenant or discrepancies between the property boundaries and the title plan.

Chichester District Council Council Tax

Chichester District Council calculate council tax on Chichester homes based on the number of occupants and the historic value of the property (as valued at 1 April 1991). For instance for an average Valuation Band C home in Chichester, the amount due would be £1,509.

Chichester conveyancing solicitors will inform a buyer of the home's tax band once 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 reduces the tax due to 75% which would equal £1,132.

Other discounts and exemptions may also apply, for example a 10% discount for second homes or properties awaiting grant of probate. A house or flat built after 1991 is assessed and allocated a council tax banding by the Valuation Office Agency.

Band Chichester District Council Tax (2018)
A £1,132
B £1,320
C £1,509
D £1,698
E £2,075
F £2,452
G £2,829
H £3,395

What to do if you suspect your new home is incorrectly valued

The Valuation Office Agency (VOA) should reassess a property's band on request. To challenge your banding contact:

Valuation Office Agency
Strand Parade
The Boulevard
BN12 6EA
West Sussex

Stamp Duty on Chichester properties

The buyer (rather than the seller) will have to pay Stamp Duty Land Tax on the purchase price of the home if it exceeds £125,000. Filling in the SDLT1 form yourself is a daunting prospect and not for those unfamiliar with it.

Quittance 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 properties in Chichester:

  Average sale price (2017) SDLT
Average price £449,308 £12,465.40
Average price (detached) £646,206 £22,310.30
Average new build £431,563 £11,578.15
If you already own another home , anywhere in the world you will be subject to a stamp duty surcharge of 3%. Following the example above, if a homeowner bought a second property in Chichester for the average price of £449,308 the SDLT would be £35,944.64.

Stamp duty relief for first-time buyers in Chichester

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

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

Buying a flat? Leasehold conveyancing in Chichester

New build site

It can be costly to purchase a leasehold property if you don't know what you are getting into. The many potential problems awaiting an uninformed purchaser include:

  • absent freeholders
  • increasing ground rents
  • undisclosed major works
  • excessive freehold premiums
Serious financial ramifications can result from a solicitor's failure to give good leasehold advice.

If you are planning to purchase a leasehold home, a experienced conveyancing solicitor in Chichester will address aspects of leasehold, e.g. :

  • reviewing the lease itself
  • ground rents and service charges
  • managing agent practices
  • type of leasehold (i.e. flat/shared ownership/long leasehold house)
  • share of freehold complexity

Make sure that you are fully-informed regarding your decision to buy a leasehold property - Contact Quittance Conveyancing's leasehold conveyancing solicitor team on 0800 612 0377 today.

Buying a 'New Build' property in Chichester?

Building site

The average price for new builds in Chichester is £428,625, based on statistics published by HM Land Registry. 8 brand new properties have been bought in Chichester in 2018 so far.

The legal side of acquiring a new build home can be complicated compared to other types of conveyancing. To prevent difficulties arising a Chichester conveyancing solicitor must be conscious of local considerations and needs to check numerous things, like handling reservation fees and confirming rights to use pipes and cables (e.g. phone, data, fibre, electricity).

Our highly qualified conveyancing team are experts in ensuring that new build contracts favour the client as much as possible and working to tight developer deadlines.

Conservation areas in West Sussex

Whether you are going to buy a period coach house or a Regency townhouse, if the house is in an officially designated conservation area, any planned alterations to the house might not be allowed by Chichester District Council.

Called Article 4 directions, these building controls may include:

  • Limitations on the erection of outbuildings
  • Restrictions on the addition of flues and soil vent pipes
  • Limits on the erection of outbuildings

If a property is in breach, the owner could be required to pay for the property to be changed back to the state it was in before the recent alterations, even where the alterations were made by the previous owner.

Chichester conservation areas include Prinsted, Mid and East Lavant and Boxgrove. Your Quittance conveyancing solicitor will confirm if the property you are purchasing is located in a conservation area in Chichester.

Conveyancing - Selling a property in Chichester

Conveyancing for a sale of a house or flat is simpler than for a purchase. When buying, the obligation lies with the purchaser to ensure that the title of the property is legally sound and meets their mortgage lender's criteria.

Conversely, when selling, conveyancing solicitors in Chichester acting for the existing owner need only answer questions set by the buyer's conveyancing solicitor.

What could jeopardise the sale process?

Common issues, like not being connected to the main sewers or excessive service charges, can endanger your move.

In general, you should handle these issues as soon as they come to light.

Further reading:

Read more conveyancing advice for sellers.

Leasehold flats

The legal work for a leasehold flat is a great deal more complex than it is for a freehold home.

The complexities of leasehold mean conveyancing solicitors in Chichester must carry out additional legal work. This can involve requesting the latest service charge and ground rent statement, through to details of any consents for alterations.

It is highly recommended that the vendor contact a property lawyer as soon as possible to mitigate predictable leasehold delays.

What if you are already acting for the other side?

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

You can contact a property solicitor firm in Chichester to handle your legal work, if a Quittance conveyancing solicitor is carrying out the legal work for the other side.

Local Chichester conveyancing solicitor directory

  • Irwin Mitchell LLP, Thomas Eggar House, Friary Lane, Chichester, West Sussex, PO19 1UF
  • The Owen Kenny Partnership Limited, 38 South Street, Chichester, West Sussex, PO19 1EL
  • Anderson Rowntree, Avenue House, Southgate, Chichester, West Sussex, PO19 1ES
  • Charles Hill Hubbard LLP, 27-28 Southgate, Chichester, West Sussex, PO19 1ES
  • George Ide LLP, 44 North Street, Chichester, West Sussex, PO19 1NF

Conveyancing - Remortgaging a property in Chichester

Saving money on a better rate is the main reason that people remortgage. There are other reasons, including consolidating loan repayments, or moving from a standard variable rate (SVR) to a fixed-rate.

A proactive conveyancing solicitor in Chichester will complete the conveyancing quickly, and move you to the better rate sooner. With the Bank of England base rate now at 0.5% (May 2018), fast conveyancing can be a crucial factor in securing the rate you want.

The property lawyer will represent both you and your new lender to certify the lender's interests are protected and that the new interest in the property is registered correctly.

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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