Updated: October 12, 2018

Cockermouth conveyancing solicitor fees and costs

No Move, No Fee conveyancing in Cockermouth

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

Are Cockermouth conveyancing fees and costs fixed?

Some conveyancing solicitors in Cockermouth offer services on a fees per hour basis. Some solicitors will complete the work on a fixed 'No Move, No Fee' basis. Our solicitors work on a guaranteed fixed conveyancing fee basis, with no unexpected, additional costs. Your conveyancing quote will explain exactly what you will be charged when your sale or purchase goes through.

Are there any other costs in addition to conveyancing fees?

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

Disbursements are fees that a property lawyer must pay to other companies during the process of buying or selling your home, such as property searches or office copies and title plans.

See: How much should conveyancing fees cost?

How much will the total Cockermouth solicitor conveyancing fees be?

Conveyancing fees in Cockermouth will not vary, wherever you are buying or selling in the UK. There may, however, be some variation in certain disbursements. For example, Local Authority Search fees can vary and additional region-specific searches, such as a commons registration search, may be needed.

For standard conveyancing transactions, the fees we quote are the fees you pay. With Quittance Conveyancing, there are no hidden fees or surprises in the small print. Calculate the conveyancing fees for your move, with our conveyancing fees calculator: Click here

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

Conveyancing - Buying a property in Cockermouth

The legal work for a property buyer needs the conveyancing solicitor in Cockermouth to consider a wide range of issues. Examples of such factors can range from defective property title (e.g. grant of reservation of rights) to commonhold issues affecting the future saleability of the property.

The buyer's lawyer will report their findings back to the buyer, solve outstanding issues and ensure that the change of ownership is registered at the Land Registry.

This section of the article considers the types of residential property which could be of concern to people who need conveyancing solicitors in Cockermouth for a purchase.

Your Cockermouth conveyancing solicitor must be lender-approved

Regardless of whether your mortgage is with a niche mortgage lender like the Furness Building Society or a large lender such as the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS), before choosing a conveyancing solicitor in Cockermouth it is essential that you check that they can represent your mortgage lender.

Quite a few lenders are only prepared to work with a select list (referred to as a 'panel') of legal firms. If a conveyancer is unable to act for your mortgage lender, the lender will require a second law firm to complete the legal work.

The buyer will be expected to pay this alternate solicitor's fees and significant delays to your move could occur.

Neglecting to check your conveyancing lawyer's lender panel status can mean significant delays.

Quittance Conveyancing can perform the conveyancing for all banks and building societies.

Searches (Allerdale Borough Council)

Residential property searches are enquiries made of public bodies by Cockermouth conveyancing solicitors to provide information about the property being purchased.

Mortgagees will also require conveyancing searches to be obtained. These include:

Local Authority (LA) searchexposes issues like road schemes that could affect the property
Environmental searchreveals contaminated land, landfill sites and flooding or subsidence within 500m of the property.
Drainage & Water searchidentifies whether the owner or local authority must pay for the maintenance of water mains and sewers
Chancel repair liabilitydescribes the insurance to protect against any liability to the local parish for repairs.

Further searches, such as an HS2 search or a disadvantaged area search, may also be referred to depending on the contents of the standard searches.

Purchasers should anticipate a wait of roughly 11 weeks for LA searches delivered by Allerdale Borough Council, so quicker regulated searches will be advisable.

Finding planning permissions

Office copies will also be applied for from HMLR by your conveyancing solicitor. This helps to find any potential issues, such as the title plan showing only very general boundaries or that a restrictive covenant has been breached.

Allerdale Borough Council Council Tax

The amount of council tax a homeowner in Cockermouth will pay to Allerdale Borough Council will depend on the property's value and the number of residents. For example, for an average Band B property in Cockermouth, the council tax payable would be £1,400.

A conveyancing solicitor in Cockermouth will inform the purchaser of the home's tax band as soon as they are notified.

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 £1,050.

Other discounts and exemptions may also apply, for example if the property is a second home then a 10% discount will be applied or if the property is a 'granny annexe'.

Band Allerdale Borough Council Tax (2018)
A £1,200
B £1,400
C £1,600
D £1,800
E £2,199
F £2,599
G £2,999
H £3,599

Can I challenge the council tax banding?

Contact the VOA for more information on how to challenge your tax band:

Valuation Office Agency
Stocklund House
Castle Street

The Valuation Office Agency (VOA) should reassess a property's band on request. Councils prefer that this be done within six months of buying a property.

Stamp Duty on Cockermouth properties

It is the responsibility of the purchaser's conveyancing solicitor to handle the tax return process for the purchase.

When buying a home, SDLT will probably need to be paid if the property is valued at over £125,000.

Quittance's specialist post-completion team will ensure that the complicated SDLT1 form is completed and submitted to HMRC without delay.

The following table illustrates SDLT examples for properties in Cockermouth:

  Average sale price (2018 to date) Stamp Duty
Average price £241,936 £2,338.72
Average price (detached) £322,508 £6,125.40
Average new build £305,579 £5,278.95
Following a change in April 2016, a higher rate of 3% is applied for purchases of additional property. Therefore, if a homeowner in Cockermouth bought a second property for the average price of £241,936 the SDLT would be £12,096.80.

Stamp duty relief for first-time buyers in Cockermouth

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

Cockermouth conveyancing solicitors will ensure the right amount is calculated.

Buying a flat? Leasehold conveyancing in Cockermouth

New build site

Buying a leasehold house or flat can be complex, compared to purchasing a freehold property. There are many legal issues that may be lying in wait for the unsuspecting purchaser, including:

  • unfair developer practices
  • onerous covenants
  • spiralling ground rents
Poor leasehold guidance, from a property lawyer with only freehold experience, could have serious financial implications.

If you are planning to purchase a leasehold property, a competent conveyancing solicitor in Cockermouth will consider potential leasehold issues, for example reviewing the lease itself (many leases are decades old), dealing with freeholders and managing agents and current-year service charge estimates.

Make sure that you are fully-informed regarding your planned purchase thanks to our team of leasehold conveyancing solicitors.

Buying a 'New Build' property in Cockermouth?

New build building site

The average cost of a new build in Cockermouth is £305,579. 5 new build houses and flats have been bought in Cockermouth in 2018 so far.

Acquiring a new build property is generally more complex than 'standard conveyancing'. Therefore a conveyancing solicitor in Cockermouth must be aware of local Cockermouth issues and will examine a number of areas, like dealing with lender conditions and ensuring compliance with planning regulations.

Our team of new build conveyancers deliver an independent view of the legal title of the house or flat, looking out for factors ranging from unfair leasehold conditions to an assessment of other risks, such as future local development.

Cumbria Conservation areas

Whether you are looking for a rural setting or Georgian architecture, moving to a conservation area can ensure that the street's unique character is protected. However, conservation area restrictions will affect your home.

These constraints could include:

  • A prohibition on the removal of front boundary walls
  • Restrictions preventing the installation of VELUX windows
  • Restrictions on side or two-storey extensions

The new owner could be ordered to pay for necessary changes to bring a property in line with current regulations, even where the alterations were made by the previous owner.

Parts of Cockermouth are within a conservation area governed by the Allerdale local planning authority (LPA). Your conveyancing solicitor will confirm whether the property you are buying is located in one of Cockermouth's conservation areas.

Conveyancing - Selling a property in Cockermouth

The conveyancing process on a sale of a home is less demanding than when purchasing. The purchaser carries out detailed research on the property. Conveyancing solicitors in Cockermouth acting for the seller, however, simply collates requested paperwork (e.g. warranties and certificates) and replies to the solicitor's standard and additional enquiries .

What could put your home sale at risk?

Properties will frequently have a range of legal problems (for example having a defective lease) that can frustrate the conveyancing process.

Property experts will generally advise to sellers that they handle any such problems as soon as they come to light.

Recommended reading:

Read more helpful advice for sellers here.

Leasehold conveyancing for a sale

The conveyancing process for a leasehold property is much more technical than for a freehold house.

The complexities of leasehold mean conveyancing solicitors in Cockermouth must undertake additional tasks. This can involve requesting the latest service charge and ground rent statement or details of any required deed of covenant.

To reduce delays, it is recommended that you contact a leasehold-specialist lawyer as soon as possible, and ideally before marketing the property,.

What if you are already acting for the other side?

SRA rules prevent the same solicitor from working on behalf of both sides in a property sale and purchase. However, a CLC-regulated conveyancer, can act for both parties.

If you are buying or selling a Cockermouth property, and a Quittance solicitor is carrying out the legal work for the other side, you may want to instruct a property solicitor firm in Cockermouth to undertake your legal work.

Local Cockermouth conveyancing solicitor directory

  • Bell Park Kerridge Limited, 4 Main Street, Cockermouth, Cumbria, CA13 9LQ
  • Milburns Solicitors Limited, 3-5 Main Street, Cockermouth, Cumbria, CA13 9LE
  • Brockbank Curwen Cain and Hall Limited, Norham House, 71 Main Street, Cockermouth, Cumbria, CA13 9JS
  • Burnetts, 3c Lakeland Business Park, Lamplugh Road, Cockermouth, Cumbria, CA13 0QT

Conveyancing - Remortgaging a property in Cockermouth

Homeowners remortgage their home for a variety of reasons, for example getting onto a longer fixed-rate term, or consolidating loan repayments. The main reason, however, is to secure a lower interest rate.

You can enjoy the benefits of a lower rate faster with a more efficient conveyancing solicitor in Cockermouth, reducing the time the conveyancing takes to complete. With the base rate now at 0.5% (May 2018) and the future of interest rates uncertain, fast conveyancing can be a crucial factor in getting the mortgage rate you want.

It is key that your property lawyer can also act for your chosen mortgage provider. Our conveyancers are on the panel for all major lenders, so whether you are switching to a fixed-rate mortgage with Lloyds Bank or to a fixed-rate mortgage with the Dudley Building Society, Quittance 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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