Updated: October 12, 2018

Croydon conveyancing solicitor fees and costs

No Move, No Fee conveyancing in Croydon

Conveyancing solicitor fees will be paid conveyancing solicitors in Croydon for carrying out the legal work for a property transaction.

Are Croydon conveyancing fees and costs fixed?

Some conveyancing solicitors in Croydon carry out the legal work on a fees per hour basis. Some conveyancers will complete the work for a fixed fee (or 'No Move, No Fee'). Quittance's conveyancing solicitors work on a fixed No Move, No Fee basis, with no unexpected, additional costs. Your conveyancing quote will set out what you will be charged when your sale or purchase goes through.

Besides conveyancing fees, what other costs are there?

You must cover the cost of any 'disbursements', in addition to the solicitor's conveyancing fees.

Disbursements are the third-party costs that your conveyancer will pass on to you at the end of the conveyancing process. These include costs like telegraphic transfer fees or Land Registry fees.

See: How much should conveyancing fees cost?

How much will the total Croydon solicitor conveyancing fees be?

Conveyancing solicitor fees in Croydon will not vary. However, there may be some variation in certain disbursements. For example, additional region-specific searches, e.g. a historic mining search, may be needed and council search fees will vary.

There are no hidden fees or costs to be paid with Quittance Conveyancing. For a standard sale or purchase, the conveyancing fee 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 fees were cheaper - less than half the Estate Agent's recommended solicitor's fees

Conveyancing - Buying a property in Croydon

Croydon is one of the largest commercial districts outside Central London. Situated only 10 miles south of Charing Cross, Croydon is an easy commute into central London.

Recent and imminent developments have transformed the town into a major shopping hub. A new 1.4bn pound Westfield shopping centre was announced in late 2017, and it is anticipated that gentrification of the area is likely to push property prices up.

Although central London and Gatwick airport are only a 15-minute train journey from East Croydon rail station, to its south-east the town has easy access to the rural area of the North Downs and the Pilgrim's Way long distance footpath.

Conveyancing for buyers

When carrying out the conveyancing for a property purchase, the Croydon conveyancing solicitor will carry out due diligence on the tenure and investigate the legal ownership rights or 'title' of the property and report back to the purchaser and the mortgage lender (if applicable).

Following their enquiries the conveyancer will offer professional advice and will deal with any legal problems and confirm that the legal title passes to the new owner.

This article examines the aspects of the buying process for conveyancing solicitors in Croydon where a deeper understanding of the legal technicalities is needed.

Your Croydon conveyancing solicitor must be lender-approved

Before you appoint a Croydon conveyancing solicitor, you must confirm that they can act in the interests of your lender, whether you are getting a mortgage from the Skipton Building Society, Britannia or any other lender.

The majority of banks and building societies only accept a select list (referred to as a 'panel') of legal firms that meet strict criteria. If your conveyancer can't act for your lender, the lender will likely require an alternative legal firm to carry out the legal work.

The purchaser will usually need to pay this substitute lawyer's costs, and the conveyancing process can take much longer.

Not checking your conveyancing solicitor's lender panel status can frustrate the process.

Quittance Conveyancing are on the panel of all banks and other lenders.

Residential Property Searches (Croydon Borough Council)

Searches are enquiries made of government bodies by Croydon conveyancing solicitors to give details about the home you want to buy.

These searches include the local authority (LA) search, drainage & water search, environmental search and chancel repair liability.

Additional searches, such as a tin mining search or a geological search, may also be referred to in the standard search results.

Property purchasers will have to endure a wait of roughly 6 weeks for Local Authority searches delivered by The London Borough of Croydon, so your solicitor will instead order faster regulated searches.

Checking planning status

The conveyancing solicitor acting for the buyer will get the Title Register from HM Land Registry. This will help to reveal any potential issues, such as restrictive covenants governing the use of the property or discrepancies with the filed plan.

London Borough of Croydon Council Tax

London Borough of Croydon calculate your council tax based on various criteria e.g. the number of people living at the property and the value of the property as determined by the VOA in 1991. E.g. the occupier of a Band C property in the London Borough of Croydon area would pay annual council tax of £1,455.

Croydon conveyancing solicitors will inform a buyer of the home's council tax band once they are themselves 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 reduces the tax due to 75% which would equal £1,091.

Other discounts and exemptions could also apply, for example if the property is a second home then a 10% discount will be applied or where an inhabitant is an 18 year old for whom child benefit is payable.

Band London Borough of Croydon Tax (2018)
A £1,091
B £1,273
C £1,455
D £1,637
E £2,001
F £2,365
G £2,728
H £3,274

Can you challenge the council tax bracket?

To challenge your banding contact:

Valuation Office Agency
Unicorn House
28 Elmfield Rd
Bromley
BR1 1LR
Kent

In the financial year 2016/17, 90 council tax challenges were made, and 30 saw a reduction.

Stamp Duty on Croydon properties

SDLT is paid to HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) by completing an SDLT1 form. The form is lengthy and complex.

Stamp Duty Land Tax works in a similar fashion to income tax insofar as a buyer will pay progressively more tax for a higher-value home.

Quittance's investment in the latest integrated conveyancing case management system means that HMRC filing complications are a thing of the past.

See Stamp Duty Land Tax examples for homes in Croydon:

  Average sale price (February 2018) SDLT
Average price £480,920 £14,046.00
Average price (detached) £782,472 £29,123.60
Average new build £390,530 £9,526.50

Stamp duty relief for first-time buyers in Croydon

In November 2017, the Chancellor announced that first-time buyers would be exempt from paying stamp duty on residential properties below £300k. Homeowners must pay a higher rate of SDLT when buying a second home. E.g. if a second home was bought for £480,920 then the SDLT including the surcharge would be £38,473.60. .

Croydon conveyancing solicitors should confirm the right tax is paid.

Buying a flat? Leasehold conveyancing in Croydon

New build site

Data suggests that over 100,000 UK property owners face property leases with unreasonable lease clauses. Ground rent multipliers, sub-letting restrictions and undisclosed major works are only some of the frequent complications awaiting the unsuspecting buyer.

Serious consequences can result from an inexperienced conveyancing solicitor's misguided leasehold advice.

A experienced conveyancing solicitor in Croydon will investigate aspects of the leasehold purchase, e.g. absent freeholders, reviewing the lease itself (many leases are decades old) and flats with varying lease terms.

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

Buying a 'New Build' property in Croydon?

House being built

The average purchase price of a new build home in Croydon is £419,649, based on data published by Her Majesty's Land Registry. 25 new build houses and flats have been bought in Croydon in 2018 so far.

The legal side of buying a new build is more involved than any other type of conveyancing. To prevent difficulties arising a Croydon conveyancing solicitor needs to be mindful of local Croydon considerations and should check a range of issues, including investigating developer incentives and spotting incomplete agreements for roads and sewers.

Our specialist team of new build conveyancers deliver an accurate and truly impartial assessment of the legal title of the house or flat, looking out for considerations like the home's future mortgageability and an assessment of other risks, such as flood risk.

Conservation areas

Your conveyancing solicitor will check if the residential property you are buying is in one of Croydon's conservation areas. If it is, the home will be affected by certain restrictions. Called Article 4 directions, these constraints may include restrictions on the removal of front boundary walls, restrictions on the use of external insulation or limitations on new outbuildings.

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

Croydon conservation areas include Parish Church, Central Croydon and Beulah Hill. Your conveyancing solicitor will address whether your planned purchase is located one of Croydon's conservation areas.

Conveyancing - Selling a property in Croydon

The legal process for a sale of a house or flat is less complicated than when buying. The buyer's conveyancer will carry out a comprehensive legal review on the home. Conveyancing solicitors in Croydon acting for the seller just responds to enquiries made by the buyer's solicitor.

What could go wrong?

Hurdles, like not having appropriate warranties, could hinder your move if left unresolved.

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

Recommended reading:

For more conveyancing advice for sellers click here.

Leasehold

Conveyancing for a leasehold flat (houses are rarely leasehold) is significantly more involved than for a freehold property.

Leasehold complexity involves extra work on the part of conveyancing solicitors in Croydon, for example sourcing the latest service charge and ground rent statement, through to a copy of any required license to assign.

It is highly recommended that you instruct a conveyancer as soon as possible, and ideally before marketing the property, to reduce leasehold-related delays.

Can your conveyancing solicitors act for the buyer and the vendor of the same house?

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

You may want to instruct a property solicitor firm in Croydon to carry out your conveyancing, if a Quittance solicitor is acting for the other side.

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Conveyancing - Remortgaging a property in Croydon

Whilst homeowners consider remortgaging for a range of reasons, homeowners generally remortgage their home to lower their monthly repayments.

A proactive conveyancing solicitor in Croydon can reduce the remortgage processing time, perhaps saving you from a payment or two at your old rate. 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 securing the rate you want.

So that they can confirm that the lender's capital is protected, a property lawyer will act for both you and the mortgage provider.

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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