Updated: October 12, 2018

Greenwich conveyancing solicitor fees and costs

No Move, No Fee conveyancing in Greenwich

Conveyancing solicitor fees will be paid to your Greenwich conveyancing solicitor for the legal work associated with moving home.

Are Greenwich conveyancing fees and costs fixed?

Quittance's conveyancing solicitors work on fixed legal fees (known as 'No Sale, No Fee' or 'No Move, No Fee') with no hidden extras, unlike some other conveyancing solicitors in Greenwich who carry out the legal work on a price per hour basis. Your quote will set out what you will pay when your sale or purchase completes.

Are there any other costs?

You will have to pay any 'disbursements', in addition to conveyancing solicitor fees.

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

See: How much should conveyancing fees cost?

How much will the total Greenwich solicitor conveyancing fees be?

Although conveyancing fees in Greenwich will usually match prices elsewhere in the UK, there can be variation in the disbursements required. For example, additional region-specific searches, such as utilities searches, may be needed and Local Authority Search fees can vary.

For a standard home sale or purchase, the conveyancing fee we quote is the fee you pay. With Quittance Conveyancing, there are no hidden fees or surprises in the small print. Work out the conveyancing fees for your move, with our conveyancing 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 Greenwich

"Caveat emptor", or "buyer beware", was a fundamental principle of property law in England and Wales. This maxim no longer applies, however, it is still the duty of a buyer's solicitor to investigate the house or flat they plan to buy.

A conveyancing solicitor in Greenwich will give advice after making their enquiries, iron out any legal issues and register the title in the new owner's name.

The content below provides invaluable advice for people searching for conveyancing solicitors in Greenwich for a purchase.

Your Greenwich conveyancing solicitor must be lender-approved

Regardless of whether your mortgage is with a niche lender like Paragon or a major lender such as Tesco Bank, before you choose a conveyancing solicitor in Greenwich you must confirm that they can act in the interests of your lender.

Most mortgage lenders will only accept a select panel of firms. If a solicitor cannot act for your lender, the lender will need a different legal firm to complete the legal work.

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

Your property transaction can be seriously delayed if you fail to check your property lawyer's lender panel status.

Our solicitors are on the panel of all banks and building societies.

Searches (Greenwich Borough Council)

Property searches will be applied for by Greenwich conveyancing solicitors to help to identify problems that might compromise how much your house or flat will be worth.

Banks and building societies typically also require searches (as set out in the CML Handbook) to be obtained. These include:

SearchDescription
Local Authority (LA) searchcontains information about the property and surrounding area held by Greenwich Borough Council
Drainage & Water searchconfirms who is responsible for the upkeep of the water pipes and drainage that serve the property.
Environmental searchidentifies risks within 500 metres of the property, including flooding subsidence. The search will also reveal nearby landfill sites and contaminated land.
Chancel repair liabilitysome Greenwich property may still owe a liability to the local parish for repairs. Insurance can be taken out to protect against this risk.

Additional searches, such as a Crossrail search or a commons registration search, may also be recommended in the standard search results.

The approximate delivery time for Residential property searches ordered from the London Borough of Greenwich is 16 weeks, so quicker regulated searches will be recommended.

Checking planning permission status

The buyer's conveyancing solicitor will apply for an 'Official Copy of the Title Register' from HM Land Registry. This will help to identify any potential issues, such as limits on the development of the property or discrepancies with the filed plan.

London Borough of Greenwich Council Tax

The council tax paid by a homeowner is based on various factors e.g. the size and character of the home and the value of the home as determined by the VOA in 1991 (or 2003 in Wales). E.g. the occupier of a Band B home in the London Borough of Greenwich area would pay annual council tax of £1,112.

Conveyancing solicitors in Greenwich will inform the buyer of the home's council tax band as soon as they are made aware.

If the property is unoccupied for over 24 months, the owner will pay 150% of the relevant rate. Single person discount reduces the tax due to 75%, which would equal £834.

Other discounts and exemptions may also apply, e.g. where the home is empty or unfurnished for a maximum of 60 days or if the property is left empty by someone receiving medical treatment. The Valuation Office Agency (VOA) work out council tax bandings for new build homes, and where the owner has requested a revaluation.

Band London Borough of Greenwich Tax (2018)
A £953
B £1,112
C £1,271
D £1,429
E £1,747
F £2,065
G £2,382
H £2,859

Can I challenge my valuation?

A property owner can also apply for their property to be reassessed, and if the valuation is revised down, they may receive a refund. To challenge your banding contact:

Valuation Office Agency
Cityside House
40 Adler St
London
E1 1EE

Stamp Duty on Greenwich properties

If the purchase price of the residential property you intend to buy is over the £125k threshold, you must pay stamp duty. Obtaining and completing the SDLT1 return from HMRC is difficult but not impossible for a typical buyer. Usually, however, the form is completed by the property lawyer to avoid penalties or delays.

Quittance's case management software integrates with electronic filing gateway to ensure that the stamp duty is paid in full quickly.

See table below for Stamp Duty Land Tax examples for properties in Greenwich:

  Average selling price (2018 to date) SDLT
Average price £452,381 £12,619.05
Average price (detached) £1,342,310 £77,981.00
Average new build £679,337 £23,966.85
Homeowners must pay a higher rate of SDLT when purchasing a second home. So if a second home was bought for £452,381 then the stamp duty total will be £36,190.48.

Stamp duty relief for first-time buyers in Greenwich

As from November 2017, first-time buyers will not have to pay any stamp duty if the purchase price is below £300,000.

Conveyancing solicitors in Greenwich will ensure the right tax is paid.

Buying a flat? Leasehold conveyancing in Greenwich

New build site

Research suggests that over 100,000 UK property owners face property leases with unreasonable lease clauses. The many potential complications lying in wait for the unsuspecting purchaser include restrictions on the use of the property, overpriced managing agent packs and doubling ground rents.

Bad or incomplete leasehold advice, from a conveyancing solicitor lacking in specialist knowledge, could have costly, long-term consequences.

A expert conveyancing solicitor in Greenwich will consider potential leasehold issues, e.g. managing agent practices, sometimes ancient and arcane lease documents and flats with varying lease terms.

Ensure that you are fully-informed regarding your planned purchase with our leasehold conveyancing solicitors.

Buying a 'New Build' property in Greenwich?

Building site

The average cost of Greenwich new build properties is £679,337, according to data gathered by the Land Registry. 34 new build properties have been bought in Greenwich in 2018 so far.

A new-build conveyancing solicitor in Greenwich must be familiar with local issues and new build-specific issues, including verifying rights of access and dealing with delays associated with off-plan.

Our expert new build team provide an impartial view of the legal title of the property, with a close eye on concerns like unfair leasehold conditions and possible freehold acquisition traps.

Conservation areas in London

When acting for the purchaser of a property in Greenwich, a conveyancing solicitor will check if the property is in one of Greenwich's conservation areas. If it is, the property will be affected by specific constraints. These constraints, referred to as Article 4 Directions, could include anything from limitations on skylights, to restrictions preventing paving over the front garden.

If a property is in breach, the local planning authority could order you (as the new owner) to pay for returning the property to a compliant state, even if the changes were made by the previous owner.

Conservation areas in Greenwich include Progress Estate, Deptford High Street and Greenwich Park. Quittance's conveyancing solicitors will address whether the home you plan to buy is located in a conservation area in Greenwich.

Conveyancing - Selling a property in Greenwich

The legal work involved in a house sale is much simpler than when buying. With a purchase, the onus is on the buyer to confirm that the property's title is legally sound and meets their mortgage lender's criteria.

On the other hand, when selling, conveyancing solicitors in Greenwich acting for the seller for the most part just answer enquiries made on behalf of the buyer.

How to minimise the risk of your sale falling through

A house or flat will often come with a broad spectrum of possible complications (such as a problem with the roof) which could prevent a purchase from completing.

Property specialists generally advise that vendors face any such problems head on and fix them.

Useful reading:

Read more conveyancing advice for sellers.

Leasehold flats

The conveyancing process for a leasehold flat (leasehold houses are uncommon) is significantly more technical than for a freehold house.

Conveyancing solicitors in Greenwich will also carry out additional work, and this could include obtaining an up-to-date service charge statement, through to any documentation relating to forfeiture proceedings.

So as to resolve any leasehold-related problems sooner, it is recommended that the vendor contact a property lawyer as soon as an estate agent is chosen.

Can Quittance conveyancers act for both parties?

Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) rules prevent the same conveyancing solicitor from working on behalf of both sides in a house sale. However, conveyancers who are regulated by the CLC, can act for both the buyer and the seller.

If you are buying or selling a house or flat in Greenwich, and a Quittance conveyancer is acting for the other side, you could instruct a property solicitor firm in Greenwich to undertake your conveyancing.

Local Greenwich conveyancing solicitor directory

  • Capital & Oriental Management Limited, 96 Greenwich South Street, London, SE10 8UN
  • Universe Solicitors Limited, 83 Blackheath Road, Greenwich, SE10 8PD

Conveyancing - Remortgaging a property in Greenwich

Homeowners remortgage their home for a variety of reasons, for example releasing equity, or the current mortgage deal coming to an end. The most common reason, however, is to save money with a lower rate.

A proactive conveyancing solicitor in Greenwich will complete the conveyancing quickly, helping you get onto the lower rate earlier. With rate rises anticipated, fast conveyancing can be a crucial factor in getting onto your new rate as quickly as possible.

It is vitally important that your property lawyer can act for your new lender. Our conveyancing team are on the panel for all major UK lenders, so whether you are changing to a lifetime tracker mortgage with the Royal Bank of Scotland or to a joint mortgage with the Yorkshire Bank, our remortgage specialists 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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