Updated: October 12, 2018

Havering conveyancing solicitor fees and costs

No Move, No Fee conveyancing in Havering

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

Are Havering conveyancing fees and costs fixed?

Some conveyancing solicitors in Havering work on a cost per hour basis, whereas others work on a fixed fee (or 'No Move, No Fee'). Quittance's conveyancing solicitors work on fixed legal fees (known as 'No Sale, No Fee' or 'No Move, No Fee'), with no hidden extras. Your conveyancing quote will explain what you will pay when your property transaction has completed.

Are there any other costs?

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

Disbursements are the costs incurred by the solicitor on your behalf, such as property searches or leasehold information packs.

See: Complete list of conveyancing fees and disbursements

How much will the total conveyancing fees in Havering cost?

Though conveyancing fees in Havering will usually match prices elsewhere in the UK, there may be some variation in certain disbursements. As examples, Local Authority Search fees can vary and additional region-specific searches, e.g. a mining search, may be needed.

There are no hidden costs or nasty surprises with Quittance. For a standard home sale or purchase, the conveyancing fee we quote is the fee you pay. To calculate your conveyancing fees, try our conveyancing fees quote calculator: Click here

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

Conveyancing - Buying a property in Havering

The principle town in the London Borough of Havering is Romford. Other districts include Hornchurch, Upminster and Rainham.

The housing is mainly suburban development round large areas of protected green space.

Although average house prices have been lower than other Outer London boroughs the last year has seen prices soar with the anticipated arrival of Crossrail. This trend is expected to continue once the full through service from Romford station to central London starts at the end of 2019.

Conveyancing for home buyers

The conveyancing for a home purchase will need a conveyancing solicitor in Havering to consider a wide range of issues. Examples of such factors are lost title deeds and a flying freehold affecting the mortgageability of the home.

The purchaser's solicitor will feed the results of their enquiries back to the buyer and their lender, assist in resolving any issues and register the title in the new owner's name.

The following section offers advice to assist buyers searching for conveyancing solicitors in Havering.

Your Havering conveyancing solicitor must be lender-approved

Regardless of whether you are obtaining a mortgage from Paragon, NatWest or any other lender, before you select a Havering conveyancing solicitor it is vital that you check that they can act on behalf of your mortgage lender.

Your conveyancer may not be able to carry out the legal work on behalf of your mortgage lender, because some lenders are only prepared to work with a select panel of legal practices.

If this is the case, the lender will need a different legal firm to carry out the legal work, and you will then have to cover this alternate solicitor's costs. Adding another solicitor to the process can delay the whole purchase.

Failing to check the lender panel status of your lawyer can mean significant delays.

Quittance Conveyancing are on the panel of all lenders.

Conveyancing Searches (Havering Borough Council)

Property searches (sometimes referred to as 'conveyancing searches') are submitted by Havering conveyancing solicitors to unearth any pertinent information that might compromise how much your home is worth.

Mortgage lenders also expect searches (as set out in the CML Handbook) to be obtained. These include:

Local Authority (LA) searchreveals issues like whether the adjoining road and pavement are publicly maintained
Environmental searchidentifies risks within 500 metres of the property, including flooding subsidence. The search will also reveal nearby landfill sites and contaminated land.
Drainage & Water searchdescribes water mains and sewers, and confirms if these are privately maintained
Chancel repair liabilitydescribes the insurance to protect against any liability owed by Havering properties for local parish repairs.

More pertinent searches, such as a tin mining search or an agricultural search, may also be referred to following the initial searches.

The London Borough of Havering has a typical processing time of 7 weeks for Local Authority searches, so your lawyer will recommend using quicker personal searches.

Finding planning permissions

Office copies will also be applied for from the Land Registry by the conveyancing solicitor acting for the buyer. This will help to expose any issues, for example limits on the development of the property or outbuildings missing from the title plan.

London Borough of Havering Council Tax

Council tax is calculated by London Borough of Havering on property value and the number of people living in the property. For instance for an average Tax Band E home in Havering, the amount due would be £2,027.

Havering conveyancing solicitors will inform the buyer of the property's tax band once they are themselves notified.

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 £1,520.

Other discounts and exemptions could also apply, e.g. a 10% discount for second homes or where an occupation is prohibited by law such as a compulsory purchase order. Property constructed after 1991 is assigned a band by the Valuation Office Agency (VOA).

Band London Borough of Havering Tax (2018)
A £1,105
B £1,290
C £1,474
D £1,658
E £2,027
F £2,395
G £2,763
H £3,316
Contact the VOA for more information on how to challenge your tax band:

Valuation Office Agency
10th Floor
Crown House
Linton Rd
IG11 8HJ

The Valuation Office Agency (VOA) should reassess a property's band on request.

Stamp Duty on Havering properties

If you are buying a residential property in England, Wales or Northern Ireland then you will usually need to pay Stamp Duty Land Tax. Given the complexity of the SDLT1 tax return form, only the confident would attempt to complete and file this with HM Revenue & Customs without a conveyancing solicitor's help.

With Quittance you have the peace of mind that the SDLT1 return is completed correctly and quickly when your purchase completes.

See table below for SDLT examples for homes in Havering:

  Average selling price (2018 to date) Stamp Duty Land Tax
Average price £383,968 £9,198.40
Average price (detached) £531,714 £16,585.70
Average new build £420,000 £11,000.00
Since 1st April 2016, buyers of second homes are subject to a higher SDLT rate of 3%, even if the property is not let out. Following the example above, if a homeowner bought a second property in Havering for the average price of £383,968 the SDLT would be £30,717.44.

Stamp duty relief for first-time buyers in Havering

Since the budget announcement in 2017, if you are a first-time buyer, you only pay stamp duty on property valued at over £300,000.

Conveyancing solicitors in Havering should ensure an accurate calculation is made.

Buying a flat? Leasehold conveyancing in Havering

New build site

The drawbacks of purchasing a leasehold property are of serious concern for leasehold property buyers. Numerous technical issues may be lying in wait for the unsuspecting purchaser, such as:

  • absent freeholders
  • unfair clauses in the lease
  • spiralling ground rents
Serious financial ramifications can result from a solicitor's inaccurate leasehold advice.

If you intend to purchase a property with a lease, a expert conveyancing solicitor in Havering will consider potential leasehold issues, such as :

  • reviewing the lease itself (some leases are over 100 years old)
  • current-year service charge estimates
  • absent freeholders
  • block management regulations that sit outside the lease
  • residents' memoranda and articles of association

Quittance Conveyancing's leasehold conveyancing solicitors will ensure that you are fully-informed regarding your planned purchase.

Buying a 'New Build' property in Havering?

Building site

Based on local data compiled by Her Majesty's Land Registry, 1 new build homes have been bought in Havering in 2018 so far. The average sale price of a new build property in Havering is £420,000.

The legal side of purchasing a new build is more complex than any other type of conveyancing. To prevent difficulties arising a Havering conveyancing solicitor must be aware of Havering-specific issues and must consider a range of factors, such as dealing with failures to arrange warranty provider inspections and ensuring new estate roads are adopted.

Our award-winning team of conveyancers specialise in representing buyers to achieve the best outcome and working to developer exchange timeframes.

Conservation areas

When acting for the buyer of a home in Havering, a conveyancing solicitor will need to check whether the house is in one of Havering's conservation areas. If it is, the home is affected by restrictions. Called Article 4 directions, these restrictions can include restrictions on the removal of front boundary walls, limitations on new outbuildings or general restrictions governing the use of unsympathetic materials.

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.

Conservation areas in Havering include North Ockendon, Corbets Tey and Romford. Your conveyancing solicitor will confirm whether the property you are buying is located in one of Havering's conservation areas.

Conveyancing - Selling a property in Havering

The legal side of a house sale is less complicated than for a property purchase. When property changes hands, the responsibility is on the buyer to satisfy themselves that the property's title is legally sound.

On the other side of the transaction, conveyancing solicitors in Havering acting for the vendor only need to answer any enquiries made by the buyer's solicitor.

What could go wrong?

Obstacles, such as not having full title or being situated on an unadopted road, have the potential to slow or frustrate the sale conveyancing process if they are ignored.

Property experts almost always advise that sellers address such issues immediately.

Recommended reading:

Read more helpful advice for sellers here.

Leasehold flats

The legal work for a leasehold flat is quite a lot more difficult than for a freehold house.

Havering conveyancing solicitors must usually carry out further legal work, such as getting the latest service charge and ground rent statement, through to the minutes of the last AGM (if there is a management company).

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

Can Quittance conveyancers act for both parties?

Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) rules ban the same solicitor from working on behalf of both sides in a property sale and purchase. However, CLC-regulated conveyancers, can act for both the buyer and the seller.

If you are buying or selling a house or flat in Havering, and we are doing the legal work for the other side, you can contact a local Havering conveyancing solicitor firm to carry out your legal work.


Conveyancing - Remortgaging a property in Havering

Benefitting from a lower interest rate to reduce monthly expenses is usually why people remortgage. There are other reasons, for example wanting to overpay when the lender refuses, or borrowing more to help pay for an extension.

You would typically benefit from a better rate earlier with a more efficient conveyancing solicitor in Havering, shortening the time the conveyancing takes. With the future of interest rates uncertain, fast conveyancing can be a critical factor in securing your preferred rate.

It is vitally important that your property lawyer is also able to act for your new mortgage provider. Our conveyancing team are panel members of all major banks and building societies. So no matter whether you are moving to a tracker with the Halifax or to a capped-rate mortgage with the Harpenden Building Society, we 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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