Updated: October 12, 2018

Heathfield conveyancing solicitor fees and costs

No Move, No Fee conveyancing in Heathfield

Conveyancing solicitor fees are the amounts you pay your Heathfield conveyancing solicitor for handling the legal work for your move.

Are Heathfield conveyancing fees and costs fixed?

We work on a fixed No Sale, No Fee conveyancing basis with no unexpected, additional costs, unlike some other conveyancing solicitors in Heathfield who offer services on an hourly rate. Your quote will explain exactly what you will be charged when your property transaction has completed.

Besides conveyancing fees, what other costs are there?

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

Disbursements are the costs and expenses a solicitor needs to pay out on behalf of a client. These include costs like office copies and title plans or bankruptcy searches.

See: Complete list of conveyancing fees and disbursements

How much will the total Heathfield solicitor conveyancing fees be?

Heathfield conveyancing solicitor fees will be the same as anywhere else in the country. However, there may be some variation in certain disbursements. As examples, specific extra searches, such as utilities searches, may be necessary and Local Authority (LA) Search fees will vary.

For a standard conveyancing transaction, the conveyancing fee we quote is the fee you pay. With Quittance, there are no hidden costs or nasty surprises. Work out the conveyancing fees for your move, with our conveyancing calculator: Click here

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

Conveyancing - Buying a property in Heathfield

In carrying out the legal work for a homebuyer, the conveyancing solicitor in Heathfield will carry out due diligence on the tenure and investigate the title of the property and report back in detail to the buyer and the lender.

Once their enquiries are complete the conveyancer will give advice and will offer practical solutions and ensure the title is transferred to the new owner.

This article considers the property types that carry additional risk for homebuyers who want conveyancing solicitors in Heathfield.

Your Heathfield conveyancing solicitor must be lender-approved

Regardless of whether you are obtaining a mortgage from Barclays Bank, the Darlington Building Society or any other lender, before you instruct a Heathfield conveyancing solicitor you need to check that they can act for your mortgage lender.

Your solicitor may be unable to act for your mortgage lender, because some banks and building societies only accept a select list (referred to as a 'panel') of solicitors or licensed conveyancers.

If this is the case, the lender will likely require a second law firm to complete the legal work, and you will usually need to pay this second lawyer's fees. This can mean the process takes much longer.

Failing to check your conveyancing lawyer's lender panel status can result in serious delays.

Quittance Conveyancing are approved members of all lender panels.

Wealden District Council searches

Searches are applied for by Heathfield conveyancing solicitors to help spot any pertinent information that might possibly have an impact on the value of your property.

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

Additional searches, such as a Crossrail search or a more detailed plan search, may also be referred to in the initial LA and Environmental searches.

Wealden District Council has an estimated processing time of 8 weeks for Local Authority searches, so quicker regulated searches will be advisable.

Planning searches

The buyer's conveyancing solicitor also obtains an 'Official Copy of the Title Register' from the Land Registry, assisting with the identification of potential planning issues, for example the title plan showing only very general boundaries or restrictive covenants governing the use of the property.

Wealden District Council Council Tax

The amount of council tax a homeowner in Heathfield will pay to Wealden District Council will depend on the property's value and the number of residents. For instance for an average Band C home in Heathfield, the council tax payable would be £1,720 per year.

Conveyancing solicitors in Heathfield will inform the purchaser of the property's band as soon as they are 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 £1,290.

Other discounts and exemptions could also apply, e.g. unoccupied properties undergoing major repairs or where an inhabitant is an 18 year old for whom child benefit is payable. The Valuation Office Agency assess council tax bands for new build properties, and where the owner has requested a revaluation.

Band Wealden District Council Tax (2018)
A £1,290
B £1,505
C £1,720
D £1,935
E £2,365
F £2,795
G £3,225
H £3,870

Can I appeal against my band?

To challenge your banding contact:

Valuation Office Agency
St. Annes House
2 St. Annes Rd
Eastbourne
BN21 3LG
East Sussex

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

Stamp Duty on Heathfield properties

The current SDLT threshold is £125k in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. After a residential property sale has exchanged and completed, the purchaser's conveyancing solicitor will ensure that the stamp duty is paid to HMRC.

Quittance Conveyancing is able to administer the SDLT process faster and more efficiently than ever, using integrated online systems.

See examples for typical local properties:

  Average sale price (2017) Stamp Duty
Average price £373,831 £8,691.55
Average price (detached) £543,816 £17,190.80
Average new build £274,714 £3,735.70

Stamp duty relief for first-time buyers in Heathfield

Since Nov 2017, first-time buyers only need to pay stamp duty on properties valued over £300k. Since 1st April 2016, buyers of second homes are subject to a 3% surcharge, even if the home is not let out. So if a second property was bought for £373,831 then the SDLT total will be £29,906.48.

Conveyancing solicitors in Heathfield will confirm an accurate calculation is made.

Buying a flat? Leasehold conveyancing in Heathfield

New build site

The drawbacks associated with buying a leasehold flat in the UK are recognised. Spiralling ground rents, excessive freehold premiums and sub-letting restrictions are only some of the many potential difficulties lying in wait for an uninformed purchaser.

Erroneous leasehold advice, from a solicitor with little specialist experience, could lead to serious consequences.

A expert conveyancing solicitor in Heathfield will consider possible leasehold issues, e.g. service charge records from the last three years, reserve funds and absent freeholders.

Quittance Conveyancing's team of leasehold conveyancing solicitors will work to ensure that you are fully-informed regarding your decision to buy a leasehold property.

Buying a 'New Build' property in Heathfield?

House under construction

The average cost of new builds in Heathfield is £274,714, (HM Land Registry figures). 22 brand new properties were purchased in Heathfield last year.

A new-build conveyancing solicitor in Heathfield must be well-versed in local Heathfield considerations and new build's added complexities, including ensuring new estate roads are adopted, investigating developer incentives and registering ownership with warranty providers, including NHBC Buildmark, LABC New Home Warranty and HAPM.

Our expert new build team provide an independent view of the property's legal status, and in particular factors ranging from the home's future marketability to 'doubling' ground rent and service charges (where applicable).

Conservation areas in East Sussex

Moving to a street located in a conservation area can ensure the local character is unlikely to change. However, conservation area conditions will affect your house.

Called Article 4 directions, these restrictions can include:

  • Restrictions on the removal or addition of front boundary walls
  • Restrictions on the installation of skylights
  • Limits on extensions (even if within Permitted Development rights)

The local council can order any non-compliant alterations to a property to be changed or removed, such as removing wall render or paint.

Quittance's conveyancing solicitors will address whether the home you plan to buy is located in a conservation area in Heathfield.

Conveyancing - Selling a property in Heathfield

The legal work involved in a sale of a house or flat is much simpler than when purchasing. The buyer's solicitor undertakes extensive research on the property and its legal title, whereas conveyancing solicitors in Heathfield acting for the seller merely collects all documents and information relating to the property and answers the buyer's questions .

What could put your sale at risk?

A property can be burdened by potential roadblocks (for example a problem with the roof) that can slow or frustrate a transaction.

It is not recommended that you put off finding a solution as solicitors are trained to unearth any such issues. Instead, get advice, square up to the issue(s), and find a solution promptly.

Useful reading:

Read more helpful advice for sellers here.

Sale conveyancing for a leasehold property

Conveyancing for a leasehold flat is much more protracted than for a freehold house.

Conveyancing solicitors in Heathfield will also carry out additional work. This can involve applying for ground rent details, through to a copy of the buildings insurance for the common parts.

To speed up the leasehold conveyancing process, it is strongly advised that the seller instructs a lawyer with leasehold experience as soon as possible.

Can your conveyancing solicitors act for both sides?

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

You could contact a local Heathfield conveyancing solicitor firm to handle your legal work, if a Quittance conveyancing solicitor is carrying out the legal work for the other side.

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Conveyancing - Remortgaging a property in Heathfield

People remortgage for all sorts of reasons, including the current mortgage deal coming to an end, or releasing funds to help kids get on the property ladder. The most common reason, however, is simply to get a better rate.

You should be able to enjoy a better rate sooner with a more efficient conveyancing solicitor in Heathfield. With rate rises hard to predict, fast conveyancing can be a critical factor in getting the mortgage rate you want.

To confirm that the interests of the lender are covered, the property lawyer handling your remortgage 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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