Updated: October 12, 2018

Hemel Hempstead conveyancing solicitor fees

No Move, No Fee conveyancing in Hemel Hempstead

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

How are Hemel Hempstead conveyancing fees calculated?

Our conveyancing solicitors work on a fixed No Sale, No Fee basis with no hidden fees, unlike some other conveyancing solicitors in Hemel Hempstead who will work on an hourly rate. Your quote will explain what you will be charged when your sale or purchase goes through.

What are disbursements?

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 Stamp Duty Land Tax or leasehold information packs.

See: How much should conveyancing fees cost?

How much will the total conveyancing fees in Hemel Hempstead cost?

While conveyancing fees in Hemel Hempstead will be the same as anywhere else in the UK, there may be some variation in certain disbursements. As examples, specific extra searches, such as a Coal Authority search, may be necessary and council search fees will vary.

For a standard home sale or purchase, the fees we quote are the fees you pay. With Quittance Conveyancing, there are no hidden fees or nasty surprises. Calculate the conveyancing fees for your move, with our conveyancing fees calculator: Click here

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

Conveyancing - Buying a property in Hemel Hempstead

Hemel Hempstead was developed as a new town in the 1940s, spreading out from its attractive Tudor market town centre. Recent investments have seen the regeneration of the town centre, linking the old town to the new, plus the building of new homes.

Other regeneration schemes, including the Jellicoe Water Gardens in the town centre, have made Hemel Hempstead more attractive to young families. The town has excellent links to central London, with journey times to Euston around 30 minutes and residents have voted the town one of the happiest places to live.

Conveyancing for buyers

The conveyancing for a homebuyer will need the Hemel Hempstead conveyancing solicitor to consider a wide range of issues. Examples of such issues can range from technical problems relating to the property title to factors affecting the mortgageability (e.g. Japanese Knotweed).

The buyer's property lawyer will report their findings back to the buyer, help with resolving any problems and confirm that the legal title passes to the new owner.

This part of the article examines the property types that involve additional hazards for homebuyers searching for conveyancing solicitors in Hemel Hempstead.

Your Hemel Hempstead conveyancing solicitor must be lender-approved

Homebuyers have many lenders available, from a niche lender like the Hinckley and Rugby Building Society, to a major lender such as the Co-operative Bank. Before selecting a conveyancing solicitor in Hemel Hempstead, whoever you choose, it is critical that you make sure that they can act for your chosen lender.

Quite a few lenders are only happy to work with a selected list (known as a 'panel') of firms that match certain criteria. If your conveyancer cannot act for your chosen lender, the lender will need a different legal firm to act in their interests.

The buyer will be expected to pay this second lawyer's costs, and weeks could be added to the conveyancing process.

Major delays can result from failing to check your conveyancer's lender panel status.

Quittance Conveyancing can perform the conveyancing for all banks and other lenders.

Dacorum Borough Council searches and other searches

Residential property searches are questions asked of various bodies by Hemel Hempstead conveyancing solicitors to provide information about your planned purchase.

Lenders almost always need property searches to be carried out. Required searches will include:

  • Local Authority search - contains information about the property and surrounding area held by Dacorum Borough Council
  • Drainage & Water search - identifies the location of sewers and water mains, and will confirm whether these are maintained by the local council.
  • Environmental search - covers environmental issues within 500m of the property, including flooding, mining subsidence and the proximity of landfill and contaminated land sites.
  • Chancel repair liability - some Hemel Hempstead 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 highways authority search or a ground stability report, may also be advised in the initial search results.

The typical processing time for Residential property searches supplied by Dacorum Borough Council is 12 weeks, so your conveyancer will recommend using a faster search agent.

Checking planning permission status

Office copies will also be applied for from HM Land Registry by your conveyancing solicitor. This will help to reveal planning issues, for example restrictions that limit alterations or errors on the title plan.

Dacorum Borough Council Council Tax

As a homeowner in Hemel Hempstead, the applicable rate of council tax will vary depending on the value of the home (as assessed in 1991) and the number of people living in it. For instance a property in the Dacorum Borough Council area in Band C would pay £1,505 per annum.

A conveyancing solicitor in Hemel Hempstead will inform the purchaser of the property's band once they are made aware.

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 £1,129.

Other discounts and exemptions could also apply, for example unoccupied properties undergoing major repairs or where an inhabitant is an 18 year old for whom child benefit is payable. Newer properties are assessed by the Valuation Office Agency and allocated a council tax band.

Band Dacorum Borough Council Tax (2018)
A £1,129
B £1,317
C £1,505
D £1,694
E £2,070
F £2,446
G £2,823
H £3,387

Can I dispute my council tax rate?

It is possible to challenge the council tax band after moving in. Between April 2016 and April 2017, 30 council tax challenges were made, of which 10 saw a reduction. To appeal contact:

Valuation Office Agency
St. Peters House
45 Victoria St
St. Albans
AL1 3WZ
Hertfordshire

Stamp Duty on Hemel Hempstead properties

Delays and penalties await those who mishandle the stamp duty administration process.

The vast majority of people will have their conveyancing solicitor complete the SDLT1 return on their behalf.

If you are buying a residential property in England,Wales or Northern Ireland then Stamp Duty Land Tax is payable on properties over £125k. In Scotland, the threshold is £145k.

Quittance Conveyancing use the latest case management integration with HMRC to avoid errors and ensure there are no late-filing penalties.

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

  Average selling price (2018 to date) SDLT
Average price £371,580 £8,579.00
Average price (detached) £546,837 £17,341.85
Average new build £121,519 £0.00

Stamp duty relief for first-time buyers in Hemel Hempstead

For first-time buyers, stamp duty is only payable on purchases over £300,000. Higher rates of SDLT apply to buyers of second residential property in the form of a 3% surcharge. For example, if a homeowner bought a second property in Hemel Hempstead for the average price of £371,580 the SDLT would be £29,726.40.

Conveyancing solicitors in Hemel Hempstead will ensure an accurate calculation is made.

Buying a flat? Leasehold conveyancing in Hemel Hempstead

New build site

The potential risks associated with purchasing a leasehold property should be of serious concern. The numerous common problems awaiting the unsuspecting buyer include spiralling ground rents and incomplete management company accounts.

Erroneous leasehold advice, from an inexperienced lawyer, can have serious consequences.

A experienced conveyancing solicitor in Hemel Hempstead will consider possible leasehold issues, such as :

  • reviewing the lease itself (some documents can be centuries old)
  • service charges and whether they have been collected
  • reviewing correspondence between the freeholder and leaseholder
  • changes to the terms of the lease
  • block management regulations that sit outside the lease

Make sure that you are fully-informed regarding your decision to buy a leasehold property thanks to our specialist leasehold conveyancing solicitors.

Buying a 'New Build' property in Hemel Hempstead?

House being built

According to data compiled by the Land Registry, 13 new build homes have been bought in Hemel Hempstead in 2018 so far. The average cost of Hemel Hempstead new build homes is £121,519.

A new-build conveyancing solicitor in Hemel Hempstead needs to be conscious of Hemel Hempstead-specific considerations and the complications associated with new build, e.g. ensuring compliance with planning regulations and handling unreasonable delays.

Our award-winning new build team specialise in helping the buyer get the best possible purchase terms and meeting short developer deadlines.

Conservation areas in Hertfordshire

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

These restrictions can include:

  • Limits on roof terraces
  • Restrictions on dormer windows
  • Requiring consent to alter doors and guttering

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

Your conveyancing solicitor will confirm whether the property you are buying is located in one of Hemel Hempstead's conservation areas.

Conveyancing - Selling a property in Hemel Hempstead

The conveyancing process on a house sale is much easier than when purchasing. The buyer does a thorough legal appraisal into the property and its legal title, whilst conveyancing solicitors in Hemel Hempstead acting for the vendor simply answers the buyer's questions.

Why do sales fall through?

Homes will often come with a broad spectrum of possible difficulties (for example not being connected to the water mains) that can delay your move.

Don't bury your head and hope the buyer's solicitor won't notice - a better course of action will be to get legal advice, face the issues head on, and find a solution as early as possible.

Further reading:

For more conveyancing advice for sellers click here.

Leasehold

Conveyancing for a leasehold flat or house is significantly more complicated than for a more straightforward freehold house.

Hemel Hempstead conveyancing solicitors will also perform extra work. This can involve sourcing all relevant freeholder information, through to a copy of the building's asbestos survey (if required).

It is highly recommended that the seller instruct a lawyer as early as possible to reduce leasehold-related delays.

What if Quittance conveyancers are acting for the other side?

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

You can contact a local Hemel Hempstead conveyancing solicitor firm to carry out your legal work, if a Quittance conveyancer is acting for the other side.

Local Hemel Hempstead conveyancing solicitor directory

  • Richardsons Solicitors, 81a Marlowes, Hemel Hempstead, Hertfordshire, HP1 1LF
  • Witts Moloney Ltd, 3 Marlowes Court, 67 Marlowes, Hemel Hempstead, Hertfordshire, HP1 1LE
  • Carr Richards Solicitors Ltd, Wessex Court, Midland Road, Hemel Hempstead, Hertfordshire, HP2 5BH
  • Highline Solicitors Limited, Innovation House, 39 Mark Road, Hemel Hempstead Industrial Est, Hemel Hempstead, Hertfordshire, HP2 7DN
  • Trinity (Estates) Property Management Ltd, Vantage Point, 23 Mark Road, Hemel Hempstead Industrial Est, Hemel Hempstead, Hertfordshire, HP2 7DN

Conveyancing - Remortgaging a property in Hemel Hempstead

Reducing monthly repayments by finding a lower interest rate is primarily why people opt to remortgage. There are other reasons, for example consolidating debts, or moving from a tracker to a fixed-rate.

Homeowners can benefit from a lower rate faster with a more proactive conveyancing solicitor in Hemel Hempstead. With possible rate rises on the horizon, fast conveyancing can be a contributing factor to getting onto your new rate as quickly as possible.

A property lawyer will need to act for both you and the bank or building society to confirm the interests of the lender are covered.

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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