Updated: October 12, 2018

Hereford conveyancing solicitor fees

No Move, No Fee conveyancing in Hereford

Conveyancing solicitor fees are the amounts you pay your Hereford conveyancing solicitor for carrying out the legal work for a property transaction.

Do Hereford conveyancing solicitors work on a fixed fee basis?

Our conveyancers work on fixed legal fees (known as 'No Sale, No Fee' or 'No Move, No Fee') with no hidden costs, unlike some other conveyancing solicitors in Hereford who work on an hourly-rate basis. Your conveyancing quote explains all fees and other costs you will be charged when your house or flat sale completes.

What are disbursements?

You will need to budget for '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 managing agent fees or Stamp Duty.

See: How much should conveyancing fees cost?

How much will the total Hereford solicitor conveyancing fees be?

Although conveyancing fees in Hereford will usually match prices elsewhere in the UK, there may be some variation in certain disbursements. As examples, Local Authority (LA) Search fees will vary and additional region-specific searches, such as a flooding search, may be needed.

There are no hidden costs or surprises to be paid with Quittance. For standard conveyancing transactions, the fees we quote are the fees you pay. Work out the conveyancing fees for your move, with our conveyancing calculator: Click here

Quittance's conveyancing fees were considerably cheaper than the average solicitors' fees

Conveyancing - Buying a property in Hereford

The legal work for a property purchase requires a Hereford conveyancing solicitor to consider a wide range of issues. Examples of such factors are problems with the property's title (e.g. adverse possession) and proximity to mining works affecting the future saleability of the property.

The conveyancer will feed the results of their enquiries back to the buyer and their lender, solve outstanding issues and register the title in the new owner's name.

This article sets out useful advice for homebuyers who need conveyancing solicitors in Hereford.

Your Hereford conveyancing solicitor must be lender-approved

Before you choose a Hereford conveyancing solicitor, it is critical that you make sure that they are approved by your chosen lender, whether you are getting a mortgage from the Barnsley Building Society, Barclays Bank or any other lender.

Your solicitor may not be able to carry out the legal work on behalf of your chosen lender, because some lenders are only happy to work with a selected list (their 'panel') of firms.

Should this be the case, the lender will likely need a different solicitor firm to complete the legal work, and you will usually need to pay this substitute solicitor's fees. The additional work can mean the process takes much longer.

Your property purchase could be jeopardised by failing to confirm your conveyancing solicitor's lender panel status.

Our conveyancing solicitors can act on behalf of all mortgage lenders.

Herefordshire Council searches

Property searches (sometimes referred to as 'conveyancing searches') are carried out by Hereford conveyancing solicitors to identify any wider issues that could impact how much the property you are buying will be worth.

Mortgage lenders also usually require property searches (sometimes referred to as 'conveyancing searches') to be applied for. Required searches will include:

  • Local Authority search - exposes issues like road schemes that could affect the property
  • Drainage & Water search - identifies whether the owner or local authority must pay for the maintenance of water mains and sewers
  • Environmental search - shows risks within 500 metres of the property, such as toxic chemicals in the land
  • Chancel repair liability - there is a risk that some Hereford properties owe a liability to the local parish to pay for church repairs. Insurance can be taken out to protect against this liability.

More specialised searches, such as a radon gas search or a Forestry Commission search, may also be recommended following the initial searches.

Homebuyers should expect to wait roughly 6 weeks for LA searches provided by Herefordshire Council. As a result, quicker regulated searches will be recommended.

Planning searches

Office copies will also be obtained from HM Land Registry by the conveyancing solicitor acting for the homebuyer. This will help to reveal any issues. These issues could include limits on the development of the property or a difference between the agent's floorplan and the title plan.

Herefordshire Council Council Tax

The amount of council tax a homeowner in Hereford will pay to Herefordshire Council will depend on the property's value and the number of residents. For instance a home in the Herefordshire Council area in Band B would pay £1,340 per annum.

Conveyancing solicitors in Hereford will inform the buyer of the home's 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 £1,005.

Other discounts and exemptions could also apply, e.g. if the property is uninhabited (for the first 60 days) or if the property is a 'granny annexe'. Property constructed after 1991 is assessed and allocated a council tax banding by the Valuation Office Agency (VOA).

Band Herefordshire Council Tax (2018)
A £1,149
B £1,340
C £1,531
D £1,723
E £2,106
F £2,489
G £2,872
H £3,446

Can I challenge my valuation?

From April 2016 to March 2017, 30 council tax challenges were made, of which 20 resulted in a reduction. Contact the VOA for more information on how to challenge your tax band:

Valuation Office Agency
Block A Government Buildings
Whittington Rd
Worcester
WR5 2LB
Worcestershire

Stamp Duty on Hereford properties

With some exceptions, if you purchase a property over the £125,000 threshold you will have to pay SDLT. Obtaining and completing the SDLT1 return from HMRC is difficult but not impossible for a typical property buyer. Usually, however, the form is completed by the conveyancing solicitor to avoid penalties or delays.

Quittance Conveyancing's investment in the latest case management system means that HMRC filing late filing penalties are a thing of the past.

The following table illustrates SDLT examples for properties in Hereford:

  Average sale price (2018 to date) SDLT
Average price £255,530 £2,776.50
Average price (detached) £341,797 £7,089.85
Average new build £133,749 £174.98
Following a change in April 2016, a stamp duty surcharge of 3% is applied for purchases of additional property. Therefore, if a homeowner in Hereford bought a second property for the average price of £255,530 the SDLT would be £20,442.40.

Stamp duty relief for first-time buyers in Hereford

Since November 2017, first-time buyers only need to pay stamp duty on properties valued over £300,000.

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

Buying a flat? Leasehold conveyancing in Hereford

New build site

Purchasing a leasehold home without knowing what you are getting into can be risky. There is a wide range of sometimes obscure legal issues that may be awaiting the unsuspecting purchaser, including spiralling ground rents and unpaid service charges by the existing leaseholder.

Serious financial ramifications can result from an inexperienced property lawyer's bad leasehold advice.

A good conveyancing solicitor in Hereford will consider potential leasehold issues, e.g. :

  • reviewing the lease itself (leases can be 10's or even 100's of years old)
  • dealing with freeholders
  • service charges and whether they have been collected
  • short leases

Make sure that you are fully-informed regarding your planned purchase - Speak to Quittance Conveyancing's leasehold conveyancing solicitors today on 0800 612 0377.

Buying a 'New Build' property in Hereford?

New build building site

The average price for new build property in Hereford is £133,749. 3 newly-constructed homes have been bought in Hereford in 2018 so far.

A new-build conveyancing solicitor in Hereford must be familiar with regional considerations and the added complexities of new build, including checking new build mortgage procedures are followed and dealing with incomplete service connection agreements.

Our team of new build conveyancers deliver an expert appraisal of the legal title of the property, with a close eye on considerations ranging from the home's subsequent marketability to 'doubling' ground rent and service charges (where applicable).

Conservation areas in Herefordshire

If you are purchasing a house in one of Hereford's conservation areas, the property must not breach any conservation area conditions. These building controls can include anything from restrictions preventing the addition of new access, to restrictions on the removal or addition of front boundary walls.

If a property is in breach, you could be required by law (as the new owner) to pay for returning the property to a compliant state, even where the alterations were made by the previous owner.

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

Conveyancing - Selling a property in Hereford

The legal side of a property sale is less complicated than when buying. For a house purchase, caveat-emptor' means that the onus lies with the purchaser to make sure that the property they are buying is legally sound.

On the other side of the transaction, conveyancing solicitors in Hereford acting for the existing owner need only respond to the buyer's questions.

What could go wrong?

A property will often come with any number of possible complications (for example having a defective lease) which may prolong a sale.

Property experts almost always advise that sellers tackle these issues head on.

Further reading:

Read more sale conveyancing articles here.

Leasehold conveyancing for a sale

The conveyancing process for a leasehold flat or house is significantly more technical than for a freehold property.

Conveyancing solicitors in Hereford will also carry out additional work, for example obtaining the latest service charge and ground rent statement, through to details of any consents for alterations.

To speed up the leasehold conveyancing process, it is highly recommended that the seller instructs a conveyancer with leasehold experience as soon as possible, preferably before putting the property on the market,.

Can your conveyancing solicitors act for both sides?

A conveyancer regulated by the CLC can act for both the buyer and the seller. However, Solicitors Regulation Authority rules restrict a single conveyancing solicitor from acting on both sides in a house sale.

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

Local Hereford conveyancing solicitor directory

  • Gabbs Solicitors Limited, 14 Broad Street, Hereford, Herefordshire, HR4 9AP
  • Harrison Clark Rickerbys Limited, Thorpe House, 29 Broad Street, Hereford, Herefordshire, HR4 9AR
  • T.A. Matthews Solicitors Limited, Broadway House, 32-35 Broad Street, Hereford, Herefordshire, HR4 9AR
  • Coulson Read Lewis Solicitors, St. Peters Chambers, 14a St. Peters Street, Hereford, Herefordshire, HR1 2LE
  • Humfrys & Symonds Ltd, 1 St. John Street, Hereford, Herefordshire, HR1 2ND

Conveyancing - Remortgaging a property in Hereford

Reducing monthly repayments by finding a better rate is generally why homeowners remortgage. There are other reasons, including the existing lender having refused a payment holiday, or releasing funds to help kids get on the property ladder.

An efficient conveyancing solicitor in Hereford can reduce the remortgage processing time, perhaps saving you from a payment or two at your old rate. With the base rate set at 0.5% (May 2018) and possible rate rises on the horizon, fast conveyancing can be a contributing factor to securing the rate you want.

The property lawyer will act for both you and the bank or building society, in order to ensure the interests of the lender are protected.

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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