Updated: October 12, 2018

Launceston conveyancing solicitor fees and costs

No Move, No Fee conveyancing in Launceston

Conveyancing solicitor fees will be paid to your Launceston conveyancing solicitor for the legal work involved in moving home.

Are Launceston conveyancing fees and costs fixed?

Our conveyancers work on a guaranteed fixed conveyancing fee basis with no unexpected, additional costs, unlike some other conveyancing solicitors in Launceston who will work on a price per hour basis. Your quote will explain what you will pay when your sale or purchase goes through.

What are disbursements?

You will have to pay any 'disbursements', in addition to the legal fees.

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

See: A guide to conveyancing fees, costs and disbursements

How much will conveyancing in Launceston cost in total?

Whilst conveyancing fees in Launceston will be the same as anywhere else in the UK, there can be variation in the disbursements required. As examples, additional region-specific searches, e.g. utilities searches, may be needed and Local Authority (LA) Search fees will vary.

There are no hidden fees or nasty surprises with Quittance. For a standard sale or purchase, the fees we quote are the fees 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 Launceston

The conveyancing for a homebuyer will need the Launceston conveyancing solicitor to consider a wide range of issues. Examples of such issues can range from problems with the property's title to factors affecting the mortgageability (e.g. historic flooding).

The buyer's property lawyer will report their findings back to the purchaser and their mortgage lender, offer practical solutions and confirm that the legal title passes to the new owner.

This section of the article considers those parts of the legal process for conveyancing solicitors in Launceston that warrant specialist knowledge.

Your Launceston conveyancing solicitor must be lender-approved

Irrespective of whether you are obtaining a mortgage from the Co-operative Bank, Fleet Mortgages or any other lender, before instructing a conveyancing solicitor in Launceston you need to check that they are on the approved panel of your mortgage lender.

Some lenders are only prepared to work with a selected list (known as a 'panel') of firms. If a solicitor is unable to act for your mortgage lender, the lender will likely require a second firm to complete the legal work.

You will be expected to pay this alternative lawyer's costs and significant delays to your move could occur.

Failing to confirm the lender panel membership of your property lawyer could mean significant delays.

Our solicitors can act for all mortgage lenders.

Property Searches (Cornwall Council)

Property searches are enquiries made of government bodies by Launceston conveyancing solicitors to identify information and potential issues affecting your planned purchase.

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

Purchasers will be told if your mortgage lender wants any further searches, for example an HS2 search or a commons registration search.

The average processing time for Residential property searches from Cornwall Council is 8 weeks. As a result, quicker regulated searches will be recommended.

Checking planning permission status

The buyer's conveyancing solicitor also retrieves an Official Copy of the Title Register from HMLR, helping to identify potential planning issues, such as outbuildings lying outside the boundary or the breach of a restrictive covenant.

Cornwall Council Council Tax

Cornwall Council calculate your council tax based on a variety of factors that include the square footage of the property and the property's value as at 1 April 1991 (England) or 1 April 2003 (Wales). The occupier of a property in Tax Band E, for example, would owe annual council tax of £2,166.

A conveyancing solicitor in Launceston will inform a buyer of the home's tax 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 £1,625.

Other discounts and exemptions may also apply, for example unoccupied properties undergoing major repairs or structural changes or where the property is a hall of residence.

Band Cornwall Council Tax (2018)
A £1,182
B £1,378
C £1,575
D £1,772
E £2,166
F £2,560
G £2,954
H £3,545

Can I challenge my valuation?

To appeal contact:

Valuation Office Agency
190 Armada Way
Plymouth
PL1 1EG
Devon

The Valuation Office Agency (VOA) should reassess a property's band on request. Councils prefer that this be done within six months of buying a property.

Stamp Duty on Launceston properties

After a property sale has exchanged and completed, the purchaser's conveyancing solicitor will ensure that the stamp duty is paid to HMRC.

If your home costs more than £125k then you will have to pay Stamp Duty Land Tax.

Penalties for errors or late filing of the SDLT1 form can be as high as 30%. Quittance use case management system to ensure that SDLT is paid immediately after completion.

This table sets out stamp duty for average property in Launceston:

  Average sale price (2017) SDLT
Average price £218,300 £1,866.00
Average price (detached) £291,415 £4,570.75
Average new build £208,033 £1,660.66
Following a change in April 2016, a higher SDLT rate of 3% is applied for purchases of additional property. For example, if a property owner bought a second property in Launceston for the average price of £218,300 the stamp duty would be £10,915.00.

Stamp duty relief for first-time buyers in Launceston

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 with reduced rates up to £500,000.

Launceston conveyancing solicitors should ensure the right amount is calculated.

Buying a flat? Leasehold conveyancing in Launceston

New build site

It is rarely a good idea to buy a leasehold home if you are unaware of the facts. Numerous technical issues may be lying in wait for the unsuspecting buyer, including:

  • unfair developer practices
  • freeholds sold without first refusal to leaseholders
  • increasing ground rents
Erroneous leasehold advice, from an inexperienced lawyer, can have costly, long-term consequences.

If you are planning to buy a house or flat with a lease, a expert conveyancing solicitor in Launceston will investigate aspects of the leasehold purchase, such as :

  • reviewing the lease
  • annual statements of account and budgets for service charges
  • reviewing correspondence between the freeholder and leaseholder
  • sinking funds
  • planned external works requiring scaffolding

Make sure that you are aware of all the potential issues and costs associated with the lease thanks to our leasehold conveyancing solicitors.

Buying a 'New Build' property in Launceston?

House under construction

7 new build properties have been bought in Launceston in 2018 so far, according to local information gathered by the HM Land Registry. The average cost of Launceston new build homes is £211,986.

Buying a new build is more complex than any other type of conveyancing. To prevent difficulties arising a conveyancing solicitor in Launceston must be conscious of Launceston-specific considerations and must consider a range of factors, e.g. handling structural guarantees and handling withdrawal under the Consumer Code for Housebuilders.

Our highly qualified conveyancing team specialise in working to developer exchange timeframes and new build purchases.

Cornwall Conservation areas

If you are planning to buy a property in a conservation area in Launceston, the property must be compliant with any local conservation area building controls. Referred to as Article 4 directions, these conditions may include anything from restrictions affecting frontal additions to the property such as a porch, to general restrictions governing the use of non-traditional materials.

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

Your conveyancing solicitor will address whether your planned purchase is located one of Launceston's conservation areas.

Conveyancing - Selling a property in Launceston

The legal work involved in a sale of a house or flat is simpler than for a purchase. The buyer's conveyancing solicitor carries out a full legal review on the home, whereas conveyancing solicitors in Launceston acting for the seller simply replies to the solicitor's standard and additional enquiries.

Why do sales fall through?

Issues, like excessive ground rent or not having appropriate warranties, can seriously hinder a sale if not dealt with promptly.

Don't ignore the issue, trusting that the issue won't be discovered. Instead, you should get advice, square up to the issue(s), and find a solution as early as possible.

Further reading:

For more conveyancing advice for sellers click here.

Sale conveyancing for a leasehold property

The legal work for a leasehold property is much more complex than for a freehold house.

Leasehold complexity involves additional work on the part of conveyancing solicitors in Launceston, such as collating an up-to-date service charge statement, through to a common parts fire risk assessment.

To speed up the leasehold conveyancing process, it is highly recommended that you instruct a lawyer with leasehold experience as soon as the property is marketed, if not before,.

Can Quittance conveyancers act for both parties?

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

If you are buying or selling a home in Launceston, and we are acting for the other side, you could contact a local Launceston conveyancing solicitor firm to handle your legal work.

Local Launceston conveyancing solicitor directory

  • John Whiting & Co, 27 Westgate Street, Launceston, Cornwall, PL15 7AD
  • Parnalls Solicitors Limited, 15-19 Westgate Street, Launceston, Cornwall, PL15 7AB
  • Coodes LLP, 8 Race Hill, Launceston, Cornwall, PL15 9BA
  • Wbw Solicitors LLP, Westgate, Launceston, Cornwall, PL15 9AD

Conveyancing - Remortgaging a property in Launceston

People remortgage their home for a number of reasons, such as releasing funds to help kids get on the property ladder, or moving from a tracker to a fixed-rate. By far the most common reason, however, is to get a better interest rate.

Homeowners can benefit from a better rate sooner with a more efficient conveyancing solicitor in Launceston. They will work to reduce the processing time of the conveyancing. With the base rate now at 0.5% (May 2018) and future interest rate changes hard to predict, fast conveyancing can be a crucial factor in getting onto your new rate as quickly as possible.

A property lawyer will act for both you and the bank or building society to ensure that the new interest in the property is registered correctly and the lender's investment is secured.

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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