Updated: October 12, 2018

Leigh On Sea conveyancing solicitor fees

No Move, No Fee conveyancing in Leigh On Sea

Conveyancing solicitor fees are the charges you pay to your Leigh On Sea conveyancing solicitor for the legal work associated with moving home.

Are Leigh On Sea conveyancing fees and costs fixed?

Quittance's conveyancing solicitors work on a fixed No Move, No Fee basis with no hidden costs, unlike some other conveyancing solicitors in Leigh On Sea who work on an hourly rate. Your quote will explain exactly what you will be charged when your sale or purchase goes through.

Besides conveyancing fees, what other costs are there?

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

See: Complete list of conveyancing fees and disbursements

How much will the total conveyancing fees in Leigh On Sea cost?

Conveyancing fees in Leigh On Sea will be the same as anywhere else in the country. However, the costs of certain disbursements can vary. As examples, Local Authority (LA) Search fees will vary and specific extra searches, e.g. a mining search, may be necessary.

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

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

Conveyancing - Buying a property in Leigh On Sea

As a key part of the legal work for a property purchase, a Leigh On Sea conveyancing solicitor will look into the title of the property and report back in detail to the buyer and the lender.

The conveyancer will offer professional advice following their enquiries, find solutions to outstanding defects and other issues and make sure that the title is registered in the name of the new buyer.

The following considers elements of the legal process for conveyancing solicitors in Leigh On Sea where a deeper understanding of the legal technicalities is important.

Your Leigh On Sea conveyancing solicitor must be lender-approved

Regardless of whether your mortgage is with a financial institution like Paragon or a large lender such as the Yorkshire Building Society, before appointing a Leigh On Sea conveyancing solicitor you must confirm that they are on the approved solicitor panel of your mortgage lender.

Your lawyer may not be able to carry out the legal work for your mortgage lender, because some banks and building societies will only work with a restricted group of firms that have achieved certain benchmarks.

If that is the case, the lender will need a second firm to complete the legal work, and you will be expected to pay this alternate solicitor's costs. This can frustrate or delay the process.

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

Quittance Conveyancing can act on behalf of all mortgage providers.

Southend-on-Sea Council searches and other searches

Property searches (sometimes referred to as 'conveyancing searches') are carried out by Leigh On Sea conveyancing solicitors to help to identify issues that might possibly compromise how much your house or flat is worth.

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

You will be told if your chosen lender requires any further searches, for example a Crossrail search or an energy search.

The typical processing time for Local Authority searches ordered from Southend-on-Sea Council is 9 weeks. Faster personal searches (as opposed to official LA searches) will therefore be recommended.

Planning searches

The buyer's conveyancing solicitor will request an 'Official Copy of the Title Register' from HMLR, helping to evidence any planning issues, such as the title plan showing only very general boundaries or restrictions that limit alterations.

Southend-on-Sea Council Council Tax

Southend-on-Sea Council calculate your council tax based on various criteria which include the location of the property and the property's value as at 1 April 1991 (England) or 1 April 2003 (Wales). For example, the occupier of a Tax Band C property in the Southend-on-Sea Council area would pay annual council tax of £1,395.

Leigh On Sea conveyancing solicitors will inform the purchaser of the property's tax band once this is confirmed by the searches.

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 £1,046.

Other discounts and exemptions may also apply, e.g. unoccupied properties undergoing major repairs or structural changes or if the property is owned by a charity and is unoccupied.

Band Southend-on-Sea Council Tax (2018)
A £1,046
B £1,221
C £1,395
D £1,569
E £1,918
F £2,267
G £2,616
H £3,139

Could I be overpaying council tax?

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. To appeal contact:

Valuation Office Agency
Anchorage House
High St
Chatham
ME4 4WD
Kent

Stamp Duty on Leigh On Sea properties

The buyer (rather than the seller) will have to pay stamp duty on the purchase price of the property if it exceeds £125,000. Obtaining and completing the SDLT1 return from HMRC is difficult but not impossible for a typical purchaser. Usually, however, the form is completed by the property lawyer to avoid penalties or delays.

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

See examples for local properties:

  Average selling price (2017) SDLT
Average price £373,745 £8,687.25
Average price (detached) £520,125 £16,006.25
Average new build £307,909 £5,395.45
Following a change in April 2016, an SDLT surcharge of 3% is applied for purchases of additional property. So if a second property was bought for £373,745 then the stamp duty total will be £29,899.60.

Stamp duty relief for first-time buyers in Leigh On Sea

Since Nov 2017, if you are a first-time buyer, you only pay stamp duty on property valued at over £300k.

Leigh On Sea conveyancing solicitors will ensure an accurate calculation is made.

Buying a flat? Leasehold conveyancing in Leigh On Sea

New build site

The potential risks of purchasing a leasehold flat in the UK have been well chronicled by the media. The many potential traps lying in wait for the unsuspecting purchaser could include increasing ground rents, marriage value issues and costly and undisclosed major works.

Poor leasehold guidance, from an inexperienced conveyancing solicitor, could have serious financial implications.

If you intend to buy a property with a lease, a good conveyancing solicitor in Leigh On Sea will consider potential leasehold issues, e.g. :

  • reviewing the lease itself
  • possible service charge shortfalls
  • managing agent or landlord enquiries
  • leases approaching 80 years remaining

Quittance Conveyancing's leasehold conveyancing solicitors will ensure that you are aware of all the potential issues and costs associated with the lease.

Buying a 'New Build' property in Leigh On Sea?

House being built

According to data gathered by the Land Registry, 17 brand new properties were purchased in Leigh On Sea last year. The average cost of Leigh On Sea new build homes is £307,909.

A new-build conveyancing solicitor in Leigh On Sea must be aware of regional considerations and the extra complexities associated with new build, such as ensuring new estate roads are adopted, dealing with lender conditions and checking new build warranties with warranty providers such as NHBC Buildmark, LABC and BLP.

Our new build conveyancing department will provide an expert appraisal of the property's legal status, scrutinising contract considerations ranging from unreasonable leasehold terms to likely freehold acquisition traps.

Conservation areas in Essex

If you are planning to buy a residential property in a conservation area in Leigh On Sea, the property will need to meet any conservation area restrictions. These restrictions can include restrictions on the addition of boundary walls, restrictions on the use of cladding or restrictions on the erection of outbuildings.

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

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

Conveyancing - Selling a property in Leigh On Sea

The legal side of a sale of a home is less demanding than when buying. For a house purchase, the burden is on the buyer to determine whether the property is not legally defective.

When selling, conveyancing solicitors in Leigh On Sea acting for the current owner need only respond to the buyer's solicitor's questions.

How to reduce the risk of an abortive sale

Hurdles, like being in an area threatened by local development or missing planning regulations, can prolong a transaction if not dealt with promptly.

You shouldn't ignore this as solicitors are trained to unearth any such issues - get advice, square up to the issue(s), and find a solution proactively.

Recommended reading:

Read more sale conveyancing articles here.

Leasehold

Conveyancing for a leasehold flat is significantly more involved than it is for a freehold home.

The complex nature of leasehold property means that conveyancing solicitors in Leigh On Sea must carry out extra work, which could include obtaining the latest service charge and ground rent statement or a copy of any health and safety assessment for the common parts.

In order to resolve any leasehold issues faster, it is highly recommended that you instruct a solicitor as soon as an estate agent is chosen.

What if you are acting for the other side?

SRA rules ban a single conveyancing solicitor from acting on both sides in a property sale and purchase. However, CLC-regulated conveyancers, can act for both parties.

You could contact a local Leigh On Sea conveyancing solicitor firm to handle your legal work, if we are carrying out the legal work for the other side.

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Conveyancing - Remortgaging a property in Leigh On Sea

By far the most common reason homeowners remortgage a home is to get a more affordable interest rate. There are other reasons to remortgage, such as switching from interest-only to repayment, or releasing capital.

An efficient conveyancing solicitor in Leigh On Sea will complete the conveyancing quickly, meaning you move to your lower rate sooner. With the base rate set at 0.5% (May 2018) and the future of interest rates unclear, fast conveyancing can play a key role in securing the rate you want.

To confirm that the lender's capital is protected, the property lawyer handling your remortgage will need to act for both you and the mortgage lender.

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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