Updated: October 12, 2018

Newbury conveyancing solicitor fees

No Move, No Fee conveyancing in Newbury

Conveyancing solicitor fees will be paid your Newbury conveyancing solicitor for the legal work for a home sale or purchase.

Do Newbury conveyancing solicitors work on a fixed fee basis?

Quittance's conveyancing solicitors work on a fixed No Sale, No Fee basis with no hidden costs, unlike some other conveyancing solicitors in Newbury who carry out the legal work on a price per hour basis. Your conveyancing quote sets out all fees and other costs you will be charged when your property transaction has completed.

Are there any other costs in addition to conveyancing fees?

On top of the conveyancing fees you will also have to cover any 'disbursements'.

Disbursements are fees, costs or taxes that your property solicitor will have to pay to third parties on behalf of their client. These include costs like office copies or Land Registry fees.

See: A guide to all conveyancing fees

How much will the total conveyancing fees in Newbury cost?

Though conveyancing fees in Newbury will usually match prices elsewhere in the UK, the disbursements required can vary. For example, specific extra searches, e.g. a flooding search, may be necessary and council search fees will vary.

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

Quittance's fees were cheaper - less than half the Estate Agent's recommended solicitor's fees

Conveyancing - Buying a property in Newbury

Recent changes to the law mean that a seller should disclose defects or disputes to the buyer.

It remains, however, the duty of the conveyancing solicitor in Newbury to carry out due diligence on the property, report back to the buyer and the lender, iron out any legal issues and ensure that the change of ownership is registered at the Land Registry.

This article offers advice to assist buyers looking for conveyancing solicitors in Newbury.

Your Newbury conveyancing solicitor must be lender-approved

Irrespective of whether your mortgage is with a major lender like the HSBC or a niche lender such as Pepper Money, before you instruct a conveyancing solicitor in Newbury it is paramount that you confirm that they can act for your lender.

Your conveyancer may be unable to act for your lender, because some banks and building societies only accept a restricted group of law firms that meet stringent criteria.

If this is the case, the lender will require a second firm to carry out the legal work, and you will usually need to pay this alternative lawyer's costs. This can mean the process takes much longer.

Serious delays can occur if you fail to check your property lawyer's lender panel status.

Our conveyancing solicitors can perform the conveyancing for all mortgage lenders.

Property Searches (West Berkshire Council)

Property searches are carried out by Newbury conveyancing solicitors to expose any broader issues that might possibly impact how much your house or flat will be worth. They include:

  • Local Authority search - includes the LLC1 Local Land Charge Register and CON29 Enquiry Form
  • Drainage & Water search - identifies water mains and sewers. This search also addresses whether the maintenance for these is the owner's responsibility.
  • 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 - describes the insurance to protect against any liability owed by Newbury properties for local parish repairs.

Buyers will be informed if your mortgage lender insists on any further searches, e.g. a tin mining search or a Forestry Commission search.

The estimated lead time for conveyancing searches obtained from West Berkshire Council is 7 weeks. In these circumstances, faster personal searches will be recommended.

Planning documents

Your conveyancing solicitor will request official entries from the Land Registry, helping to evidence any issues. These issues could include a difference between the agent's floorplan and the title plan or restrictive covenants governing the use of the property.

West Berkshire Council Council Tax

The council tax paid by a homeowner is based on various criteria such as the size and character of the property and the value of the home as determined by the VOA in 1991. For example, for an average Valuation Band E home in Newbury, the council tax would be £2,167.

Conveyancing solicitors in Newbury will inform a purchaser of the home'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 £1,625.

Other discounts and exemptions may also apply, e.g. if the property is a second home then a 10% discount will be applied or where the property is uninhabitable.

Band West Berkshire Council Tax (2018)
A £1,182
B £1,379
C £1,576
D £1,773
E £2,167
F £2,561
G £2,954
H £3,545

Could I be overpaying council tax?

To appeal contact:

Valuation Office Agency
Kings Wharf
20-30 Kings Rd
Reading
RG1 3ER
Berkshire

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

Stamp Duty on Newbury properties

Stamp duty must be paid by the property buyer on properties sold for more than £125,000. Given the complexity of the SDLT1 tax return form, only the daring would attempt to complete and file this with HMRC without a conveyancing solicitor's help.

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

The following table illustrates SDLT examples for average properties in Newbury:

  Average sale price (2017) SDLT
Average price £442,517 £12,125.85
Average price (detached) £592,562 £19,628.10
Average new build £505,652 £15,282.60
If you are buying a second home for over £40,000 then you will have to pay a 3% stamp duty surcharge. So if a second home was bought for £442,517 then the SDLT total will be £35,401.36.

Stamp duty relief for first-time buyers in Newbury

First-time buyer stamp duty relief is available on property purchases below £300,000.

Conveyancing solicitors in Newbury should ensure the right amount is calculated.

Buying a flat? Leasehold conveyancing in Newbury

New build site

Over 100,000 UK property owners are trapped in leases with unreasonable terms. Unreasonable ground rents, unreasonable lease extension premiums and reversionary interests are only some of the many traps lying in wait for an uninformed buyer.

Serious consequences can result from a less-experienced conveyancer's erroneous leasehold advice.

If you intend to purchase a leasehold property, a good conveyancing solicitor in Newbury will address aspects of leasehold, such as :

  • reviewing the lease itself (leases can be 10's or even 100's of years old)
  • any recent demands for service charges and ground rent
  • dealing with freeholders and managing agents
  • missing building regs and planning

Ensure that you are fully-informed regarding your decision to buy a leasehold property with our team of leasehold conveyancing solicitors.

Buying a 'New Build' property in Newbury?

New build site

The average sale price of new build homes in Newbury is £188,488. 2 brand new properties have been bought in Newbury in 2018 so far.

A new-build conveyancing solicitor in Newbury will need to be familiar with local Newbury issues and new build's added complexities, like checking planning conditions have been fulfilled, handling unreasonable delays and checking new build warranties with warranty providers such as NHBC Buildmark, Advantage HCI? and ACHI/Vantage.

Our team of new build conveyancers deliver an accurate and truly independent assessment of the legal title of the property, with close attention paid to factors ranging from the home's future marketability to excessive ground rent and service charges (where applicable).

Conservation areas in Berkshire

Your conveyancing solicitor will check if the property you are purchasing is in a conservation area in Newbury. If it is, the house is affected by building controls. These constraints may include a range of factors from restrictions on painting external walls, to restrictions on the addition of cladding.

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

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

Conveyancing - Selling a property in Newbury

The conveyancing process on a house sale is less difficult than when purchasing. For a house purchase, the principle of 'buyer beware' means that the onus is on the buyer to establish that the property they are purchasing is mortgageable and free from legal issues.

When selling, conveyancing solicitors in Newbury acting for the current owner only need to answer questions set by the buyer's conveyancing solicitor.

How to give yourself the best chances of success

A house or flat can be burdened by a series of issues (e.g. having a flying freehold or a problem with the roof) that can threaten your home move.

It is better not to hide from the issue and hope any such problems will go away. Get advice, square up to the issue(s), and find a solution as quickly as possible.

Recommended reading:

Read more helpful advice for sellers here.

Selling a leasehold property

The conveyancing process for a leasehold flat is a great deal more difficult in comparison with a freehold house.

Conveyancing solicitors in Newbury will also need to carry out additional work, which could include sourcing the last 3 years' service charge accounts, through to details of planned major works.

It is recommended that you contact a lawyer with leasehold experience as soon as an estate agent is chosen to help contain and resolve any delays.

What if you are acting for the other side?

A conveyancer who is regulated by the CLC can act for both parties. However, SRA regulations restrict the same conveyancing solicitor from working on behalf of both sides in a property sale.

You can contact a property solicitor firm in Newbury to handle your legal work, if one of our conveyancing solicitors is doing the legal work for the other side.

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Conveyancing - Remortgaging a property in Newbury

Homeowners remortgage a home for all sorts of reasons, such as funding a one-off purchase, or moving from a standard variable rate (SVR) to a fixed-rate. The most common reason, however, is to get a lower interest rate.

Homeowners can appreciate the benefits of a better rate sooner by using a more efficient conveyancing solicitor in Newbury. With the Bank of England base rate now at 0.5% (May 2018), fast conveyancing can be a critical factor in getting the mortgage rate you want.

The property lawyer conducting the legal work should also be able to act for your preferred mortgage lender. Quittance Conveyancing are on the panel for all major lenders. So whether you are moving to a 95% mortgage with the Bank of Scotland or to a joint mortgage with the Yorkshire Bank, Quittance can help.

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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