Updated: October 12, 2018

Newham conveyancing solicitor fees

No Move, No Fee conveyancing in Newham

Conveyancing solicitor fees are what you pay conveyancing solicitors in Newham for the legal work for a home sale or purchase.

Do Newham conveyancing solicitors work on a fixed fee basis?

Our conveyancers work on a guaranteed fixed conveyancing fee basis with no nasty surprises in the small print, unlike some other conveyancing solicitors in Newham who will work on an hourly-rate basis. Your conveyancing quote will explain what you will be charged when your sale or purchase goes through.

What are disbursements?

On top of the conveyancing fees you will also need to budget for '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 managing agent information or HMLR fees.

See: Complete list of conveyancing fees and disbursements

How much will the total conveyancing fees in Newham cost?

Conveyancing solicitor fees in Newham will be the same as anywhere else in the country. However, the costs of certain disbursements can vary. For example, Local Authority (LA) Search fees will vary and additional region-specific searches, e.g. a commons registration search, may be needed.

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 surprises in the small print. 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 Newham

Created by merging the former Essex county boroughs of East and West Ham, the London Borough of Newham lies 8 km east of the City of London. The major centre within the borough is Stratford, which received major investment prior to the London Olympics in 2012.

Stratford is now East London's primary retail, cultural and leisure centre, with the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park including the London stadium and London Aquatic Centre as well as parklands, waterways, playgrounds and cafes.

Newham has also become the second most significant business location (after Canary Wharf) in the east of the capital. Ongoing regeneration will ensure the area continues to thrive.

Conveyancing for purchasers

Caveat emptor, meaning 'let the buyer beware', was a key part of property law in England and Wales. Following recent changes in the law, this maxim no longer applies. However, it is still the duty of a buyer's solicitor to investigate their intended purchase.

The Newham conveyancing solicitor will make recommendations following their enquiries, deal with any legal problems and ensure that the full legal ownership is transferred.

This section of the article discusses those areas of the legal process for conveyancing solicitors in Newham where additional expertise is essential.

Your Newham conveyancing solicitor must be lender-approved

Whether you are taking out a mortgage from Santander, the Ecology Building Society or any other lender, before you select a Newham conveyancing solicitor it is very important that you make sure that they can act for your chosen lender.

Many lenders are only prepared to work with a select panel of firms that match certain criteria. If your solicitor is not on the panel of your chosen lender, the lender will likely require an alternative firm to complete the legal work.

The borrower will usually need to pay this substitute lawyer's fees and the conveyancing process could take much longer.

Failing to check your property lawyer's lender panel status could result in significant delays.

Quittance Conveyancing can act on behalf of all banks and other lenders.

Conveyancing Searches (Newham Borough Council)

Property searches are enquiries made by Newham conveyancing solicitors to help uncover relevant information about your new home.

Banks and building societies also need certain searches to be purchased. These include:

Local Authority (LA) searchplanning and development details from Newham Borough Council records
Drainage & Water searchidentifies water mains and sewers. This search also addresses whether the maintenance for these is the owner's responsibility.
Environmental searchshows whether the surrounding environment is suitable for the purchaser
Chancel repair liabilitythere is a risk that some Newham properties owe a liability to the local parish to pay for church repairs. Insurance can be taken out to protect against this liability.

Your conveyancer will make you aware if your chosen lender insists on any more searches, for example an HS2 search or a commons registration search.

The typical processing time for searches ordered from the London Borough of Newham is 4 weeks, so quicker regulated searches will be recommended.

Planning searches

The buyer's conveyancing solicitor will obtain an 'Official Copy of the Title Register' from HM Land Registry. This will help to expose any issues. Examples of these include restrictions that limit alterations or errors on the title plan.

London Borough of Newham Council Tax

The amount of council tax a homeowner in Newham will pay to London Borough of Newham will depend on the property's value and the number of residents. For example, for an average Band B residential property in Newham, the council tax amount would be £979.

Conveyancing solicitors in Newham will inform the buyer of the home's tax band once they have the Local Authority search results.

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 £734.

Other discounts and exemptions could also apply, for example unoccupied properties undergoing major repairs or if an occupier is a student nurse.

Band London Borough of Newham Tax (2018)
A £839
B £979
C £1,119
D £1,259
E £1,539
F £1,818
G £2,098
H £2,518

What to do if you suspect your new home is incorrectly valued

Contact the VOA for more information on how to challenge your tax band:

Valuation Office Agency
10th Floor
Crown House
Linton Rd
IG11 8HJ

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 Newham properties

If the purchase price of the residential property you intend to buy is over the £125,000 threshold, you must pay SDLT. Stamp duty is paid after an SDLT1 form is completed. The form is hard to understand in places - even some non-conveyancing solicitors struggle with it.

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.

The following table illustrates stamp duty examples for typical properties in Newham:

  Average sale price (2017) SDLT
Average price £409,804 £10,490.20
Average price (detached) £525,562 £16,278.10
Average new build £450,462 £12,523.10
Homeowners must pay a higher rate of SDLT when buying a second property. Following the example above, if a homeowner bought a second property in Newham for the average price of £409,804 the SDLT would be £32,784.32.

Stamp duty relief for first-time buyers in Newham

For first-time buyers, stamp duty is only payable on purchases over £300k.

Conveyancing solicitors in Newham should confirm the right amount is calculated.

Buying a flat? Leasehold conveyancing in Newham

New build site

Buying a leasehold property is not as simple as purchasing a freehold property. The many potential complications awaiting the unsuspecting buyer include costly and undisclosed major works, increasing ground rents and leases with fewer than 80 years to run.

Erroneous leasehold advice, from an inexperienced lawyer, could have costly, long-term consequences.

If you intend to buy a property with a lease, a good conveyancing solicitor in Newham will consider potential leasehold issues, including dealing with landlords, reviewing the lease and leases approaching 80 years remaining.

Quittance Conveyancing's specialist leasehold conveyancing solicitors will ensure that you are fully-informed regarding your decision to buy a leasehold property.

Buying a 'New Build' property in Newham?

Building site

According to data compiled by Her Majesty's Land Registry, 118 new build houses and flats have been bought in Newham in 2018 so far. The average purchase price of new build property in Newham is £459,606.

A new-build conveyancing solicitor in Newham must be familiar with regional factors and the specific issues associated with new build, e.g. working to builders' exchange timelines and handling unreasonable delays.

Our team of new build conveyancers deliver an impartial appraisal of the legal status of the property, with close attention paid to factors ranging from the home's future resaleability to an assessment of other risks, such as regional infrastructure development.

Conservation areas

Your conveyancing solicitor will confirm whether the property you are going to buy is in one of Newham's conservation areas. If it is, the house will be affected by certain restrictions. Called Article 4 directions, these conditions could include:

  • Restrictions on painting external walls
  • Restrictions on the display of advertisements
  • Restrictions on the erection of outbuildings

The local planning authority can order any non-compliant alterations to a property to be changed or removed, such as removing a new garden wall.

Newham conservation areas include Woodgrange Estate, Durham Road and Three Mills. Your Quittance conveyancing solicitor will confirm if the property you are purchasing is located in a conservation area in Newham.

Conveyancing - Selling a property in Newham

The conveyancing process on a sale of a house or flat usually requires less work than for a property purchase. With a property purchase, the responsibility lies with the purchaser to verify that the home they are buying is mortgageable and free from legal issues.

Conversely, with a sale, conveyancing solicitors in Newham acting for the seller need only answer questions set by the buyer's conveyancing solicitor.

Factors that could delay or endanger the sale of your home

A house or flat can be burdened by a series of legal problems (e.g. having previously suffered from a flood event) which may derail a transaction.

You shouldn't ignore this as it is highly unlikely that the problems won't be picked up - get professional advice, face the issues head on, and find a solution ASAP.

Further reading:

Read more conveyancing advice for sellers.

Leasehold flats

The conveyancing process for a leasehold flat (leasehold houses are uncommon) is quite a lot more technical than it is for a freehold home.

Newham conveyancing solicitors must usually carry out further legal work, for example requesting the latest service charge accounts, through to details of planned major works.

It is recommended that you instruct a property lawyer with leasehold experience as soon as is practicable to ensure any legal complexity is correctly handled.

What if you are acting for the other side?

Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) rules restrict the same conveyancing solicitor from working on behalf of both sides in a property sale. CLC-regulated conveyancers, however, can act for both parties.

You could contact a property solicitor firm in Newham to undertake your conveyancing, if a Quittance conveyancing solicitor is doing the legal work for the other side.


Conveyancing - Remortgaging a property in Newham

By far the most common reason people remortgage their home is to reduce the monthly repayments. There are also other reasons to switch lenders or mortgage deals, such as moving to an offset mortgage, or consolidating loan repayments.

A good conveyancing solicitor in Newham will complete the conveyancing quickly, and move you to the better rate sooner. With the base rate set at 0.5% (May 2018), fast conveyancing can be a crucial factor in getting on to the rate you want.

The property lawyer carrying out your remortgage needs to be able to act for your new mortgage lender. Our conveyancers are on all major UK lenders' panels, so whether you are moving to a 100% mortgage with Lloyds Bank or to a long-term fixed mortgage with the Market Harborough Building Society, we 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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