Updated: October 12, 2018

North Yorkshire conveyancing solicitor fees

No Move, No Fee conveyancing in North Yorkshire

Conveyancing solicitor fees are the costs you pay conveyancing solicitors in North Yorkshire for the legal work associated with buying or selling a property.

How are North Yorkshire conveyancing fees calculated?

Some conveyancing solicitors in North Yorkshire will work on a cost per hour basis. Some solicitors will complete the work on a fixed 'No Move, No Fee' basis. Quittance's conveyancing solicitors work on a No Sale, No Fee basis, with no hidden costs. Your conveyancing quote will set out exactly what you will need to pay when your sale or purchase completes.

Are there any other costs?

In addition to the legal fees you will also have to cover any 'disbursements'.

Disbursements are fees, costs or taxes the conveyancing solicitor will have to pay to other organisations as part of the house-buying and selling process. These include costs like indemnity insurance or Stamp Duty Land Tax.

See: A guide to conveyancing fees, costs and disbursements

How much will conveyancing in North Yorkshire cost in total?

While conveyancing fees in North Yorkshire will usually match prices elsewhere in the UK, there may be some variation in certain disbursements. For example, additional region-specific searches, such as a historic mining search, may be needed and Local Authority Search fees can vary.

With Quittance, there are no hidden fees or nasty surprises. For a standard home sale or purchase, the conveyancing fee we quote is the fee you pay. To calculate your conveyancing fees, try our conveyancing fees quote calculator: Click here

Quittance's conveyancing fees were considerably cheaper than the Estate Agent's recommended solicitor's fees

Conveyancing - Buying a property in North Yorkshire

Caveat emptor (buyer beware), was a fundamental principle of English property law. The 2008 Consumer Protection Against Unfair Trading Regulations (CPRs) have effectively abolished this rule, however, and it is still the duty of a buyer's solicitor to investigate their intended purchase.

The North Yorkshire conveyancing solicitor will offer professional advice once their enquiries are complete, offer pragmatic solutions and confirm that the legal title passes to the new owner.

This section of the article sets out useful guidance for people looking for conveyancing solicitors in North Yorkshire for a purchase.

Your North Yorkshire conveyancing solicitor must be lender-approved

Whether your mortgage is with a major lender like Yorkshire Bank or a less common lender such as the Tipton & Coseley Building Society, before choosing a conveyancing solicitor in North Yorkshire it is essential that you check that they are on the approved solicitor panel of your chosen lender.

Your conveyancer may not be able to carry out the legal work on behalf of your chosen lender, because some banks and building societies only accept a restricted group of firms.

Should this be the case, the lender will need an alternative solicitor firm to complete the legal work, and you will be expected to pay this second solicitor's fees. Adding another solicitor to the process can delay the whole purchase.

Failing to confirm your conveyancer's lender panel status could jeopardise the sale.

Our solicitors can carry out the legal work for all major and minor banks and building societies.

Searches (Harrogate Borough Council)

Searches are carried out by North Yorkshire conveyancing solicitors to identify any broader issues that might potentially reduce the value of the property you intend to buy.

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

Buyers will be informed if your chosen lender wants any further searches, such as an HS2 search or an energy search.

Harrogate Borough Council has an average processing time of 15 weeks for LA searches. In these circumstances, faster personal searches will be recommended.

Finding planning permissions

The conveyancing solicitor acting for the buyer will source an 'Official Copy of the Title Register' from the Land Registry, helping to identify any issues. These issues could include restrictive covenants governing the use of the property or discrepancies with the filed plan.

Harrogate Borough Council Council Tax

Council tax is calculated by Harrogate Borough Council on property value and the number of people living in the property. For example, for an average Tax Band C home in North Yorkshire, the tax would be £1,600 per year.

A conveyancing solicitor in North Yorkshire will inform a purchaser of the property'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 £1,200.

Other discounts and exemptions could also apply, for example unoccupied properties undergoing major repairs or structural changes or if an occupier is an apprentice school leaver or YTS trainee. New build property is assessed by the Valuation Office Agency (VOA) and allocated a band.

Band Harrogate Borough Council Tax (2018)
A £1,200
B £1,400
C £1,600
D £1,800
E £2,200
F £2,600
G £3,000
H £3,600

Can I dispute my council tax rate?

The Valuation Office Agency (VOA) should reassess a property's band on request. To challenge your banding contact:

Valuation Office Agency
Castle House
31 Lisbon St
Leeds
LS1 4DR
West Yorkshire

Stamp Duty on North Yorkshire properties

The normal process is for the conveyancing solicitor to complete the Stamp Duty Land Tax administration. Buyers can complete the SDLT1 themselves but it is not recommended due to the complexity of the form and because there may be penalties for underpayment.

If you are buying a property in England, Wales or Northern Ireland then you will usually need to pay stamp duty.

Our post-completion conveyancing team use online case management system to ensure the SDLT1 tax return is submitted to Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs (HMRC) as quickly as possible.

See table below for stamp duty examples for properties in North Yorkshire:

  Average selling price (February 2018) SDLT
Average price £255,490 £2,774.50
Average price (detached) £384,710 £9,235.50
Average new build £361,632 £8,081.60

Stamp duty relief for first-time buyers in North Yorkshire

Since 2017, first-time buyers only need to pay stamp duty on homes valued over £300k. Following a change in April 2016, a 3% surcharge is applied for purchases of additional property. For example, if an existing homeowner bought a second home in North Yorkshire for the average price of £255,490 the SDLT would be £20,439.20.

Conveyancing solicitors in North Yorkshire should confirm the correct amount is calculated.

Buying a flat? Leasehold conveyancing in North Yorkshire

New build site

The risks associated with purchasing a leasehold flat in the UK are increasingly coming to light. The many potential complications awaiting the unsuspecting buyer include:

  • exponential ground rents
  • overpriced managing agent packs
  • onerous covenants
Incomplete leasehold information, delivered by a conveyancing solicitor who has only ever handled freehold transactions, could lead to serious consequences.

A specialist conveyancing solicitor in North Yorkshire will consider potential leasehold issues, including flats in the same block with disparity between their leases, ground rents and service charges and understanding regional and era-specific nuances of leases.

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

Buying a 'New Build' property in North Yorkshire?

House being built

72 brand new properties have been bought in North Yorkshire in 2018 so far, based on statistics published by HM Land Registry. The average value of North Yorkshire new build properties is £271,705.

A new-build conveyancing solicitor in North Yorkshire must be familiar with local North Yorkshire factors and the complications associated with new build, including investigating developer incentives and ensuring that the contract is in the buyer's favour.

Our highly qualified new build conveyancing team specialise in helping new build purchasers obtain the best possible terms and working to tight developer deadlines.

Conservation areas

Whether you are going to buy a period cottage or a Regency townhouse, if the house is in an officially designated conservation area, any planned alterations to the house may not be permitted by Harrogate Borough Council.

Referred to as Article 4 directions, these building controls could include:

  • Restrictions on replacing windows
  • Restrictions preventing the addition of new access
  • Restrictions on side or two-storey extensions

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

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

Conveyancing - Selling a property in North Yorkshire

The legal process for a sale of a home is more straightforward than for a purchase. With a property purchase, the principle of 'buyer beware' means that the onus lies with the purchaser to establish that the home they are buying is not legally defective.

Conversely, with a sale, conveyancing solicitors in North Yorkshire acting for the seller for the most part just answer the buyer's solicitor's formal enquiries.

What proactive steps can you take to reduce the risk of an abortive sale?

A house or flat will often come with a range of possible issues (for example restrictions on how you can use the property or missing planning permission) that have the capacity to frustrate a sale for weeks (or worse).

It is better not to hide from the issue and hope any such problems will go away. The best course of action is to get legal advice and work to resolve it at the earliest stage.

Recommended reading:

Read more conveyancing advice for sellers.

Leasehold

The legal work for a leasehold flat or house is much more protracted than for a freehold property.

North Yorkshire conveyancing solicitors will also perform extra work, which could include sourcing an up-to-date service charge statement, through to a copy of any health and safety assessment for the common parts.

You should plan to instruct a property lawyer as early as possible to reduce leasehold-related delays.

What if Quittance is already acting for the other side?

Solicitors Regulation Authority rules prevent the same conveyancing solicitor from acting on both sides in a property sale and purchase. CLC-regulated conveyancers, however, can act for both sides.

If you are buying or selling a home in North Yorkshire, and a Quittance conveyancing solicitor is acting for the other side, you could contact a property solicitor firm in North Yorkshire to carry out your legal work.

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Conveyancing - Remortgaging a property in North Yorkshire

Reducing monthly repayments by finding a better rate is the main reason that homeowners decide to switch lenders. There are other reasons, such as releasing funds to help pay for home improvements, or moving from a tracker to a fixed-rate.

A proactive conveyancing solicitor in North Yorkshire will complete the conveyancing quickly, perhaps saving you from a payment or two at your old rate. With the base rate set at 0.5% (May 2018), fast conveyancing can be a contributing factor to getting on to the rate you want.

To make sure that the lender's interests are protected, a property lawyer 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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