Updated: October 12, 2018

Northwich conveyancing solicitor fees and costs

No Move, No Fee conveyancing in Northwich

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

Do Northwich conveyancing solicitors work on a fixed fee basis?

Some conveyancing solicitors in Northwich carry out the legal work on a price per hour basis. Some solicitors will complete the work on a fixed 'No Move, No Fee' basis. Our solicitors work on fixed legal fees (known as 'No Sale, No Fee' or 'No Move, No Fee'), with no unexpected, additional costs. Your quote will set out exactly what you will be charged when your sale or purchase completes.

Are there any other costs?

You will need to budget for 'disbursements', in addition to conveyancing solicitor fees.

Disbursements are the third-party costs that your conveyancer will pass on to you at the end of the conveyancing process. These include costs like bankruptcy checks or identity verification checks.

See: Complete list of conveyancing fees and disbursements

How much will the total Northwich solicitor conveyancing fees be?

Whilst conveyancing fees in Northwich will usually match prices elsewhere in the UK, there can be variation in the disbursements required. As examples, additional region-specific searches, such as a mining search, may be needed and Local Authority Search fees can vary.

For standard conveyancing transactions, the conveyancing fee we quote is the fee you pay. With Quittance, there are absolutely no hidden costs. Calculate the conveyancing fees for your move, with our conveyancing fees calculator: Click here

Quittance's conveyancing fees were substantially lower than the average solicitors' fees, and their service was first-rate

Conveyancing - Buying a property in Northwich

When carrying out the legal work for a property purchase, a conveyancing solicitor in Northwich will carry out due diligence on the tenure and investigate the legal ownership rights or 'title' of the property and make their "report on title".

The buyer's property lawyer will offer suggestions and advice after making their enquiries, find solutions to outstanding defects and other issues and register the title in the new owner's name.

The following section offers assistance for people who want conveyancing solicitors in Northwich for a purchase.

Your Northwich conveyancing solicitor must be lender-approved

There are many lenders, from a less common lender like the Earl Shilton Building Society, to a large lender such as Santander. Before appointing a Northwich conveyancing solicitor, whoever you choose, it is paramount that you confirm that they can act for your mortgage lender.

Some mortgage lenders are only prepared to work with a select panel of legal firms that meet stringent criteria. If a conveyancer cannot act for your mortgage lender, the lender will need a different law firm to act in their interests.

You will usually need to pay this substitute solicitor's costs, and the conveyancing process can take much longer.

Failing to check your lawyer's lender panel status can create problems and delays.

Quittance Conveyancing are approved to act for all banks and building societies.

Searches (Cheshire West and Chester Council)

Residential property searches are enquiries made by Northwich conveyancing solicitors to identify information and potential issues affecting your new home.

Mortgagees also expect a list of searches to be applied for. Required searches will include:

  • Local Authority (LA) search - contains information about the property and surrounding area held by Cheshire West and Chester Council
  • Environmental search - shows risks within 500 metres of the property, such as toxic chemicals in the land
  • Drainage & Water search - identifies the location of sewers and water mains, and will confirm whether these are maintained by the local council.
  • Chancel repair liability - involves the potential liability owed by the owners of certain property to pay for local parish church repairs. Insurance can be arranged to cover this risk.

Buyers will be informed if your mortgage lender insists on any more searches, such as a Crossrail search or a Forestry Commission search.

The typical lead time for property searches obtained from Cheshire West and Chester Council is 8 weeks, so faster personal (as opposed to official) searches will be recommended.

Planning permissions

The conveyancing solicitor acting for the buyer will also order an 'Official Copy of the Title Register' from HMLR. This will help to identify potential planning issues, such as rights or restrictions on how the property may be used or the title plan showing only very general boundaries.

Cheshire West and Chester Council Council Tax

The council tax paid by a homeowner is based on a number of factors such as the number of occupants and the property's value as at 1 April 1991 (England) or 1 April 2003 (Wales). For instance for an average Valuation Band B residential property in Northwich, the council tax would be £1,345 per year.

A conveyancing solicitor in Northwich will inform a buyer of the property's 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 (25%) would reduce the tax due to £1,009.

Other discounts and exemptions may also apply, for example where the home is empty or unfurnished for a maximum of 60 days or if an occupier is a student nurse. A property constructed after 1991 is assessed and given a banding by the Valuation Office Agency.

Band Cheshire West and Chester Council Tax (2018)
A £1,153
B £1,345
C £1,537
D £1,729
E £2,113
F £2,498
G £2,882
H £3,458

Is it possible to appeal?

In the 2016/17 financial year, 100 council tax challenges were made. 40 saw a reduction. Contact the VOA for more information on how to challenge your tax band:

Valuation Office Agency
2nd Floor
Wellington House
38-44 Delamere St

Stamp Duty on Northwich properties

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

If a property is purchased for £125,000 or less, no SDLT is payable. Above this, most homebuyers will need to pay SDLT.

Quittance is able to administer the SDLT process faster and more efficiently than ever, using integrated online systems.

See stamp duty examples for properties in Northwich:

  Average selling price (2017) Stamp Duty
Average price £225,976 £2,019.52
Average price (detached) £333,934 £6,696.70
Average new build £279,789 £3,989.45
If you are buying a second home for more than £40,000 then you will have to pay a higher SDLT rate of 3%. E.g. if a second property was bought for £225,976 then the stamp duty including the surcharge would be £11,298.80. .

Stamp duty relief for first-time buyers in Northwich

As from 11/17, first-time buyers will not have to pay any stamp duty if the purchase price is below £300k.

Northwich conveyancing solicitors should confirm their client pays the right amount.

Buying a flat? Leasehold conveyancing in Northwich

New build site

It has been recently reported that over 100,000 homeowners in England face property leases with problematic terms. The numerous common problems lying in wait for an uninformed purchaser could include leases with fewer than 80 years to run, increasing ground rents and reversionary interests.

Incomplete leasehold information, delivered by an inexperienced property lawyer, can have serious consequences.

If you intend to buy a leasehold home, a good conveyancing solicitor in Northwich will consider possible leasehold issues, such as dealing with landlords, reviewing the lease itself (some leases are over 100 years old) and share of freehold complexity.

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

Buying a 'New Build' property in Northwich?

New build site

The average purchase price of Northwich new build homes is £274,922. 4 new build houses and flats have been bought in Northwich in 2018 so far.

A new-build conveyancing solicitor in Northwich must be aware of both local Northwich issues as well as the added complexities associated with new build, including ensuring that the contract is in the buyer's favour, handling reservation fees and registering ownership with warranty providers such as NHBC Buildmark, Advantage and Trenwick International.

Our new build team specialise in helping new build purchasers obtain the best possible terms and meeting short developer deadlines.

Conservation areas in Cheshire

Your conveyancing solicitor will confirm whether the property you are purchasing is in one of Northwich's conservation areas. If it is, the property could be affected by specific conditions. These building controls, called Article 4 Directions, may include:

  • Limits on roof terraces
  • Restrictions on dormer windows
  • Needing consent to alter doors and guttering

If a property is in breach, you could be required by law by the local authority to return the home to its earlier condition, even if the previous owner carried out the alterations.

Your conveyancing solicitor will confirm whether the property you are buying is located in one of Northwich's conservation areas.

Conveyancing - Selling a property in Northwich

The legal process for a house sale is much simpler than when buying. With a property purchase, caveat-emptor' means that the onus is solely on the buyer to discover whether the property's title is mortgageable and is (or can be) registered at the Land Registry.

Conversely, when selling, conveyancing solicitors in Northwich acting for the seller only need to answer the purchaser's enquiries.

What factors could threaten your sale?

Properties can be burdened by a range of possible complications (e.g. a dispute with a neighbour or issues with neighbours' rights over the property) that have the capacity to prevent a purchase from completing on time.

In the majority of cases, you should address these issues immediately.

Recommended reading:

Read more helpful advice for sellers here.

Selling a leasehold property

Conveyancing for a leasehold flat is a great deal more time-consuming compared to a freehold house.

The complex nature of leasehold property means that conveyancing solicitors in Northwich will need to conduct additional work, for example obtaining the latest service charge and ground rent statement or any information about regulations affecting the property that are not in the lease.

In order to resolve any leasehold issues faster, it is strongly advised that the seller instruct a lawyer as soon as an estate agent is chosen.

Can your conveyancing solicitors act for both sides?

Conveyancers regulated by the CLC can act for both the buyer and the seller. However, SRA regulations restrict the same conveyancing solicitor from working on behalf of both sides in a property sale.

You could contact a law firm in Northwich to carry out your legal work, if a Quittance solicitor is carrying out the legal work for the other side.

Local Northwich conveyancing solicitor directory

  • Butcher and Barlow LLP, Dane Bridge Chambers, 3-5 London Road, Northwich, Cheshire, CW9 5EY
  • Dixon Rigby Keogh Limited, Old Bank Chambers, 32 High Street, Northwich, Cheshire, CW9 5BL
  • Susan Howarth & Co Solicitors Ltd, 41 Chester Way, Northwich, Cheshire, CW9 5JE
  • Cf Law Limited, 20 Winnington Street, Northwich, Cheshire, CW8 1AF
  • Moss Law Limited, 2 Castle Street, Northwich, Cheshire, CW8 1AB

Conveyancing - Remortgaging a property in Northwich

The main reason homeowners remortgage their home is to reduce the monthly repayments. There are other reasons to think about remortgaging, such as switching from interest-only to repayment, or releasing funds to help kids get on the property ladder.

A proactive conveyancing solicitor in Northwich can reduce the remortgage processing time, meaning you move to your lower rate sooner. With the future of interest rates uncertain, fast conveyancing can be a crucial factor in getting on to the rate you want.

It is important that the property lawyer carrying out the remortgage can also act for the new lender. Quittance Conveyancing are panel members of all major banks and building societies. So whether you are moving to a variable-rate with Lloyds Bank or to a variable-rate mortgage with Virgin Money, our remortgage team can assist.

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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