Updated: October 12, 2018

Peacehaven conveyancing solicitor fees and costs

No Move, No Fee conveyancing in Peacehaven

Conveyancing solicitor fees are the costs you pay to your Peacehaven conveyancing solicitor for the legal work for a home sale or purchase.

Are Peacehaven conveyancing fees and costs fixed?

Some conveyancing solicitors in Peacehaven carry out the legal work on a cost per hour basis, while other property lawyers will work for a fixed fee (known as 'No Move, No Fee'). Quittance's conveyancing solicitors work on a fixed No Sale, No Fee conveyancing basis, with no hidden costs. Your quote will explain exactly what you will need to pay when your sale or purchase goes through.

Besides conveyancing fees, what other costs are there?

You must cover the cost of any 'disbursements', on top of the conveyancing fees.

Disbursements are the costs and expenses a solicitor needs to pay out on behalf of a client, such as Land Registry fees or office copies and title plans.

See: Complete list of conveyancing fees and disbursements

How much will the total Peacehaven solicitor conveyancing fees be?

Peacehaven conveyancing solicitor fees should be the same as anywhere else in the UK. However, there may be some variation in certain disbursements. As examples, additional region-specific searches, such as a mining search, may be needed and Local Authority Search fees can vary.

For a standard sale or purchase, the fees we quote are the fees you pay. With Quittance, there are absolutely no hidden costs. To calculate the conveyancing fees for your move, try our conveyancing fees quote calculator: Click here

Quittance delivered an excellent service at the lowest conveyancing fees we could find

Conveyancing - Buying a property in Peacehaven

Caveat emptor (buyer beware), was a key part of English property law. Since 2013, this maxim no longer applies, however, it remains the duty of a buyer's legal representative to carry out due diligence on a planned purchase.

The conveyancing solicitor in Peacehaven will offer suggestions and advice once their enquiries are complete, iron out any legal issues and ensure that the change of ownership is registered at the Land Registry.

This section of the article discusses the types of residential property that carry additional risk for people looking for conveyancing solicitors in Peacehaven for a purchase.

Your Peacehaven conveyancing solicitor must be lender-approved

Before appointing a Peacehaven conveyancing solicitor, it is vital that you check that they are approved by your mortgage lender, whether you are obtaining a mortgage from Platform, the Scottish Building Society or any other lender.

Your lawyer may be unable to act for your mortgage lender, because some lenders are only prepared to work with a select panel of solicitors or licensed conveyancers.

If that is the case, the lender will require a different law firm to complete the legal work, and you will usually need to pay this alternate lawyer's fees. The additional work can mean the process takes much longer.

Failing to check your solicitor's lender panel status can mean significant delays.

Our conveyancing solicitors can perform the conveyancing for all banks and building societies.

Property Searches (Lewes District Council)

Residential property searches will be applied for by Peacehaven conveyancing solicitors to unearth problems that might possibly undermine how much the property you are purchasing will be worth. They include:

  • Local Authority (LA) search - includes a list of planning decisions that could affect the property
  • Environmental search - environmental issues that could adversely affect the property
  • Drainage & Water search - identifies whether the owner or local authority must pay for the maintenance of water mains and sewers
  • Chancel repair liability - describes the insurance to protect against any liability to the local parish for repairs.

Purchasers will be told if your mortgage lender needs any further searches, e.g. a more detailed flood report or a commons registration search.

Lewes District Council has an average lead time of 20 weeks for Residential property searches. Your conveyancer will alternatively recommend using a faster search agent.

Planning searches

The conveyancing solicitor acting for the buyer will apply for an 'Official Copy of the Title Register' from HMLR. This will help to expose any issues. Examples of these include that a restrictive covenant has been breached or errors on the title plan.

Lewes District Council Council Tax

Lewes District Council calculate your council tax based on various criteria such as the square footage of the property and the value of the home as determined by the VOA in 1991 (or 2003 in Wales). For instance the occupier of a Tax Band E property in the Lewes District Council area would pay annual council tax of £2,376.

A conveyancing solicitor in Peacehaven will inform the purchaser of the property's band once they are themselves notified.

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 £1,782.

Other discounts and exemptions may also apply, e.g. where the home is empty or unfurnished for a maximum of 60 days or where an inhabitant is an 18 year old for whom child benefit is payable.

Band Lewes District Council Tax (2018)
A £1,296
B £1,512
C £1,728
D £1,944
E £2,376
F £2,808
G £3,240
H £3,889

Is it possible to reduce my council tax band?

It is possible to challenge the council tax band after moving in. Between April 2016 and April 2017, 30 council tax challenges were made, of which 10 were upheld and refunds awarded. To appeal contact:

Valuation Office Agency
St. Annes House
2 St. Annes Rd
Eastbourne
BN21 3LG
East Sussex

Stamp Duty on Peacehaven properties

Delays and penalties await those who mishandle the stamp duty administration process.

The vast majority of people will have their conveyancing solicitor complete the SDLT1 return on their behalf.

Stamp Duty Land Tax is a tax payable on all UK properties where the purchase price exceeds £125,000 (£145,000 in Scotland).

Quittance Conveyancing's investment in the latest case management system means that HMRC filing form rejections are a thing of the past.

This table sets out SDLT for property in Peacehaven:

  Average sale price (2017) SDLT
Average price £282,396 £4,119.80
Average price (detached) £339,484 £6,974.20
Average new build £324,066 £6,203.30

Stamp duty relief for first-time buyers in Peacehaven

Since the budget announcement in 2017, if you are a first-time buyer, you only pay stamp duty on property valued at over £300,000 with reduced rates up to £500,000. If you already own another home or share in a home you will be subject to a 3% SDLT surcharge. For example, if a property owner bought a second home in Peacehaven for the average price of £282,396 the SDLT would be £22,591.68.

Conveyancing solicitors in Peacehaven should ensure the correct amount is calculated.

Buying a flat? Leasehold conveyancing in Peacehaven

New build site

The potential risks associated with buying a leasehold property in the UK are well publicised. Numerous technical obstacles may be awaiting an uninformed purchaser, including:

  • unpaid service charges by the existing leaseholder
  • absent freeholders
  • unreasonable lease extension premiums
  • exponential ground rents
Erroneous leasehold advice, from an inexperienced conveyancer, could have costly, long-term consequences.

If you intend to purchase a leasehold property, a competent conveyancing solicitor in Peacehaven will consider potential leasehold issues, such as :

  • understanding regional and era-specific nuances of leases
  • dealing with freeholders
  • possible service charge shortfalls
  • residents? management company
  • residents' memoranda and articles of association

Make sure that you are aware of all the potential issues and costs associated with the lease - Call Quittance Conveyancing's specialist leasehold conveyancing solicitors on 0800 612 0377.

Buying a 'New Build' property in Peacehaven?

House being built

The average sale price of Peacehaven new build properties is £324,066, according to data sourced by HMLR. 13 new build properties were purchased in Peacehaven last year.

Purchasing a new build property is more involved than any other type of conveyancing. To prevent difficulties arising a Peacehaven conveyancing solicitor must be conscious of local Peacehaven issues and must check a range of issues, like checking new build mortgage procedures are followed and confirming building regulation compliance.

Quittance Conveyancing deliver a specialist assessment of the legal title of the property, with a close eye on issues ranging from the home's subsequent mortgageability to sharply increasing ground rent and service charges (where applicable).

Conservation areas in East Sussex

If you are planning to purchase a house in one of Peacehaven's conservation areas, the property must not breach any conservation area conditions. Called Article 4 directions, these restrictions could include a wide range of constraints from restrictions on the addition of cladding, to restrictions preventing the addition of frontal sloping rooflights.

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

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

Conveyancing - Selling a property in Peacehaven

The legal process for a property sale is generally simpler than for a purchase. When property changes hands, the principle of 'buyer beware' means that the onus is on the buyer to satisfy themselves that the home they are buying is mortgageable and free from legal issues.

In contrast, for a sale, conveyancing solicitors in Peacehaven acting for the existing owner for the most part just answer the buyer's solicitor's formal enquiries.

What factors could threaten your sale?

Obstacles, like having a defective lease, have the capacity to protract your move if not dealt with promptly.

It is usually recommended for sellers to handle any such problems without delay.

Useful reading:

Read more conveyancing advice for sellers.

Leasehold

The legal work for a leasehold flat (leasehold houses are rare) is much more difficult than it is for a freehold home.

Peacehaven conveyancing solicitors will also need to carry out additional work, such as obtaining all relevant freeholder information, through to the minutes of the last AGM (if there is a management company).

To accelerate the handling of the leasehold work, it is strongly advised that you instruct a property lawyer with leasehold experience as soon as the decision is made to sell.

Can your conveyancing solicitors act for the buyer and the seller in one transaction?

Solicitors Regulation Authority rules prevent the same conveyancing solicitor from acting on both sides in a house sale. However, a conveyancer who is regulated by the CLC, can act for both the buyer and the seller.

You may want to instruct a property solicitor firm in Peacehaven to carry out your legal work, if we are acting for the other side.

Local Peacehaven conveyancing solicitor directory

  • Barwells Legal Limited, 238 South Coast Road, Peacehaven, East Sussex, BN10 8JS
  • Lawson Lewis Blakers Ltd, 10a Horsham Avenue, Peacehaven, East Sussex, BN10 8LL

Conveyancing - Remortgaging a property in Peacehaven

Although people consider remortgaging for a range of reasons, homeowners generally remortgage a home to save money with a lower rate.

A proactive conveyancing solicitor in Peacehaven will complete the conveyancing quickly, perhaps saving you from a payment or two at your old rate. With the Bank of England base rate now at 0.5% (May 2018), fast conveyancing can be a contributing factor to securing your preferred rate.

It is vitally important that the property lawyer handling your remortgage can also represent your chosen mortgage provider. Our conveyancing team are on the panel for all major UK lenders. So whether you are switching to a tracker with the Bank of Scotland or to a fixed-rate mortgage with the Swansea Building Society, our remortgage specialists 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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