Updated: October 12, 2018

Rochford conveyancing solicitor fees and costs

No Move, No Fee conveyancing in Rochford

Conveyancing solicitor fees are the costs you pay to conveyancing solicitors in Rochford for the legal work for a home sale or purchase.

How are Rochford conveyancing fees calculated?

Our conveyancers work on a fixed No Sale, No Fee conveyancing basis with no hidden extras, unlike some other conveyancing solicitors in Rochford who carry out the legal work on a cost per hour basis. Your conveyancing quote will set out all fees and disbursements you will need to pay when your sale or purchase goes through.

Are there any other costs?

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

Disbursements are fees that a property lawyer must pay to other companies during the process of buying or selling your home, such as property searches or ID checks.

See: A guide to all conveyancing fees

How much will the total conveyancing fees in Rochford cost?

Although conveyancing fees in Rochford will usually match prices elsewhere in the UK, there may be some variation in certain disbursements. For example, Local Authority (LA) Search fees will vary and specific extra searches, e.g. a commons registration search, may be necessary.

For a standard sale or purchase, the fees we quote are the fees you pay. With Quittance, 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 fees were cheaper - less than half the Estate Agent's recommended solicitor's fees

Conveyancing - Buying a property in Rochford

Under recent changes to English and Welsh property law, a seller must now disclose issues concerning their property to their estate agent and to the purchaser.

That said, it remains the responsibility of the conveyancing solicitor in Rochford to investigate the property, so that they can report back in detail to the buyer and the lender, make practical suggestions and register the new owner's title at the Land Registry.

The following considers elements of the legal process for conveyancing solicitors in Rochford where a deeper understanding of the legal technicalities is required.

Your Rochford conveyancing solicitor must be lender-approved

Irrespective of whether you are obtaining a mortgage from the Dudley Building Society, the Co-operative Bank or any other lender, before appointing a conveyancing solicitor in Rochford it is vital that you check that they can act for your chosen lender.

Your conveyancer may not be able to carry out the legal work on behalf of your chosen lender, because some mortgage lenders are only prepared to work with a restricted group of legal practices.

Under these circumstances, the lender will likely need a different legal firm to carry out the legal work, and you will then have to cover this alternate lawyer's fees. This means the transaction could be delayed.

Not checking your solicitor's lender panel status could mean significant delays.

Our solicitors can act for all lenders.

Searches (Rochford District Council)

Searches will be applied for by Rochford conveyancing solicitors to unearth any broader issues that might possibly reduce how much the property you are purchasing is worth.

Mortgagees typically also require searches to be applied for. Required searches will include:

  • Local Authority search - exposes issues like road schemes that could affect the property
  • Drainage & Water search - identifies whether the owner or local authority must pay for the maintenance of water mains and sewers
  • Environmental search - identifies nearby landfill and contaminated land sites (within 500 metres), and if there has been any historic flooding or mining subsidence.
  • Chancel repair liability - some Rochford property may still owe a liability to the local parish for repairs. Insurance can be taken out to protect against this risk.

Your lawyer will notify you if your lender requires any additional searches, e.g. a Crossrail search or a geological search.

Homebuyers should expect to wait approximately 15 weeks for Residential property searches supplied by Rochford District Council. A private search company will be able to provide this information sooner.

Ensuring planning permission is in place

Office copies will also be applied for from HM Land Registry by the conveyancing solicitor acting for the buyer, helping to evidence any potential issues. These issues could include restrictions that limit alterations or errors on the title plan.

Rochford District Council Council Tax

Rochford District Council calculate council tax on Rochford homes based on the number of occupants and the historic value of the property (as valued at 1 April 1991). For example, a property in the Rochford District Council area in Band D would pay £1,731 per annum.

Conveyancing solicitors in Rochford will inform the purchaser of the home's council tax band as soon as they are made aware.

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 £1,298.

Other discounts and exemptions could also apply, e.g. unoccupied properties undergoing major repairs or structural changes or where the property is occupied solely by students.

Band Rochford District Council Tax (2018)
A £1,154
B £1,346
C £1,538
D £1,731
E £2,115
F £2,500
G £2,885
H £3,461

Can I lower my band?

To appeal contact:

Valuation Office Agency
London House
New London Rd
Chelmsford
CM2 0QL
Essex

A homeowner can challenge the council tax band after moving in. Between April 2016 and April 2017, 30 council tax challenges were made, of which 10 saw a subsequent reduction.

Stamp Duty on Rochford properties

The buyer (rather than the seller) will have to pay stamp duty on the purchase price of the residential property if it exceeds £125k. Stamp duty is paid to HMRC by completing an SDLT1 form. The form is lengthy and complex.

Quittance will complete the SDLT1 form for you at the point your purchase completes.

See examples for Rochford properties:

  Average selling price (2018 to date) Stamp Duty Land Tax
Average price £349,502 £7,475.10
Average price (detached) £469,192 £13,459.60
Average new build £340,498 £7,024.90
Following a change in April 2016, a higher rate of 3% is applied for purchases of additional property. For example, if an existing homeowner bought a second property in Rochford for the average price of £349,502 the SDLT would be £27,960.16.

Stamp duty relief for first-time buyers in Rochford

Since 11/17, first-time buyers only need to pay stamp duty on properties valued over £300k.

Conveyancing solicitors in Rochford will confirm the correct calculation is made.

Buying a flat? Leasehold conveyancing in Rochford

New build site

Over 100,000 homeowners in the UK face leases with unreasonable terms. There are any number of legal technicalities that could be lying in wait for an uninformed purchaser, including:

  • onerous clauses in the lease
  • incomplete management company accounts
  • unfair developer practices
  • ground rent multipliers
Serious financial ramifications can result from a less-experienced property lawyer's misguided leasehold advice.

A good conveyancing solicitor in Rochford will investigate aspects of the leasehold purchase, including :

  • understanding regional and era-specific nuances of leases
  • dealing with landlords
  • any recent demands for service charges and ground rent
  • type of leasehold (i.e. flat/shared ownership/long leasehold house)

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

Buying a 'New Build' property in Rochford?

House being built

10 newly-constructed homes have been bought in Rochford in 2018 so far, (sce: HM Land Registry). The average cost of a new build property in Rochford is £340,498.

A new-build conveyancing solicitor in Rochford must be aware of regional factors and new build's additional complexities, e.g. dealing with incomplete service connection agreements, handling unreasonable delays and working with warranty providers such as NHBC Buildmark, Building Zone and ACHI.

Our award-winning team of conveyancers are specialists in working to tight developer deadlines and new build purchases.

Conservation areas in Essex

When carrying out the conveyancing for a purchase in Rochford, a conveyancing solicitor will need to check whether the property is in one of Rochford's conservation areas. If it is, the home could be affected by certain building controls. Referred to as Article 4 directions, these building controls can include:

  • Restrictions on the removal or addition of front boundary walls
  • Restrictions on the installation of skylights
  • Limits on extensions (even if within Permitted Development rights)

The new owner could be ordered to pay for necessary changes to bring a property in line with current regulations, even if the changes were made by the previous owner.

Parts of Rochford lie within a Rochford LPA-governed conservation area. Canewdon Church, Great Wakering and Battlesbridge are among the conservation areas in Rochford. Your conveyancing solicitor will confirm whether the property you are buying is located in one of Rochford's conservation areas.

Conveyancing - Selling a property in Rochford

The legal side of a sale of a house or flat is simpler than when buying. The buyer's conveyancing solicitor undertakes an investigation on the home, whilst conveyancing solicitors in Rochford acting for the seller essentially just answers the buyer's questions.

Factors that could delay or endanger your property sale

A property can face a broad spectrum of legal problems (such as not being connected to the water mains or having a defective lease) that might prolong a purchase for several weeks.

Don't shy away from finding a solution and hope the buyer's solicitor won't notice - speak to an expert instead, face the issues head on, and find a solution promptly.

Recommended reading:

For more conveyancing advice for sellers click here.

Leasehold

The conveyancing process for a leasehold flat is a great deal more specialised than for a freehold house.

Rochford conveyancing solicitors will also perform extra work, and this could include collating all relevant freeholder information, through to details of any breach of the terms of the lease.

It is strongly advised that you instruct a property lawyer with leasehold experience as soon as is practicable to avoid undue delays.

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

A conveyancer who is regulated by the CLC can act for both sides. However, SRA rules prevent a single conveyancing solicitor from acting on both sides in a house sale and purchase.

You can contact a local Rochford conveyancing solicitor firm to carry out your legal work, if a Quittance conveyancing solicitor is acting for the other side.

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Conveyancing - Remortgaging a property in Rochford

Although there are many reasons to remortgage, people will generally remortgage their home to reduce the monthly repayments.

Homeowners should be able to enjoy a better rate sooner with a more efficient conveyancing solicitor in Rochford, accelerating the time taken to complete the process. With the base rate now at 0.5% (May 2018) and future interest rate changes hard to predict, fast conveyancing can be a contributing factor to getting on to the rate you want.

The property lawyer will represent both you and your new bank or building society to ensure the parties' interests are protected and the lender's new interest is correctly registered.

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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