Updated: October 12, 2018

Sheerness conveyancing solicitor fees

No Move, No Fee conveyancing in Sheerness

Conveyancing solicitor fees are paid your Sheerness conveyancing solicitor for the legal work associated with moving home.

How are Sheerness conveyancing fees calculated?

Our solicitors work on a No Sale, No Fee basis with no hidden extras, unlike some other conveyancing solicitors in Sheerness who offer services on an hourly-rate basis. Your quote will set out what you will be charged when your sale or purchase goes through.

Are there any other costs?

You will have to pay any 'disbursements', in addition to conveyancing solicitor fees.

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

See: How much should conveyancing fees cost?

How much will conveyancing in Sheerness cost in total?

Sheerness conveyancing solicitor fees should not vary, wherever you are buying or selling in the UK. However, the costs of certain disbursements can vary. As examples, Local Authority Search fees can vary and additional region-specific searches, e.g. transport searches, may be needed.

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

Quittance's conveyancing fees were considerably cheaper than the average solicitors' fees

Conveyancing - Buying a property in Sheerness

Caveat emptor, (Latin for "let the buyer beware"), was a key part of property law in England and Wales. This principle no longer applies, however, a purchaser must still investigate their intended purchase.

A Sheerness conveyancing solicitor will give advice following their enquiries, help with resolving any problems and ensure that the full legal ownership is transferred.

This part of the article provides recommendations for buyers who need conveyancing solicitors in Sheerness.

Your Sheerness conveyancing solicitor must be lender-approved

Before selecting a conveyancing solicitor in Sheerness, it is essential that you check that they can represent your lender, whether you are taking out a mortgage from the Dudley Building Society, Birmingham Midshires or any other lender.

Your lawyer may be unable to act for your lender, because some banks and building societies will only work with a select panel of legal practices.

If this is the case, the lender will require a second law firm to act in their interests, and you will be expected to pay this alternative lawyer's fees. This means the transaction could be delayed.

Not checking the lender panel status of your lawyer could jeopardise the sale.

Quittance Conveyancing can carry out the legal work for all major and minor banks and other lenders.

Swale Borough Council searches

Property searches are enquiries made of public bodies by Sheerness conveyancing solicitors to provide information about your planned purchase.

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

Homebuyers will be made aware if your lender requires any additional searches, for example a tin mining search or a mining search.

Property purchasers should anticipate a wait of around 7 weeks for Residential property searches supplied by Swale Borough Council. A local search provider will be able to provide this information faster.

Planning documents

Your conveyancing solicitor will request office copies from HMLR. This will help to expose planning issues. Examples of these include the title plan showing only very general boundaries or limits on the development of the property.

Swale Borough Council Council Tax

As a homeowner in Sheerness, the applicable rate of council tax will vary depending on the value of the home (as assessed in 1991) and the number of people living in it. E.g. the occupier of a Band B property in the Swale Borough Council area would pay annual council tax of £1,304.

A conveyancing solicitor in Sheerness will inform a purchaser of the property's band after this is confirmed by the searches.

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 £978.

Other discounts and exemptions may also apply, e.g. where the home is empty or unfurnished for a maximum of 60 days or if the property is owned by a charity and is unoccupied. The Valuation Office Agency (VOA) calculate council tax bands for new build properties, and where the owner has requested a revaluation.

Band Swale Borough Council Tax (2018)
A £1,118
B £1,304
C £1,491
D £1,677
E £2,050
F £2,423
G £2,795
H £3,354

Can I challenge the council tax banding?

A homeowner can challenge the council tax band after moving in. Between April 2016 and April 2017, 30 council tax challenges were made. 10 were approved and the tax was reduced. Contact the VOA for more information on how to challenge your tax band:

Valuation Office Agency
Anchorage House
High St
Chatham
ME4 4WD
Kent

Stamp Duty on Sheerness properties

If you are buying a residential property that costs over £125k, then you will have to pay stamp duty to HMRC. Submitting the SDLT1 form to HMRC is difficult and time consuming. The majority of buyers get their conveyancing solicitor to do it for them.

Quittance use the latest case management integration with HMRC to avoid errors and ensure there are no late-filing penalties.

This table sets out Stamp Duty Land Tax for average property in Sheerness:

  Average selling price (2017) SDLT
Average price £222,948 £1,958.96
Average price (detached) £303,519 £5,175.95
Average new build £322,498 £6,124.90

Stamp duty relief for first-time buyers in Sheerness

In Nov 2017, it was announced that first-time buyers would be exempt from paying stamp duty on homes below £300,000. Homeowners must pay a higher rate of SDLT for the purchase of a second home. So if a second home was bought for £222,948 then the stamp duty total will be £11,147.40.

Sheerness conveyancing solicitors will ensure the correct tax is paid.

Buying a flat? Leasehold conveyancing in Sheerness

New build site

Purchasing a leasehold property without knowing what you are getting into can be risky. The many potential complications awaiting an uninformed purchaser could include increasing ground rents and sinking fund issues.

Bad or incomplete leasehold advice, from a solicitor with limited leasehold experience, could have serious financial consequences.

If you intend to purchase a house or flat with a lease, a experienced conveyancing solicitor in Sheerness will consider possible leasehold issues, e.g. :

  • sometimes ancient and arcane lease documents
  • absent freeholders
  • service charges for relevant date periods
  • missing building regs and planning

Make sure that you are fully-informed regarding your planned purchase thanks to our leasehold conveyancing solicitors.

Buying a 'New Build' property in Sheerness?

House being built

3 new builds have been bought in Sheerness in 2018 so far, according to data gathered by the Land Registry. The average cost of Sheerness new build properties is £310,832.

The legal side of acquiring a new build home is generally more complex than 'standard conveyancing'. To avoid potential problems a Sheerness conveyancing solicitor must be aware of local issues and should consider a range of factors, such as dealing with lender conditions and investigating road and drainage issues.

Our award-winning new build team are specialists in meeting short developer deadlines and ensuring that new build contracts favour the client as much as possible.

Conservation areas in Kent

If you are purchasing a property in a conservation area in Sheerness, the property must not breach any conservation area building controls. These constraints, referred to as Article 4 Directions, may include restrictions on the removal of front boundary walls, limitations on new outbuildings or restrictions on the display of advertisements.

If a property is in breach, the local council could order the owner to pay for the work needed to make the home compliant, even if the previous owner carried out the alterations.

Your Quittance conveyancing solicitor will confirm if the property you are purchasing is located in a conservation area in Sheerness.

Conveyancing - Selling a property in Sheerness

Conveyancing for a sale of a house or flat is generally simpler than for a purchase. The buyer carries out a detailed investigation on your home, whilst conveyancing solicitors in Sheerness acting for the seller essentially just answers the purchaser's enquiries.

Factors that could delay or endanger a property sale

A home will frequently have numerous problems (for example not having permission for alterations when in a conservation area or not being insurable) that have the capacity to stop a sale in its tracks.

It is better not to hide from the issue, trusting that the issue won't be discovered - a better course of action will be to get legal advice and work to resolve it promptly.

Recommended reading:

Read more conveyancing advice for sellers.

Leasehold

Conveyancing for a leasehold flat (leasehold houses are not common) is a great deal more difficult than for a more straightforward freehold house.

The complex nature of leasehold property means that conveyancing solicitors in Sheerness will usually undertake additional legal work, which could include requesting the latest service charge and ground rent statement, through to any documents pertaining to a variation of the terms of the lease.

In order to resolve any leasehold difficulties faster, it is strongly advised that you instruct a lawyer as soon as the decision is made to sell.

What if you are already acting for the other side?

CLC-regulated conveyancers can act for both sides. However, Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) rules prevent the same conveyancing solicitor from acting on both sides in a house sale.

If you are buying or selling a Sheerness home, and one of our conveyancing solicitors is doing the legal work for the other side, you could contact a property solicitor firm in Sheerness to carry out your legal work.

Local Sheerness conveyancing solicitor directory

  • John Copland & Son, 77 High Street, Sheerness, Kent, ME12 1TY
  • County Solicitors Limited, 13-15 Minster Road, Minster On Sea, Sheerness, Kent, ME12 3JE

Conveyancing - Remortgaging a property in Sheerness

Whilst there are many reasons to consider remortgaging, people usually remortgage a home to secure a lower interest rate.

An efficient conveyancing solicitor in Sheerness can reduce the remortgage processing time, helping you get onto the lower rate earlier. With the base rate now at 0.5% (May 2018), fast conveyancing can play a key role in getting on to the rate you want.

In order to certify that the interests of the lender are covered, the property lawyer handling your remortgage will represent both you and the new 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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