Updated: October 12, 2018

Skelmersdale conveyancing solicitor fees and costs

No Move, No Fee conveyancing in Skelmersdale

Conveyancing solicitor fees will be paid to your Skelmersdale conveyancing solicitor for the legal work associated with moving home.

Are Skelmersdale conveyancing fees and costs fixed?

Quittance's conveyancing solicitors work on a fixed No Sale, No Fee basis with no hidden costs, unlike some other conveyancing solicitors in Skelmersdale who carry out the legal work on a cost per hour basis. Your quote sets out what you will be charged when your property transaction has completed.

Besides conveyancing fees, what other costs are there?

You must cover the cost of any 'disbursements', in addition to conveyancing solicitor fees.

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 Land Registry fees or TT fees.

See: How much should conveyancing fees cost?

How much will conveyancing in Skelmersdale cost in total?

Skelmersdale conveyancing solicitor fees will not vary, wherever you are buying or selling in the UK. There may, however, be some variation in certain disbursements. For example, additional region-specific searches, e.g. a commons registration search, may be needed and Local Authority Search fees can vary.

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

Quittance's fees were cheaper - less than half the Estate Agent's recommended solicitor's fees

Conveyancing - Buying a property in Skelmersdale

Caveat emptor (buyer beware), was the legal principle of property law in England and Wales. After the introduction of the Consumer Trading Regulations (CPR), this rule no longer applies. However, the buyer still will need to carry out due diligence on a planned purchase.

A conveyancing solicitor in Skelmersdale will offer suggestions and advice after making their enquiries, deal with any legal problems and register the title in the new owner's name.

This article discusses the aspects of the legal process for conveyancing solicitors in Skelmersdale where greater expertise is necessary.

Your Skelmersdale conveyancing solicitor must be lender-approved

Regardless of whether your mortgage is with a financial institution like St James Place Bank or a major lender such as the Yorkshire Building Society, before you appoint a Skelmersdale conveyancing solicitor it is paramount that you confirm that they are approved by your mortgage lender.

Some lenders will only work with a restricted panel of firms that meet stringent criteria. If your conveyancer is not on the panel of your mortgage lender, the lender will likely require an alternative firm to complete the legal work.

The borrower will usually need to pay this second solicitor's fees, and weeks could be added to the conveyancing process.

Serious delays can occur if you fail to check your conveyancing lawyer's lender panel status.

Quittance Conveyancing can act for all mortgage lenders.

Searches (West Lancashire District Council)

Searches are questions asked of various bodies by Skelmersdale conveyancing solicitors to provide information about your new home.

Searches are primarily performed to meet the mortgage lender's criteria, and include the local authority (LA) search, environmental search, drainage & water search and chancel repair liability.

Additional searches, such as a tin mining search or a disadvantaged area search, may also be advised in the initial search results.

The estimated lead time for Residential property searches provided by West Lancashire District Council is 4 weeks. In these circumstances, faster personal searches will be advisable.

Planning documents

Official Entries will also be sourced from the Land Registry by the purchaser's conveyancing solicitor. This helps to find planning issues, for example a difference between the agent's floorplan and the title plan or a restrictive covenant against certain alterations.

West Lancashire District Council Council Tax

West Lancashire District Council calculate your council tax based on various criteria such as the square footage of the property and the property's value as at 1 April 1991 (England) or 1 April 2003 (Wales). For example, for an average Band B property in Skelmersdale, the amount of council tax would be £1,365.

A conveyancing solicitor in Skelmersdale will inform the purchaser 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 £1,023.

Other discounts and exemptions may also apply, for example unoccupied properties undergoing major repairs or if an occupier is an apprentice school leaver or YTS trainee. The Valuation Office Agency calculate council tax bandings for newly-constructed property, and where the owner has requested a revaluation.

Band West Lancashire District Council Tax (2018)
A £1,170
B £1,365
C £1,560
D £1,755
E £2,144
F £2,534
G £2,924
H £3,509

What to do if you suspect your new home is incorrectly valued

A homeowner can challenge the council tax band after moving in. Between April 2016 and April 2017, 40 council tax challenges were made, of which 10 saw a reduction. Contact the VOA for more information on how to challenge your tax band:

Valuation Office Agency
Redgrave Court
Merton Road
Liverpool
L20 7HS
Merseyside

Stamp Duty on Skelmersdale properties

Obtaining and completing the SDLT1 return from HMRC is difficult but not impossible for a typical property buyer. Usually, however, the form is completed by the conveyancing solicitor to avoid penalties or delays.

If the purchase price of the home you intend to buy is over the £125k threshold, you must pay Stamp Duty Land Tax.

Quittance ensure that the required SDLT1 form is completed accurately and without delay.

See examples for local properties:

  Average sale price (2017) SDLT
Average price £171,699 £933.98
Average price (detached) £288,697 £4,434.85
Average new build £256,371 £2,818.55

Stamp duty relief for first-time buyers in Skelmersdale

In 2017, it was announced that first-time buyers would be exempt from paying stamp duty on residential properties below £300k. Since 1st April 2016, buyers of second homes are subject to a higher SDLT rate of 3%, even if the home is not rented out. Following the example above, if a homeowner bought a second home in Skelmersdale for the average price of £171,699 the SDLT would be £8,584.95.

Skelmersdale conveyancing solicitors will confirm their client pays the right amount.

Buying a flat? Leasehold conveyancing in Skelmersdale

New build site

The drawbacks associated with owning a leasehold property should be a source of anxiety for leasehold home buyers. Numerous legal complications could be lying in wait for the unsuspecting buyer, such as:

  • unreasonable lease extension premiums
  • doubling ground rents
  • unpaid service charges by the existing leaseholder
Severe consequences can result from a solicitor's failure to advise you correctly regarding your planned leasehold purchase.

A expert conveyancing solicitor in Skelmersdale will address aspects of leasehold, including dealing with freeholders and managing agents, sometimes ancient and arcane lease documents and the implications of the remaining length of the lease.

Our 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 Skelmersdale?

House being built

The average value of Skelmersdale new build properties is £256,371, according to data compiled by the Land Registry. 16 brand new homes were purchased in Skelmersdale last year.

Purchasing a new build home can be more involved than any other type of conveyancing. To avoid potential problems a Skelmersdale conveyancing solicitor must be conscious of Skelmersdale-specific considerations and will need to report to clients on a number of issues, e.g. investigating developer incentives and ensuring new estate roads are adopted.

Our conveyancing team are experts in helping the buyer get the best possible purchase terms and working to developer exchange timeframes.

Lancashire Conservation areas

Whether you are a fan of Georgian, Edwardian or even Brutalist architecture, moving to a conservation area can ensure that the neighbourhood is protected from noticeable change. However, conservation area building controls will affect your residential property.

These constraints may include restrictions affecting frontal additions to the property such as a porch, general restrictions governing non-uniform additions or modifications or restrictions on extensions normally 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 previous owner carried out the alterations.

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

Conveyancing - Selling a property in Skelmersdale

The conveyancing process on a property sale usually requires less work than when purchasing. With a property purchase, the burden is on the buyer to determine whether the title of the property is legally sound.

In contrast, for a sale, conveyancing solicitors in Skelmersdale acting for the vendor only need to answer the purchaser's enquiries.

What can you do to help your sale go through?

A home will often come with a broad spectrum of possible complications (e.g. being in an area threatened by local development or previous or historic subsidence) that can threaten a transaction.

It is usually a good idea for vendors to handle these issues without delay.

Further reading:

Read more conveyancing advice for sellers.

Leasehold

Conveyancing for a leasehold property is quite a lot more protracted than for a freehold property.

Skelmersdale conveyancing solicitors must usually carry out further legal work, which could include requesting an up-to-date service charge statement, through to a common parts fire risk assessment.

It is recommended that you contact a property lawyer with leasehold experience as soon as possible to ensure the legal technicalities are handled correctly.

What if Quittance conveyancers are acting for the other side?

SRA regulations ban the same solicitor from working on behalf of both sides in a property sale and purchase. However, a CLC-regulated conveyancer, can act for both parties.

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

Local Skelmersdale conveyancing solicitor directory

  • Brighouse Wolff, Whelmar House, Southway, Skelmersdale, Lancashire, WN8 6NX

Conveyancing - Remortgaging a property in Skelmersdale

Saving money on a better rate is usually the main reason why homeowners opt to remortgage. There are other reasons, including fixing the mortgage on a new discounted rate, or releasing capital.

An efficient conveyancing solicitor in Skelmersdale can reduce the remortgage processing time, perhaps saving you from a payment or two at your old rate. With the base rate set at 0.5% (May 2018) and future interest rate changes hard to predict, fast conveyancing can play a key role in securing the rate you want.

It is vital that the property lawyer undertaking the legal work can represent your new lender. Our conveyancers are on the panel for all major UK lenders, so whether you are switching to a fixed-rate mortgage with the NatWest or to a variable-rate mortgage with the Dudley Building Society, 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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