Updated: October 12, 2018

Whittlesey conveyancing solicitor fees and costs

No Move, No Fee conveyancing in Whittlesey

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

Do Whittlesey conveyancing solicitors work on a fixed fee basis?

Some conveyancing solicitors in Whittlesey work on an hourly rate, whereas others work on a fixed fee (or 'No Move, No Fee'). Quittance's conveyancing solicitors work on a No Sale, No Fee basis, with no hidden costs. Your quote explains all fees and other costs you will be charged when your sale or purchase completes.

Are there any other costs in addition to conveyancing fees?

In addition to the solicitor's conveyancing fees you will also have to pay for 'disbursements'.

Disbursements are the third-party costs that your conveyancer will pass on to you at the end of the conveyancing process, such as Stamp Duty Land Tax or managing agent fees.

See: Complete list of conveyancing fees and disbursements

How much will the total Whittlesey solicitor conveyancing fees be?

Although conveyancing fees in Whittlesey will usually match prices elsewhere in the UK, the disbursements required can vary. For example, specific extra searches, such as a mining search, may be necessary and council search fees will vary.

For a standard conveyancing transaction, the fees we quote are the fees you pay. With Quittance Conveyancing, 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 delivered an excellent service at the lowest conveyancing fees we could find

Conveyancing - Buying a property in Whittlesey

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, it is still the duty of a buyer's solicitor to carry out due diligence on a planned purchase.

The conveyancing solicitor in Whittlesey will offer suggestions and advice following their enquiries, deal with any legal problems and register the new owner's title at the Land Registry.

This section provides advice to assist buyers who need conveyancing solicitors in Whittlesey.

Your Whittlesey conveyancing solicitor must be lender-approved

Whether your mortgage is with a large lender like the Co-operative Bank or a less common lender such as Atom Bank, before choosing a Whittlesey conveyancing solicitor it is vital that you check that they can act in the interests of your mortgage lender.

Your conveyancer may not be able to carry out the legal work on behalf of your mortgage lender, because some banks and building societies are only prepared to work with a selected list (known as a 'lender panel') of legal firms.

In this case, the lender will need a different law firm to complete the legal work, and you will usually need to pay this alternative solicitor's fees. Resulting delays can jeopardise the whole purchase.

Major delays can result from failing to check your conveyancing lawyer's lender panel status.

Our solicitors can act on behalf of all lenders.

Searches (Fenland District Council)

Searches are questions submitted to a number of authorities by Whittlesey conveyancing solicitors to identify issues affecting the home you want to buy.

Searches are primarily performed to meet lender requirements. These searches include the local authority (LA) search, environmental search, drainage & water search and chancel repair liability.

Additional searches, such as a highways authority search or a commons registration search, may also be referred to in the initial search results.

The average lead time for LA searches obtained from Fenland District Council is 13 weeks, so quicker regulated searches will be advisable.

Ensuring planning permission is in place

Official Entries will also be sourced from HMLR by the conveyancing solicitor acting for the purchaser. This will help to identify any issues. These issues could include outbuildings missing from the title plan or limits on the development of the property.

Fenland District Council Council Tax

The council tax paid by a homeowner is based on various factors that include the size of the property and the value of the property. For example, a property in the Fenland District Council area in Valuation Band E would pay £2,230 per annum.

Conveyancing solicitors in Whittlesey 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 £1,673.

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 occupation is prohibited by law such as a compulsory purchase order.

Band Fenland District Council Tax (2018)
A £1,216
B £1,419
C £1,622
D £1,825
E £2,230
F £2,636
G £3,041
H £3,649

Are you paying more than you should?

It is possible to challenge the council tax band after moving in. Between April 2016 and April 2017, 20 council tax challenges were made. 10 resulted in a reduction. Contact the VOA for more information on how to challenge your tax band:

Valuation Office Agency
3rd Floor
Churchgate
New Rd
Peterborough
PE1 1TT
Cambridgeshire

Stamp Duty on Whittlesey properties

The normal process is for the conveyancing solicitor to complete the SDLT administration. Buyers can complete the SDLT1 themselves but it is not recommended due to the complexity of the form.

If the purchase price of the house you intend to buy is over the £125,000 threshold, you must pay Stamp Duty Land Tax.

HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) objections are avoided using the latest legal case management system.

See SDLT examples for homes in Cambridgeshire:

  Average selling price (2018 to date) Stamp Duty
Average price £320,374 £6,018.70
Average price (detached) £410,126 £10,506.30
Average new build £305,601 £5,280.05

Stamp duty relief for first-time buyers in Whittlesey

As from 11/17, first-time buyers will not have to pay any stamp duty if the purchase price is below £300k. If you are buying a second home for more than £40,000 then you will have to pay a 3% stamp duty surcharge. E.g. if a second home was bought for £320,374 then the SDLT including the surcharge would be £25,629.92. .

Whittlesey conveyancing solicitors should ensure their client pays the correct amount.

Buying a flat? Leasehold conveyancing in Whittlesey

New build site

Buying a leasehold house or flat is not as simple as buying a freehold property. Ground rent multipliers, onerous clauses in the lease and reversionary interests are but a few of the many potential difficulties awaiting an uninformed purchaser.

Erroneous leasehold advice, from an inexperienced conveyancing solicitor, could lead to serious consequences.

A good conveyancing solicitor in Whittlesey will consider possible leasehold issues, including :

  • reviewing the lease itself
  • dealing with landlords
  • service charges for relevant date periods
  • share of freehold complexity

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

Buying a 'New Build' property in Whittlesey?

House under construction

Based on local data sourced by the Land Registry, 46 new build homes have been bought in Whittlesey in 2018 so far. The average price for new build homes in Whittlesey is £305,601.

A new-build conveyancing solicitor in Whittlesey needs to be conscious of both local Whittlesey issues as well as the extra complexities associated with new build, e.g. handling reservation fees and negotiating new build contracts.

Our team of new build conveyancers deliver a specialist assessment of the legal title of the property, with a close eye on factors like problematic leasehold terms and excessive ground rent and service charges (where applicable).

Conservation areas in Cambridgeshire

If you are planning to buy a residential property in a conservation area in Whittlesey, the property will need to meet any conservation area building controls. These building controls, called Article 4 Directions, may include:

  • Limits on the use of non-traditional building materials
  • A ban on VELUX windows
  • Restrictions on outbuildings and extensions

The local authority can order any non-compliant alterations to a property to be changed or removed, such as knocking down a new modern-style extension.

The local planning authority (LPA) for Fenland has designated conservation area status on certain areas of Whittlesey. Your conveyancing solicitor will confirm whether the property you are buying is located in one of Whittlesey's conservation areas.

Conveyancing - Selling a property in Whittlesey

The legal process for a property sale is generally simpler than for a purchase. With a purchase, the obligation lies entirely with the buyer to satisfy themselves that the property's title is not legally defective.

With a sale, conveyancing solicitors in Whittlesey acting for the current owner only need to answer the buyer's solicitor's formal enquiries.

Factors that could delay or endanger your home sale

Common obstacles, like where the property differs from the title plan or missing planning regulations, can potentially protract a transaction.

Don't shy away from finding a solution, waiting to see if the problem is discovered - a better course of action will be to seek out professional help and tackle it ASAP.

Further reading:

Read more helpful advice for sellers here.

Sale conveyancing for a leasehold property

The conveyancing process for a leasehold flat or house is a great deal more technical compared to a freehold house.

The complexities of leasehold mean conveyancing solicitors in Whittlesey must carry out additional legal work, which could include sourcing all relevant freeholder information, through to details of the length of leases of other flats in the block.

Given the complexities of leasehold property, it is strongly advised that the seller instructs a leasehold-specialist lawyer as soon as the property is marketed, if not before,.

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

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

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

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Conveyancing - Remortgaging a property in Whittlesey

Although there are many reasons to remortgage, people will usually remortgage to get a lower interest rate.

An efficient conveyancing solicitor in Whittlesey 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), fast conveyancing can be a contributing factor to getting on to the rate you want.

So that they can confirm that the mortgage provider's interests are protected, the property lawyer will represent both you and the mortgage provider.

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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