Updated: October 12, 2018

Woolwich conveyancing solicitor fees

No Move, No Fee conveyancing in Woolwich

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

Do Woolwich conveyancing solicitors work on a fixed fee basis?

Quittance's conveyancing solicitors work on fixed legal fees (known as 'No Sale, No Fee' or 'No Move, No Fee') with no hidden costs, unlike some other conveyancing solicitors in Woolwich who carry out the legal work on an hourly rate. Your quote will set out what you will be charged when your sale or purchase goes through.

Are there any other costs?

On top of the conveyancing fees you will also have to cover any 'disbursements'.

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 Stamp Duty Land Tax or identity verification checks.

See: Complete list of conveyancing fees and disbursements

How much will the total Woolwich solicitor conveyancing fees be?

Woolwich conveyancing solicitor fees will not vary. However, there may be some variation in certain disbursements. As examples, specific extra searches, e.g. utilities searches, may be necessary and council search fees will vary.

For a standard home sale or purchase, what we quote is the fee you pay. There are no hidden costs or surprises to be paid with Quittance Conveyancing. To calculate your conveyancing fees, try our conveyancing fees quote calculator: Click here

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

Conveyancing - Buying a property in Woolwich

Originally a town in Kent, but part of the London metropolitan area since the 19th century, Woolwich now forms part of the Royal Borough of Greenwich. For centuries Woolwich has been an important military, dockyard and industrial centre and it is expected to flourish as one of the London plan's 'opportunity areas', especially once its new Crossrail service commences in December 2018.

Regeneration started about a decade ago and included a new town centre square futuristic flats. This continues with a £1.2bn redevelopment of the Woolwich Arsenal site, with around 5,000 new homes being created in converted heritage buildings and new riverside towers, plus several other new housing developments in this up and coming area.

Conveyancing for buyers

As a key part of the legal work for a property purchase, a conveyancing solicitor in Woolwich will carry out due diligence on the legal ownership rights or 'title' of the property and feed the results of their enquiries back to the buyer.

The property lawyer will offer suggestions and advice once their enquiries are complete, help with resolving any problems and ensure that the change of ownership is registered at the Land Registry.

The following section examines the kinds of residential property that may be of interest to buyers looking for conveyancing solicitors in Woolwich.

Your Woolwich conveyancing solicitor must be lender-approved

Whether you are obtaining a mortgage from Santander, Scottish Widows or any other lender, before instructing a Woolwich conveyancing solicitor it is critical that you make sure that they are approved by your chosen lender.

Your solicitor may be unable to act for your chosen lender, because some lenders are only prepared to work with a select group (often referred to as a 'panel') of firms.

Under these circumstances, the lender will likely require a second firm to act in their interests, and you will be expected to pay this substitute lawyer's costs. Handling paperwork and correspondence with this additional party can delay the process.

Your property transaction could be put at risk by failing to check your property solicitor's lender panel status.

Quittance Conveyancing are approved to act for all banks and building societies.

Greenwich Borough Council searches and other searches

Property searches (sometimes referred to as 'conveyancing searches') are questions submitted to a number of authorities by Woolwich conveyancing solicitors to identify issues affecting your planned purchase.

Searches are primarily performed to satisfy mortgage conditions, usually including the local authority (LA) search, environmental search, drainage & water search and chancel repair liability.

You will be informed if your chosen lender insists on any further searches, such as a Crossrail search or a Forestry Commission search.

The London Borough of Greenwich has a usual turnaround time of 16 weeks for LA searches, so faster personal (as opposed to official) searches will be recommended.

Finding planning permissions

Official Entries will also be obtained from the Land Registry by your conveyancing solicitor. This will help to highlight any potential issues. Examples of these include limits on the development of the property or a difference between the agent's floorplan and the title plan.

London Borough of Greenwich Council Tax

The amount of council tax a homeowner in Woolwich will pay to London Borough of Greenwich will depend on the property's value and the number of residents. E.g. for an average Band C house in Woolwich, the amount of council tax would be £1,271 per year.

Woolwich conveyancing solicitors will inform a buyer of the property's band as soon as they are 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 £953.

Other discounts and exemptions may also apply, e.g. a 10% discount for second homes (although this may change as the government has second home ownership in its sights) or if an occupier is a student nurse. A new property is assessed by the Valuation Office Agency and allocated a council tax banding.

Band London Borough of Greenwich Tax (2018)
A £953
B £1,112
C £1,271
D £1,429
E £1,747
F £2,065
G £2,382
H £2,859

Can you challenge the council tax bracket?

It is possible to challenge the council tax band after moving in. Between April 2016 and April 2017, 40 council tax challenges were made. 20 resulted in a reduction. To appeal contact:

Valuation Office Agency
10th Floor
Crown House
Linton Rd
Barking
IG11 8HJ
Essex

Stamp Duty on Woolwich properties

The current SDLT threshold is £125k in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. Obtaining and completing the SDLT1 return from HMRC is difficult but not impossible for a typical purchaser. Usually, however, the form is completed by the conveyancing solicitor to avoid penalties or delays.

Quittance ensure that the hard to understand SDLT1 form is completed accurately and without delay.

See table below for SDLT examples for properties in London:

  Average selling price (February 2018) SDLT
Average price £839,875 £31,993.75
Average price (detached) £1,973,730 £150,597.60
Average new build £64,786 £0.00
Higher rates of SDLT apply to buyers of second property in the form of an SDLT surcharge of 3%. So if a second home was bought for £839,875 then the SDLT total will be £67,190.00.

Stamp duty relief for first-time buyers in Woolwich

Since Nov 2017, first-time buyers only need to pay stamp duty on residential properties valued over £300k.

Conveyancing solicitors in Woolwich should ensure the right tax is paid.

Buying a flat? Leasehold conveyancing in Woolwich

New build site

The drawbacks associated with purchasing a leasehold property in the UK are frequently reported in the newspapers. The many potential complications lying in wait for an uninformed purchaser can include unfair developer practices and ground rent multipliers.

Erroneous leasehold advice, from a conveyancing solicitor with little specialist experience, could have costly, long-term consequences.

If you intend to purchase a house or flat with a lease, a experienced conveyancing solicitor in Woolwich will consider potential leasehold issues, e.g. unexpired lease terms, service charges and whether they have been collected and understanding regional and era-specific nuances of leases.

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

Buying a 'New Build' property in Woolwich?

Building site

Based on local data sourced by HMLR, 450 new build homes have been bought in Woolwich in 2018 so far. The average sale price of new build properties in Woolwich is £449,784.

A new-build conveyancing solicitor in Woolwich must be familiar with local considerations and new build-specific issues, including confirming rights to use pipes and cables (e.g. phone, data, fibre, electricity) and ensuring that new build mortgage conditions are met.

Our expert new build team provide an expert appraisal of the property's legal status, and in particular issues ranging from the home's subsequent marketability to 'doubling' ground rent and service charges (where applicable).

Conservation areas

Moving into a conservation area can ensure that the street's unique character is protected. However, conservation area building controls will affect your home.

These restrictions could include:

  • Restrictions on the removal of front boundary walls, railings or fences
  • Restrictions on the addition of flues and soil vent pipes
  • Limits on the installation of VELUX windows

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.

Quittance's conveyancing solicitors will address whether the home you plan to buy is located in a conservation area in Woolwich.

Conveyancing - Selling a property in Woolwich

The legal side of a sale of a house or flat is much simpler than for a purchase. When buying, the onus is on the buyer to discover whether the title of the property does not have any legal issues.

In contrast, for a sale, conveyancing solicitors in Woolwich acting for the vendor need only answer enquiries made on behalf of the buyer.

What could jeopardise your sale?

A house or flat can face a range of complex issues (such as not having appropriate warranties or parking issues or disputes) that can derail a transaction.

It is better not to hide from the issue in the hope that any issues won't be spotted - speak to an expert instead and deal with it as soon as you can.

Recommended reading:

Read more helpful advice for sellers here.

Leasehold flats

The conveyancing process for a leasehold flat (leasehold houses are uncommon) is quite a lot more technical than for a freehold house.

Conveyancing solicitors in Woolwich will also carry out additional work. This can involve obtaining an up-to-date service charge statement, through to details of the length of leases of other flats in the block.

You should instruct a lawyer as soon as an estate agent is chosen to reduce leasehold-related delays.

Can Quittance conveyancers act for both parties?

A CLC-regulated conveyancer can act for both the buyer and the seller. However, Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) rules restrict the same solicitor from working on behalf of both sides in a property sale.

You could contact a property solicitor firm in Woolwich to undertake your conveyancing, if a Quittance solicitor is acting for the other side.

Local Woolwich conveyancing solicitor directory

  • Atlantic Solicitors Ltd, Suite 206 Island Business Cent, 18-36 Wellington Street, Woolwich, Greenwich, London, SE18 6PF
  • Royal Borough of Greenwich, The Woolwich Centre, Wellington Street, London, SE18 6HQ
  • Toltops Solicitors, Suite 235 Block O, Island Business Centre, Woolwich, London Se18 6pf, London, London, SE18 6PF
  • H E Thomas & Co, 3 Thomas Street, Woolwich, London, SE18 6HL
  • A&C Solicitors, 2nd Floor, 7-9 Woolwich New Road, London, SE18 6EX

Conveyancing - Remortgaging a property in Woolwich

By far the most common reason people remortgage is to get a better interest rate. There are also any number of other reasons to switch lenders or mortgage deals, including the current mortgage deal coming to an end, or wanting to borrow more.

Homeowners can appreciate the benefits of a better rate sooner with a more proactive conveyancing solicitor in Woolwich. They will work to reduce the processing time of the conveyancing. 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.

The property lawyer will act for both you and your new bank or building society to certify the lender's capital is protected.

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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