Updated: October 12, 2018

Worcester conveyancing solicitor fees and costs

No Move, No Fee conveyancing in Worcester

Conveyancing solicitor fees are paid conveyancing solicitors in Worcester for the legal work for a home sale or purchase.

How are Worcester conveyancing fees calculated?

Our conveyancers work on a fixed No Sale, No Fee basis with no unexpected, additional costs, unlike some other conveyancing solicitors in Worcester who carry out the legal work on an hourly-rate basis. Your conveyancing quote sets out all fees and other costs you will be charged when your sale or purchase goes through.

Are there any other costs?

You will need to budget for 'disbursements', on top of the conveyancing fees.

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 or indemnity insurance.

See: Complete list of conveyancing fees and disbursements

How much will the total Worcester solicitor conveyancing fees be?

While conveyancing fees in Worcester will be the same as anywhere else in the country, there can be variation in the disbursements required. As examples, council search fees will vary and specific extra searches, such as a Coal Authority search, may be necessary.

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

Quittance's conveyancing fees were considerably cheaper than the Estate Agent's recommended solicitor's fees

Conveyancing - Buying a property in Worcester

The cathedral city of Worcester stands on the River Severn, was the site of the final battle of the English Civil War, in 1651, home to composer Edward Elgar and gave the world Lea & Perrins Worcestershire Sauce.

Named as one of the happiest places to live in several occasions, Worcester is one of the most attractive cities in the UK and popular with people of all ages. Its central location in beautiful countryside makes it a good base for commuters to Birmingham or Bristol. There is a wide range of property available, both in the centre and the surrounding villages, from period houses to modern flat conversions. A recent surge in new build homes has boosted market prices.

Conveyancing for home buyers

Caveat emptor (buyer beware), was a key part of property law in England and Wales. This principle no longer applies, however, it is still the duty of a buyer's solicitor to investigate their intended purchase.

The conveyancing solicitor in Worcester will give advice after making their enquiries, offer practical solutions and ensure the title is transferred to the new owner.

This article considers the aspects of the legal process for conveyancing solicitors in Worcester where specialist conveyancing skills may be required.

Your Worcester conveyancing solicitor must be lender-approved

Homebuyers have many mortgage providers available, from a less common lender like the Chelsea Building Society, to a major lender such as Sainsbury's Bank. Before you appoint a Worcester conveyancing solicitor, whoever you choose, you must confirm that they are approved by your lender.

Your conveyancer may be unable to act for your lender, because some banks and building societies are only prepared to work with a restricted panel of legal practices.

Under these circumstances, the lender will need a different firm to complete the legal work, and you will be expected to pay this substitute lawyer's costs. This can push back the completion date of the purchase.

Your purchase can be seriously delayed if you fail to check your property lawyer's lender panel status.

Our conveyancing solicitors are approved to act for all lenders.

Property Searches (Worcestershire County Council)

Property searches (sometimes referred to as 'conveyancing searches') are enquiries made of various authorities by Worcester conveyancing solicitors to identify issues affecting the property being purchased.

Searches are primarily carried out to satisfy lender requirements, and include the local authority (LA) search, environmental search, drainage & water search and chancel repair liability.

More specialised searches, such as a highways authority search or a mining search, may also be advised following the initial searches.

The estimated turnaround time for Residential property searches from Worcestershire County Council is 6 weeks. Your lawyer could instead use faster personal searches.

Planning documents

Official Entries (or 'office copies') will also be applied for from HM Land Registry by the homebuyer's conveyancing solicitor. This will help to identify potential planning issues. Examples of these include discrepancies with the filed plan or that a restrictive covenant has been breached.

Worcestershire County Council Council Tax

The amount of council tax a homeowner in Worcester will pay to Worcestershire County Council will depend on the property's value and the number of residents. The occupier of a property in Band -, for example, would owe annual council tax of -.

Conveyancing solicitors in Worcester will inform the purchaser of the home's tax band once they have the Local Authority search results.

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 -.

Other discounts and exemptions may also apply, e.g. if the property is uninhabited (for the first 60 days) or where an occupation is prohibited by law such as a compulsory purchase order. Homes constructed after 1991 are assessed and allocated a band by the Valuation Office Agency (VOA).

-

Could you be overpaying?

A property owner can also apply for their property to be reassessed, but the band could be revised up as well as down. To challenge your banding contact:

Valuation Office Agency
Block A Government Buildings
Whittington Rd
Worcester
WR5 2LB
Worcestershire

Stamp Duty on Worcester 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 and because there may be penalties for underpayment.

If you are buying a residential property in England,Wales or Northern Ireland then Stamp Duty Land Tax is payable on properties over £125k. In Scotland, the threshold is £145k.

Quittance Conveyancing's case management system ensures that the complicated SDLT1 form is filed online to reduce delays and to avoid late-filing penalties.

See examples for typical Worcester properties:

  Average sale price (2017) Stamp Duty Land Tax
Average price £212,676 £1,753.52
Average price (detached) £311,048 £5,552.40
Average new build £220,428 £1,908.56

Stamp duty relief for first-time buyers in Worcester

Since Nov 2017, first-time buyers only need to pay stamp duty on properties valued over £300,000. Since 1st April 2016, buyers of second homes are subject to a 3% stamp duty surcharge, even if the property is not rented out. E.g. if a second property was bought for £212,676 then the stamp duty including the surcharge would be £10,633.80. .

Conveyancing solicitors in Worcester should ensure an accurate calculation is made.

Buying a flat? Leasehold conveyancing in Worcester

New build site

The possible drawbacks of buying a leasehold property in England or Wales are under increasing media scrutiny. Ground rent multipliers, excessive freehold premiums and reversionary interests are but a few of the many potential difficulties awaiting the unsuspecting purchaser.

Erroneous leasehold advice, from an inexperienced conveyancing solicitor, can have costly, long-term consequences.

If you intend to purchase a house or flat with a lease, a experienced conveyancing solicitor in Worcester will address aspects of leasehold, including :

  • reviewing the lease itself (many leases are decades old)
  • service charges, ground rents and buildings insurance arrangements
  • managing agent practices
  • residents? management company
  • proceedings threatened against the freeholder under Part 2 of the Commonhold and Leasehold Reform Act 2002

Our team of leasehold conveyancing solicitors will ensure that you are fully-informed regarding your decision to buy a leasehold property.

Buying a 'New Build' property in Worcester?

New build site

Based on Her Majesty's Land Registry data, the average cost of Worcester new build properties is £206,482. 9 brand new properties have been bought in Worcester in 2018 so far.

A new-build conveyancing solicitor in Worcester will need to be familiar with Worcester-specific issues and new build's additional complexities, including confirming right of way over drains and sewers, liaising with the builder's onsite sales team and checking new build warranties with warranty providers, including NHBC, Zurich Municipal and Checkmate.

Our specialist team of new build conveyancers deliver an impartial view of the legal title of the house or apartment, and in particular concerns like problematic leasehold terms and an assessment of other risks, such as regional infrastructure development.

Worcestershire Conservation areas

If you are buying a house in one of Worcester's conservation areas, the property must not breach any conservation area constraints. Referred to as Article 4 directions, these conditions may include:

  • A prohibition on the removal of chimneys
  • Restrictions on hard standings at the front of the property
  • A prohibition on side or two-storey extensions

The local authority can order any non-compliant alterations to a property to be changed or removed, such as removing wall render or paint.

Worcester conservation areas include St John's, Trotshill and Shrubbery Avenue. Your conveyancing solicitor will address whether your planned purchase is located one of Worcester's conservation areas.

Conveyancing - Selling a property in Worcester

The legal work involved in a sale of a house or flat usually requires less work than when buying. The buyer conducts detailed due diligence into the property and its legal title. Conveyancing solicitors in Worcester acting for the seller, however, effectively just answers the purchaser's enquiries.

What could go wrong?

A property can face many problems (e.g. missing planning permission or where the property differs from the title plan) that can prolong a sale.

In most cases, it is recommended for vendors to tackle any such problems head on.

Useful reading:

Read more helpful advice for sellers here.

Selling a leasehold property

Conveyancing for a leasehold flat or house is significantly more complicated in comparison with a freehold house.

Leasehold complexity involves additional tasks on the part of conveyancing solicitors in Worcester, which could include obtaining all relevant freeholder information or a copy of the building's asbestos survey (if required).

A seller should plan to instruct a conveyancer as soon as possible to help mitigate (often inevitable) leasehold delays.

What if Quittance is acting for the other side?

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

If you are buying or selling a house or flat in Worcester, and a Quittance solicitor is acting for the other side, you could contact a property solicitor firm in Worcester to carry out your legal work.

Local Worcester conveyancing solicitor directory

  • Parkinson Wright LLP, Haswell House, St. Nicholas Street, Worcester, Worcestershire, WR1 1UN
  • Thomas Guise Limited, Marmion House, Copenhagen Street, Worcester, Worcestershire, WR1 2HB
  • Abc Worcester Limited, Chilton House, 37 Foregate Street, Worcester, Worcestershire, WR1 1EE
  • HallmarkHulme LLP, 3 4-5 Sansome Place, Worcester, Worcestershire, WR1 1UQ
  • Harrison Clark (Worcester) LLP, 5 Deansway, Worcester, Worcestershire, WR1 2JG

Conveyancing - Remortgaging a property in Worcester

Although people consider remortgaging for a range of reasons, homeowners generally remortgage to secure a better rate of interest.

You would typically benefit from a lower rate faster with a more efficient conveyancing solicitor in Worcester, reducing the time the conveyancing takes to complete. With the base rate set at 0.5% (May 2018), fast conveyancing can be a critical factor in securing the rate you want.

To make sure that the lender's investment is secured, the property lawyer handling your remortgage will act for 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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