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Buying or selling a property is likely to be the single biggest financial transaction that you are ever likely to carry out.The basic processes are the same, but in every case, you will come across problems that have to be solved. You are about to engage in a highly complex legal and financial transaction.

It is really important that you have a good idea of the total cost before you start.There is nothing more frustrating than buying a service that appears to be value for money and then finding that you have to pay for other items that you didn’t expect.We cannot explain every possibility, and whilst we have provided you with a quotation of definitive costs which are payable in all transactions, there may be occasions when additional work needs to be carried out on your behalf which may only become apparent as your matter progresses.We have listed below the most common incidences when additional fees may be incurred (please note all costs are subject to VAT).The rates are discretionary as we are unable to say at the outset how complex and therefore how time consuming any particular incidence may be, but any additional fees will be agreed with you beforehand.Please do read this Guide carefully as it is designed to help you with a complex transaction and we do not wish for there to be any unpleasant surprises in relation to our fees as we approach a completion date.

Land Registry Fees


If the title to the property is being registered for the first time, i.e. it is a new build property or a property with an unregistered title, then we will be obliged to submit a paper application to the Land Registry to register the property for the first time. Please note that in these instances, the Land Registry will charge double their usual fee and our quotation would have to be revised accordingly.



Dealing with an Unregistered Title

£50.00 - £150.00

Most property and land in England and Wales is now registered at a central Land Registry. Occasionally, if a property has been in one family’s ownership for many years, title may not be registered and it will be necessary for us to examine sets of old title deeds.



Dealing with a Sale or Purchase of Part of a Title

£300

This usually entails completion within 28 days and collating information ourselves from various sources which would normally be provided by the Sellers or their solicitors. We also need to check and advise upon any conditions of sale such as restrictions to selling within a certain time period.

Dealing with Repossessed Property £150.00
This usually entails completion within 28 days and collating information ourselves from various sources which would normally be provided by the Sellers or their solicitors. We also need to check and advise upon any conditions of sale such as restrictions to selling within a certain time period.



Dealing with a New Build Property

£150.00 - £350

There is much additional work for us to carry out when dealing with a new or recently built property. We are obliged to check planning and building regulation consents, road and sewer adoption agreements, planning obligation agreements and building warranties.



Dealing with Multiple Titles

£50.00 - £125.00

If the property being sold or purchased includes more than one title, further work needs to be carried out to check the additional titles involved. For example, we would need to see whether the additional titles are subject to any further mortgages or additional rights of way.



Upgrading a Title

£50.00

Sometimes it is possible to make an application to the Land registry to upgrade the class of title you are acquiring, for example from good to absolute leasehold or from possessory to good title.



Dealing with a Leasehold Property

£60.00 - £300.00

Generally dealing with a Leasehold Property involves a great deal more work on our behalf than dealing with a freehold title as we will need to check the terms and conditions of the lease and raise additional enquiries with the Landlord and Management Company (if any), or their Agents. Normally speaking dealing with a leasehold house involves less additional work than buying or selling a leasehold apartment. We may also be obliged to check the payment of ground rent, insurance premiums and service charges, and if necessary calculate apportionments of these charges to be paid on completion of your transaction. If you are selling a leasehold apartment it is likely that we will have to obtain a ‘Management Pack’ or a bundle of information from the freeholder and/or their managing agents which are typically charged at between £100.00 and £300.00. Time can often be saved by you paying the required fees direct to the management company.



Ground Landlord Registration Fee for Leasehold Properties

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It is usually a condition of a lease that when a property changes hands, the new owner, via their legal representative, is obliged to provide their details to the Landlord. The Landlord or agents or lawyers acting on their behalf will usually charge an administration fee for dealing with this notice. Sometimes it is a requirement that we serve the relevant notices on more than one party who may each charge a fee. We do not know this charge until we have seen the lease and/or communicated with the landlord and/or managing agents. The total cost is usually between £100.00 and £200.00 but can occasionally be more than £300.00 so you need to budget accordingly. Some unscrupulous companies will charge to receipt a notice of Transfer and a notice of Charge (essentially a letter from us advising the property has been sold to a new owner who has purchased with the aid of a mortgage). We believe there will shortly be legislation introduced to cap fees that can be charged.

Sometimes, but not often, Management Companies are formed on freehold developments, where, for example, there are areas used in common which require regular maintenance such as landscaped gardens. Administration fees may be charged by them to obtain required information, and often involves us in having to carry out additional work too, for which we reserve the right to charge.



Dealing with a Shared Ownership Lease

£150.00 - £350.00

Owning a share of a property in common with a Housing Association is a very specialist area of the law and involves us dealing with additional parties throughout the transaction.



Lease Extensions/Variations

This is a complex area of law and matters such as these will usually need to be referred to specialists within the firm. Costs charged will be calculated on an individually assessed basis.



Acting on Behalf of a Company

£200.00 - £500.00

In addition to having identify and ID check each of the beneficial owners and majority shareholders, we need to check the Memorandum and Articles of Association, if applicable check existing charges and floating charges, deal with letters of non-crystallisation and negative pledges and register transactions where appropriate at companies house in addition to dealing with any requirements of specialist lenders.



Dealing with Tenanted Properties

£75.00 - £250.00

If we need to approve an existing Tenancy Agreement and ensure all future rents are paid to the proper person and check out a bond deposit scheme, then additional work will be involved. Similarly, if we need to ensure proper notices have been served and vacant possession is to be given, additional fees will be incurred.



Help to Buy Schemes

£50.00 - £350.00

The Government have launched a number of initiatives to encourage home ownership. These range from a simple Help to Buy ISA for first time buyers to more complex shared ownership schemes on new build properties, where second charges need to be registered.



Preparation of a Declaration of Trust

£75.00 - £250.00

Legal ownership of title may not always accurately reflect all interests in the property. Sometimes joint owners wish us to set out the exact terms on which they share the property. On these occasions we are often asked to prepare a Trust Deed. These can often be quite basic, but occasionally very detailed.



Dealing with an Adult Occupier

£50.00 - £100.00

If someone is residing at the property over the age of 17 and isn’t an owner of the property, it will be necessary for the person to sign documentation to confirm that should the property be repossessed, the adult occupier will vacate the property.



Lender Administration Charge

£40.00

There are some lenders, such as Metro Bank, Virgin Money, HSBC etc. who have chosen to manage their panel solicitors through a third party. In these instances, we are obliged to update information through an online portal and pay an administration fee on a case by case basis. If you are obtaining mortgage finance with such a lender, this incurs additional work for us and some duplication as well as the payment of their fees.



Lawyer Checker

£12.00

With the ever increasing threat of sophisticated cybercrime, it is sometimes necessary for us to check the credentials and bank account details of solicitors acting on behalf of Sellers, particularly those firms who we have not dealt with before, or new firms.



Arranging/Dealing with Indemnity Insurance Issues

£30.00 - £150.00

Title defects are not uncommon. They can range from a lack of access to the property, or a breach of a covenant, to an inability to produce a Building Control Completion Certificate for works carried out to a property. These defects can often be dealt with expeditiously by providing insurance but this does involve us in carrying out additional work to that which we have quoted for.



Statutory Declaration or Statement of Truth for Title rectification

£75.00 - £150.00

It may sometimes be necessary to provide third parties with statements of truth as to how the property has been used over a period of time. For example, where someone has used a piece of land which is not included within their title.




Removal of a Caution/Restriction at HM Land Registry

£75.00 - £250.00

Sometimes third parties will have registered interests in a property or interests in the proceeds of any sale of a property against a set of title deeds. These will need to be removed in some way when a property changes ownership.



Third Party Deposits

£100.00

If someone other than the Buyer is providing monies towards the purchase price then we will be required to carry out additional money laundering checks, obtain written evidence as to their potential interest in the property and liaise with any mortgage lender.



Participating in a Contract race

£150.00

If there are two or more interested parties in buying a property and a contract pack has been issued to both parties on the basis it is ‘first come first served’ then time becomes of the essence and you will require us to give the highest priority to the transaction.



Redeeming Charges/Loans

£35.00 - £70.00

If we are obliged to pay off loans or debts which are in some way secured against the property additional fees will usually be incurred.



Preparation of a Deed of Covenant

£50.00 - £150.00

This may be relevant if part of a property extends under or over an adjoining property and it is necessary for the owners of both properties to enter into a Mutual Deed of Covenant to ensure the properties benefit from rights of mutual support and protection. It may also be a requirement in title deeds, particularly with modern flats, that a new owner enters into a direct covenant with the Landlord to abide by the terms and conditions of the lease.



Dealing with an Auction Property

£100.00 - £250.00

If we are acting in the sale of an auction property then this will usually involve us attending the auction on your behalf. Whether selling or buying the transaction will be expected to comply with the conditions in the auction contract. When buying a property using the ‘Modern Method of Auction’ you should take note additional fees will be charged for advice given on any reservation agreements or conditions of sale that you enter into and you should also take note that any reservation fees paid by you which do not specifically form part of the purchase monies will need to be taken into account in the calculation of the amount of stamp duty payable.



Retrospective Consent

£50.00
Where changes to a property have been made in contravention of a covenant in the legal title, it is sometimes possible to obtain retrospective consent.
Solar Panels
The law relating to solar panels can be complicated as we need to check various regulations and may involve us in getting further consents. The additional fee which may be payable will depend entirely upon individual circumstances.
Delayed Completion
In very rare circumstances completion may be delayed beyond the completion date. This may then involve our having to serve a notice to complete and provide you with litigation advice on the consequences of a party being in breach of contract and the options available for rectifying the breach or for obtaining damages. This is above and beyond the remit of the conveyancing instructions and may well involve a member of our litigation team. We would be entitled to charge in such circumstances for the advice given and subsequent action taken.
Retention
There are occasions when it may be prudent for some of the purchase/sale monies to be retained, for example, until up to date service charge accounts are available on a leasehold flat, or a road adoption agreement is available on a new build property. In these cases we reserve the right to charge for any additional work involved depending upon the length of time the monies are retained and the additional enquiries we have to make before attending to the release of the funds.