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Buying a new home is said to be the second most stressful event in your life. We’ll take this stress off your shoulders and provide a fast, efficient, knowledgeable service, keeping you fully informed every step of the way, and all at competitive rates. We have a fully computerised service and can repond quickly to queries and assist in resolving issues.
If you are buying a flat it will probably be a Leasehold. We will explain the terms of the lease and advise on the important matter of applying to extend your lease to maximise your investment.
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We also have experience of handling property developers and have developed our own draft leases and have comprehensive knowledge of the issues which arise in those transactions.
Shared Home Ownership
Despite the current economic climate there are a number ways where first time buyers can get onto the property ladder. We here outline the various schemes which are available.
Purchasing from a Housing Association or Developers
If you are a first time Buyer unable to afford the full price of a property you may be able to get help through an Equity Loan Scheme, Firstbuy or Homebuy Direct
1. Shared ownership
You can purchase as little as a 25% share of the property and pay the rest in full and subsidised rent. Usually, you can staircase up to buy further trenches of the property
2. Private share ownership schemes
It is worth shopping around. Developers are offering a variety of incentives to sell their stock. These include cash back for a deposit, giving you a loan to help with costs or paying your mortgage for a period of time. Contact developers direct.
We are happy to assist you with any of the above options.
Extending Your Lease
It is important to extend your lease to maximise your investments in your property. Provided that you have lived in the property for 2 years, you have a right under the Leasehold Reform Act to extend the original lease for a further 90 years at a peppercorn rent. You may be able to negotiate with your landlord outside the Act for a longer period. You will also need to instruct a Valuer but we can assist in the negotiations and draw up the necessary documents or deal with your mortgages requirements and register the new lease at the Land Registry.
Buying and Selling Freehold or Leasehold
Our fees cover all the work required to complete the purchase of your new home including dealing with the registration of your title at the Land Registry and dealing with the payment of Stamp Duty (Land Tax Stamp Duty) if the property is in England or Land Transaction Tax (Land Tax) if the property you wish to buy is in Wales.
Conveyancers fees and payments made on your behalf:
- Legal fees:
This will depend on your purchase price but as a rough guide our basic fee for any purchase up to £250,000 is £500 plus VAT at the applicable rate, currently 20%. For a property costing £500,000 we would charge in the region of £900 plus VAT and for a property costing over a £1,000,000 we would charge in the region of £2,000 plus VAT. Postage and petties, covering letters, emails and telephone calls are charged at an inclusive fee of £30 plus VAT. The quote will be based on a standard conveyancing transaction. Fees sometimes have to be increased if unexpected difficulties arise during the course of the transaction.
- Search fees:
Search fees cover searches made against the local authority for the area where the property is situated for any matters registered against the property such as financial charges and information about any planning permissions and building regulations consents. The local authorities vary in what they charge. We also carry out a search against the local water authority, an environmental search and chancel check search. These searches are subject to VAT and generally are in the region of £350 to £500. Prior to completion we carry out bankruptcy searches against the sellers names and your name and a priority search at the Land registry usually costing in the region of £12
- HM Land Registry fees:
These again depend on the value of the property but as an example the fees for registration of a property valued between £200,000 to £500,000 are £135 and for £500,000 to £1,000,000 are £270.
- Electronic money transfer fees:
Our Bank charges £15 plus VAT
Our Admin fee for with dealing with a bank transfer is £10 plus VAT
- Stamp Duty
This also depends on the purchase price of your property and whether you already own other property. You can calculate the amount you need to pay by using the HMRC website or if the property is located in Wales by using the Welsh Revenue Authority website.
Once you know the price of the house you are purchasing, we can of course advise you of the fees required to be paid.
The fee quoted will cover all expenses known at the time but sometime during the course of the conveyancing it is necessary to incur further fees such as an insurance premium for an indemnity policies for a defective titles or missing planning consents or building regulations certificates. We would of course advise if the costs are to be increased.
How long will my new house purchase take?
It is difficult to give a definite estimate as this depends on a number of factors particularly if you are in a chain with other people buying and selling and whether you yourself are applying for a mortgage. There are a number of matters which can delay completion particularly if you are buying from a developer or somebody from the chain is buying from a developer.
The purchase process:
There are two stages in the conveyancing process: the first one is investigating the title and carrying out enquiries and searches so that we have as much information as possible regarding the legal title to the property before exchange of contracts. It is only on exchange of contracts that it becomes a binding the agreement to buy and sell. On exchange of contracts we fix a completion date which is usually about two to four weeks after exchange of contracts. During that period, we would be finalising the documentation and reporting to your building society/bank for release of funds.
After completion we will be dealing with reporting to the Inland Revenue for payment of Stamp Duty and dealing with the registration of title at the Land Registry.
If you are buying a Leasehold title:
We charge £100 more than on a freehold purchase because of the amount of work involved. In addition to the payments being made on your behalf there would be further fees as follows:
- Notice of Transfer fee. This is the notice given to the Freeholders for the transfer of the Lease. The fee is variable and set out in the Lease. It can be as little as £25 but can go up to £200.
- Notice of Charge If the property is to be mortgaged a similar notice has to be given to the Freeholder. Again this fee is set out in the Lease.
- Deed of Covenant fee. This is a separate deed to the conveyancing deed wherein as a buyer you covenant with a Management Company or the Landlord’s Agent to observe the terms of the Lease and again this fee is set out in the Lease.
- Certificate of Compliance fee. This is sometimes required when there is a restriction on the title registered at the Land Registry. Again the fee is set by the terms of the Lease.
These fees vary and we can only give an accurate figure once we have sight of the documents relating to the property.
In addition to the purchase price you would be probably asked to pay a portion of the ground rent and service charge for the current quarter. Again, we can advise you of the ground rent and the apportionment of the service charge once we receive documentation from the seller’s solicitors.
Legal Fees. These depend on the price of the property and whether it is freehold or leasehold. As a guide where the property is registered at the Land Registry our fees on sale of a freehold for upto £250.000 would be £450 plus VAT at the applicable rate., currently 20%. For property between £250,000- £400,000 about £600 plus VAT and above £400,000 about £800 plus VAT increasing to over £1200 plus VAT for property over £1million
As noted above the sale fees stated are based on a standard transaction and fees can increase in similar circumstances to a purchase.
For leasehold properties we charge an additional £100 plus VAT because of the additional work.
Postage and petties covering letters, telephone calls and emails are charged at an inclusive fee of £30 plus VAT.
Land Registry fees. We obtain office copy entries of the registered title at a fee of £8. On leasehold sale we will also need to obtain copies of the freehold title and the lease.
Bank charges. As detailed above our bank charges £15 plus VAT and we charge an admin fee of £10 plus VAT for telegraphic transfers to redeem any mortgage and account to you for the proceeds of sale.
Landlords Fees. If you are selling a leasehold interest we will need to obtain a leasehold information pack from the freeholder containing information about the rent account, service charge account and budgets, major works and insurance. Landlords charge between £200-£400 plus VAT to provide this information.
How long will it take? This is difficult to estimate at the beginning and depends on whether you are buying on at the same time and the length of the chain which can only move at the pace of the slowest, but as a rough guide it takes between 4-6 weeks
Once we know the sale price we can give you a full estimate. Sometimes during the course of a sale unexpected problems arise and we may have to revise our estimate but we would always let you know if fees are going to be increased.
Sale and Purchase of Commercial Properties
These transactions which usually involve the transfer of a commercial lease are more complex, particularly if a business is being transferred as a going concern.
The basic starting price for the transfer of a lease transaction is £800 plus VAT. If you are buying a commercial lease you will also have to pay the Landlords solicitors costs for a licence to assign and these fees are in the region of £1200 and upwards plus VAT. Please contact us to discuss a quote.
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Call Clinton Davis Pallis Solicitors for conducting buying and selling your home or business, probate and will services Landlord and Tenant in the Crouch End Hornsey and Haringey areas.
Emergency 24hr telephone number for police station assistance: 07767 497 423
We practise in England and Wales and we are a solicitor's practice regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority SRA no 312864.
VAT no 221 0470 24