In accordance with SRA Transparency Guidance 2018, please find below our approach to fees and service in relation to a Freehold Residential Purchase.

What is this going to cost me?

Our charges
Fees incurred by you for a Freehold Purchase are calculated on a fixed fee basis based on the value of the property.

What does this include?
Our fees cover all the work required to complete the purchase of your freehold property. This includes:

  • Acting for you in the purchase
  • Acting for any lender in the purchase

The legal fees are calculated on a fixed fee basis using an hourly rate. Our fee assumes that:

  • This is a standard transaction and that no unforeseen matters arise including, for example (but not limited to) a defect in title which requires remedying prior to completion, or the preparation of additional documents which are required for the main transaction;
  • The transaction is concluded in a timely manner and no unforeseen complications arise;
  • All parties to the transaction are co-operative and there is no unreasonable delay from third parties providing documentation or information;
  • No indemnity policies are required. Additional costs may be incurred if these are required.

Should any of these become apparent during the course of the transaction, your contact will advise you as soon as possible, and advise you of any cost implications.

Disbursements
Disbursements are expenses that are payable to third parties, such as Land Registry fees. We handle the payment of disbursements on your behalf to ensure a smoother process.

The disbursements we usually anticipate for a freehold purchase are detailed below. This is not an exhaustive list and other disbursements may apply depending on property:

  • Land Registry Fee £40 – £910 (depending on price of property)
  • Search fees £350 – £400

Normally we require a payment of £350 on account of search fees.

What else will I need to consider?

The below are all payments you will need to consider, which are likely to need to be paid in addition to the fees and disbursements detailed above.

Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT):
Stamp Duty Land Tax payments are dependent on the price of the property and the buyer’s invidual circumstances. SDLT is payable in addition to legal costs and disbursements. You can calculate the amount you will need to pay by using the HMRC’s website link here.

What happens if I change my mind and don’t want to go through with the transaction anymore?

Should you wish to terminate the transaction at any time, you will be liable for any costs and disbursements incurred to date, and will be billed for them.

Additional services and searches

The following additional services and searches are available and will be charged in addition to the fixed fee quoted to you, based on the cost of the additional search (if relevant) and an hourly rate to provide the additional service.

  • Locational searches (for example, Coal Mining in the north of the UK)
  • Planning searches
  • Chancel liability insurance

How long is my transaction likely to take?

How long the Purchase of a freehold can take depends on a number of factors, for example the number of parties in a chain.

If you are a first time buyer, purchasing a chain-free property with a mortgage, it could take as little as six weeks.

If you are buying a freehold property with more complicated arrangements or in a long chain, it may take as much as ten weeks.

The average timescale for a freehold purchase from acceptance of offer to completion is six to eight weeks.

What can I expect from this process?

The key stages in an average freehold Purchase are:

  • Taking your instructions and giving you initial advice
  • Checking finances are in place to fund purchase and contacting lender’s solicitors if needed
  • Receiving and advising on contract documents
  • Carrying out searches
  • Obtaining further planning documentation if required
  • Making any necessary enquiries of seller’s solicitor
  • Giving you advice on all documents and information you receive
  • Going through the conditions of the mortgage offer with you
  • Reporting to you on the purchase
  • Sending final contract to you for signature, or reporting to you in person
  • Advising you on joint ownership
  • Obtaining pre-completion searches
  • Agreeing completion date (date from which you own the property)
  • Exchanging contracts and notifying you that this has happened
  • Arranging all monies needed to be received from lender and you
  • Effecting legal completion
  • Dealing with payment of Stamp Duty Land Tax
  • Dealing with registration at the Land Registry
  • Liaising as necessary with your mortgage lender.

We are dependent on information received from the counterparty’s lawyers, and can only work as fast as the information is given to us. We will keep you informed if we are experiencing any delays which are likely to impact on the desired completion date of the transaction.

Who is going to do this work for me and what is their experience?

The work will be carried out by one or more of our lawyers in the Residential Conveyancing Team.