Everyone knows that buying a home is one of the most expensive purchases we’ll ever make and that the costs are more than just the price of the property. There are lots of fees and costs involved with buying and selling a house, including conveyancing fees. So what do conveyancing fees cover?
Charges for Conveyancing
Prices for conveyancing – as with any legal service – will vary from one firm of solicitors to the next. They might also vary depending on the size of the house and how complicated the case might be.
The first part of your conveyancing fees is the legal fees: what your solicitor charges for their expertise, and the time they spend working for you.
The second part of your fees comes from disbursements, which cover any costs incurred by the solicitor from third parties on your behalf. Commonly, this would include searches on the property. Fees might increase if those searches find anything, like close proximity to a body of water or to a mine, for example. Your solicitor should highlight any costs like these before committing to them, though many are unavoidable.
All disbursements should be itemised so you can see exactly what you have paid for, and it often helps to ask for a list of the essential costs up front; often a quote will be for the legal services side alone, so check that it is an all-encompassing figure. Transparency is important, so any firm not willing to be absolutely clear over what you’ll pay is probably not the firm for you.
The disbursements you will have to pay for include:
. Fees to the Land Registry relating to Title Deeds and changing ownership.
. Local authority searches to highlight proposed development in the area as well as specifics relating to the property such as issues with the drainage.
. Stamp Duty Land Tax. Many people have taken advantage of the government’s Stamp Duty Holiday during the pandemic.
Compare Your Quotes
The market is currently buoyant, which can mean that conveyancing solicitors are busy. It remains important to get several quotes before you instruct a solicitor. You might also consider fixed fee conveyancing from experts like Sam Conveyancing so you know exactly what your bill will be with no hidden extras.
Consumer group Which? has more information about the costs involved in buying a house.
Often you will be expected to pay a deposit (usually around 10% of the anticipated final fee) to secure the services of a solicitor, and then the balance once the transaction is finished. You should expect to pay fees for disbursements as you go.