Legal Fee Information for

Purchase of a Freehold or Leasehold Residential Property

Legal Fees

Our fees cover all the work required to complete a standard purchase, including dealing with third parties, dealing with standard mortgage lenders’ enquiries*, registration 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.

VAT, currently 20%, will be payable on all our fees and some disbursements, and we will clearly confirm which disbursements carry VAT in formal quotation or as we advise you to incur them.

Our average standard legal fee for a residential Freehold Property Purchase is from £700.00 – £5,000.00 plus VAT (£840.00 – £6,000.00 Inc. VAT), for properties up to the value of £5,000,000 plus disbursements, depending on the purchase price of the property as seen below:

Property Value

Legal Fee

VAT

Total

£0 – £100,000.00

£700.00 plus VAT

£140.00

£840.00

£100,000.01 – £200,000.00

£750.00 plus VAT

£150.00

£900.00

£200,000.01 – £300,000.00

£800.00 plus VAT

£160.00

£960.00

£300,000.01 – £350,000.00

£850.00 plus VAT

£170.00

£1,020.00

£350,000.01 – £450,000.00

£900.00 Plus VAT

£180.00

£1,080.00

£450,000.01 – £600,000.00

£950.00 plus VAT

£190.00

£1,140.00

£600,000.01 – £750,000.00

£995.00 plus VAT

£199.00

£1,194.00

£750,000.01 – £1,000,000.00

£1050.00 plus VAT

£210.00

£1,260.00

£1,000,000.01 – £1,500,000.00

£1,500.00 plus VAT

£300.00

£1,800.00

£1,500,000.01 – £2,000,000.00

£2,000.00 plus VAT

£400.00

£2,400.00

£2,000,000.01 – £2,500.000.00

£2,500.00 plus VAT

£500.00

£3,000.00

£2,500.000.01 – £3,000,000.00

£3,000.00 plus VAT

£600.00

£3,600.00

£3,000,000.01 – £3,500,000.00

£3,500.00 plus VAT

£700.00

£4,200.00

£3,500,000.01 – £4,000,000.00

£4,000.00 plus VAT

£800.00

£4,800.00

£4,000,000.01 – £4,500,000.00

£4,500.00 plus VAT

£900.00

£5,400.00

£4,500,000.01 – £5,000,000.00

£5,000.00 plus VAT

£1,000.00

£6,000.00

These prices are subject to additional costs where the land included in title exceeds 1 acre.

£5,000,000.00 +

For properties over £5 million, we typically charge on a percentage basis which is 0.25% of the purchase price plus VAT, depending upon the complexity of the transaction. Our fees are dependent on the agreed purchase price of the property, the location and when other complex factors are involved (such as transactions that involve the sale of multiple dwellings or land) to reflect the proportionate risk of carrying out higher-value transactions for our clients and for more complex transactions, the seniority of the legal adviser appointed.

 

Fee

VAT

Total

Telegraphic Transfer Fee (incurred in most transactions)

£30.00 plus VAT per transfer

£6.00

£36.00

We are required by our regulator to undertake Client Due Diligence (CDD) which is made of up KYC (Know Your Client) and AML (Anti Money Laundering) details of which are contained within our terms of engagement which will be sent to you when instructing us. Due Diligence Fee (includes an electronic Money Laundering Identification check)

£25.00 plus VAT per name

£5.00

£30.00

Completing a Stamp Duty Land Transaction return Form (incurred in all property transactions over £40,000.00)

£100.00 plus VAT

£20.00

£120.00

If the property is unregistered

£300.00 plus VAT

£60.00

£360.00

If the property is Leasehold

£200.00 plus VAT

£40.00

£240.00

If the Leasehold Property is in a building which is at least 11 meters in height or at least five storeys, it may be affected by the Building Safety Act 2022.  Our fee for dealing with a property affected by the Building Safety Act will be as follows:-

   

For a building up to 11 metres 

from £500.00 plus VAT

£100.00

£600.00

For a building up to 18 metres 

from £750.00 plus VAT

£150.00

£900.00

    

If the property is a New Build

£200.00 plus VAT

£40.00

£240.00

If the property is a Shared Ownership Property

£200.00 plus VAT

£40.00

£180.00

Help to Buy Equity Loan

£150.00 plus VAT

£30.00

£180.00

Buying in a Company Name

£300.00 plus VAT

£60.00

£360.00

Selling in a Company Name

£150.00 plus VAT

£30.00

£180.00

Help to Buy ISA or Lifetime ISA

£50.00 plus VAT per ISA

£10.00

£60.00

Arranging an Indemnity Policy

£40.00 plus VAT

£8.00

£48.00

Dealing with a gifted deposit

£50.00 per gift

£10.00

£60.00

Dealing with a Management Company

£150.00

£30.00

£180.00

Declaration of Trust

From £300 plus VAT

£60.00

£360.00

Solar Panel Lease

From £150.00 plus VAT

£30.00

£180.00

Lender Panel Fee

From £30

£6.00

£36.00

Third Lawyer Party Requests

£100.00

£20.00

£120.00

Complex Source of Funds

From £75.00

£15.00

£90.00

Statutory Declaration

£100.00

£20.00

£120.00

Subject to Tenancy

£50.00

£10.00

£60.00

International Anti Money Laundering Check

£20.00

£4.00

£24.00

Below, we detail what services are covered in our standard fee

The final quote will depend on the value and location of the property and the complexity of the transaction. We would warn you that there are some charges made by others which we will not be able to ascertain until we are instructed and make the necessary enquiries. 

If at any stage our fees change, we will notify you and discuss the reason for any changes. This would typically occur if you change your instructions or your case involves an unforeseen complexity.

Our average fees assume that:

  1. 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 ancillary to the main transaction.
  2. For Leasehold matters this is the assignment of an existing lease and is not the grant of a new lease.
  3. The transaction is concluded in a timely manner and no unforeseen complication arise.
  4. All parties to the transaction are co-operative and there is no unreasonable delay from third parties providing documentation.
  5. No indemnity policies are required. Additional disbursements may apply if indemnity policies are required.

 

*Some lenders have significant conditions to comply with such as, but not limited to, Paragon Mortgages and Aldermore.  In these circumstances we reserve the right to make an additional charge (any additional fees will be discussed with you before being incurred).

We do not charge you for acting on behalf of your mortgage lender (if any, like many other firms).  If your lender instructs us via an online portal / platform which we are required to update and upload documentation, we will pass onto you the fee of £35 plus VAT which they charge us to use the platform. For every additional mortgage offer issued, the platform will charge £1.00 plus VAT.

If your property is in Wales you pay Land Transaction Tax instead of Stamp Duty Land Tax.

If your matter requires additional work, that is not included in this estimate, we shall inform you of any additional costs as soon as possible.  Additional work that is not anticipated may include, but are not limited to, dealing with entries on the Land Registry title such as adding or removing a restriction, dealing with registered notices, redeeming more than one legal charge, drafting statutory declarations etc.

Disbursements and Other Costs

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

You will be provided with a full list of disbursements in our formal quotation.  If you need to incur any further disbursements during your case, you will be notified in advance of the reason and the amount.

Typical disbursements and other costs that may apply in you matter will include: – 

  • Electronic Registration with HM Land Registry £45.00
  • Pre-Completion title check (per title) £3 plus VAT (£3.60 Inc. VAT)
  • Bankruptcy search fees (per person) £3.00 plus VAT (£3.60 Inc. VAT)
  • Lawyer checker £12 + VAT (£14.40 Inc. VAT) 
  • HM Land Registry fee. The fees chargeable by the land registry can be found here https://www.gov.uk/guidance/hm-land-registry-registration-services-fees

 

Stamp Duty or Land Tax (on purchase)

SDLT (Stamp Duty*) applies to most property purchase transactions. We will advise you of the stamp duty applicable to your matter and you can visit the HMRC website for more information on the HMRC’s website.

Typical Property Search Fees 

Search fees vary from case to case depending on the local authority. We will advise you which searches you need for your transaction and the cost of each search. Our average fee for a standard property search pack is £264.05 inc. VAT. Chancel Indemnity Insurance £11.00 (not liable for VAT). Total for Searches £264.05 subject to you and your lender’s requirements.  Typical searches include: 

  • Local land charges search; 
  • Enquiries of the local authority; 
  • Environment search; 
  • Planning Search; 
  • Chancel repair liability indemnity; and 
  • Water and Drainage search 

 

Other official local searches may be required by your lender and your conveyancer will use their local knowledge to confirm which local searches you will need. A standard local authority search will reveal whether any legal restrictions or obligations affect the property. These include tree preservation orders, flood searches as well as the property’s planning and building enforcement history. Other various searches maybe required depending on your location and can reveal whether the property is in the vicinity of any planned major infrastructure projects. Relevant searches can also reveal if the property is built on or near land that was affected by mining and can include a search for mine shafts and subsidence.

We will advise you which searches you need for your transaction and the cost of each search. 

Example: Purchase of a Freehold Residential Property

If you are a previous homeowner buying a freehold semi-detached property in Northamptonshire for £225,000.00 in your sole name with a standard high street mortgage the range of fees, VAT and disbursements will be as follows: –

  • Legal fee £960.00 (inc VAT)
  • Due Diligence Fee £30.00 (inc VAT)
  • Search fees £264.05 (inc VAT)
  • Chancel Indemnity Insurance £11.00
  • SDLT fee £120.00 (inc VAT)
  • HM Land Registry fee £150.00
  • Bank Transfer Fee   £36.00 (inc VAT)
  • Land Registry Search Fee  £3.00
  • Bankruptcy Fee £2.00
  • Stamp Duty Land Tax £0.00

Total:               £1,575.60

Referral arrangements

In some cases, we may pay a referral fee to a mortgage broker or estate agent.  The fee is generally between £100 – £150.  We will tell you if we are paying a referral fee on your case.

Anticipated disbursements for a leasehold purchase **

There may be further disbursements for a Leasehold purchase or the purchase of a freehold property where there is a Management Company which if chargeable is set out in the Lease or Transfer and usually paid to the Landlord or Management Company. We shall not know what charges will be raised, or the cost of these, until we receive the Lease and further Leasehold information from the Landlord or Management Company. However typical additional Leasehold disbursements are as follows:

  • Notice of Transfer fee: This fee, if chargeable, is set out in the Lease. Usually the fee is between £30.00 – £120.00.
  • Notice of Charge fee (if the property is to be mortgaged): This fee is set out in the Lease. Usually the fee is between £30.00 – £120.00.
  • Deed of Covenant fee: This fee is charged by the Management Company for the property and can be difficult to estimate. Usually it is between £50.00 – £150.00.
  • Certificate of Compliance fee: To be confirmed upon receipt of the Lease and can range between £50.00 – £150.00
  • Licence to Assign – £200.00 – £475.00 plus VAT (£240.00 – £570.00 Inc. VAT)
  • Freeholder Replies to Enquiries – £100.00 – £350.00 plus VAT (£120.00 – £420.00 Inc. VAT)
  • Share Certificate – £100.00 – £175.00 plus VAT (£120.00 – £210.00 Inc. VAT)

 

**These fees are set by the management company / freeholder and can vary from property to property. They can, on occasion, be significantly more than the ranges given above and VAT may be charged. We can give you an accurate figure once we have sight of your specific documents.

You should also be aware that ground rent and service charge are likely to apply throughout your ownership of the property. We will confirm the ground rent and the anticipated service charge as soon as we receive this information.

Example: Purchase of a Leasehold Residential Property

If you are a previous homeowner buying a Leasehold property in Northamptonshire for £120,000.00 in your sole name with the assistance of a standard high street mortgage the range of fees, VAT and disbursements will be as follows:

Conveyancer’s fees and disbursements :

  • Legal fee *** £1140.00 (inc VAT)
  • Due Diligence Fee £30.00 (inc VAT)
  • Search fees £264.05 (inc VAT)
  • Chancel Indemnity Insurance  £11.00
  • SDLT fee £120.00 (inc VAT)
  • HM Land Registry fee £150.00
  • Bank Transfer Fee     £36.00 (inc VAT)
  • Land Registry Search Fee  3.00
  • Bankruptcy Fee £2.00
  • Stamp Duty Land Tax £0.00

Total          £1,756.05 (including referral fee, if any)

In some cases, we may pay a referral fee to a mortgage broker or estate agent.  The fee is generally between £100 – £150.  We will tell you if we are paying a referral fee on your case.

*** Our fee assumes that:

  1. this is a standard transaction and that no unforeseen matters will arise including for example, but not limited to, a defect in title which requires remedying prior to completion or the preparation of additional documents ancillary to the main transaction;
  2. this is the assignment of an existing Lease and is not the grant of a new Lease;
  3. the transaction is concluded in a timely manner and no unforeseen complications arise;
  4. all parties to the transaction are co-operative and there is no unreasonable delay from third parties providing documentation;
  5. no indemnity policies are required. Additional disbursements may apply if indemnity policies are required.

 

These fees shown above will vary from property to property and can on occasions be more than the ranges given above. We will give you an accurate figure once we have sight of the relevant documentation.

How long will my property purchase take?

How long it will take from your offer being accepted until you can move into your house will depend on a number of factors. The average process takes between 6 – 12 weeks.

It can be quicker or slower, depending on the parties in the chain. For example, if you are a first time buyer, purchasing a new build property with a mortgage in principle, it could take 4 weeks.

However, if you are buying a Leasehold property that requires an extension of the Lease, this can take significantly longer, between 2 and 6 months. In such a situation, additional charges would apply for the work involved in extending the Lease.

Matters that can typically delay a transaction include delays in searches, issues with a mortgage offer, issues raised in a survey or delays from the other party or the other parties solicitors.

Stages of the Process

The precise stages involved in the purchase of a residential property vary according to the circumstances.  However, the work that we will undertake for you will typically include:

  • Taking your instructions and giving you initial advice
  • Checking finances are in place to fund the 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 received
  • Going through conditions of mortgage offer with you
  • Sending final contract to you for signature
  • Agreeing completion date (date from which you own the property)
  • Exchanging contracts and notify you that this has happened
  • Arranging for all monies needed to be received from lender and you
  • Completing purchase
  • Dealing with payment of Stamp Duty/Land Tax
  • Dealing with application for registration at Land Registry

 

The stages of a Leasehold purchase transaction are the same as that of a freehold purchase.  The difference is mainly that there are more documents to check and read through when dealing with a Leasehold transaction.  Further when dealing with the application for registration, following completion, there are usually other notices such as the notice of transfer etc. to also deal with.

Other Factors and Exclusions

Our fees are fixed, however there may be factors which would typically increase the cost of the fees estimated above. Where there is likely to be any additional cost, we will make sure you are informed of this at the earliest opportunity and a clear estimate of those extra costs will be provided.

  • Value of the property.
  • Where the property is situated
  • Overseas client
  • Purchasing or selling in the name of an individual or a company
  • First-time buyer.
  • New build.
  • Listed buildings
  • First registration of title.
  • In purchase cases, whether primary residence, buy to let or second/holiday home.
  • Multiple owners.
  • Shared ownership scheme.
  • Using a help to buy scheme, and whether it is an equity loan or ISA.
  • Purchase under right to buy.
  • Purchase at auction.
  • Property has been repossessed.

 

These fees vary from property to property and can on occasion, be significantly more than the ranges given above. We can give you an accurate figure once we have sight of your specific documents.

Fee Earners

We have several experienced property lawyers who may work on your property transaction. Regardless of who works on your case, they will be supervised by Kathryn Frisby, Partner at Borneo Martell Turner Coulston, a qualified Solicitor, and Head of Residential Conveyancing. For more information on our team members, please visit our meet the team page.

Questions

If you have any questions relating to our services and our fees, please contact us on 01604 622101