Conveyancing solicitors

Moving home isn't cheap, which is why it's important that you chose the right legal team to carry out your conveyancing.

Everything you need to know about the available help-to-buy schemes, including your rights and necessary legalities.

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From sorting utilities to setting up a Royal Mail re-direct, our list will ensure nothing is forgotten as your move gets closer.

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Three generations of one family living under the same roof may seem daunting, but it's a practical way to save money. See our tips for harmonious living and legal advice.

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From simple changes, to more costly improvements, our extensive guide will help you to improve the value of your home.

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Helping to put your child on the property ladder? We’ve put together our top legal and life tips.

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Buying a property with a friend can be cost-effective, but it’s important to consider the legal implications and day-to-day practicalities too. See our guide for top tips and advice.

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Being a live-in landlord can be a great way to save money, but there are some legalities to consider, as well as the implications of living with tenants. See our top tips for protecting your interests.

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If you’re thinking of purchasing a property for rental, read our guide for everything you need to know about your legal obligations.

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QualitySolicitors is proud to promise no hidden costs within our fees; granting you complete transparency into our pricing.

Our team carry out more conveyancing in the UK than anyone else. With a network of over 100 offices, we understand your local area.

Our expert conveyancing solicitors look after your legal position and will keep you up-to-date throughout the process. We’re open six days a week and provide a same-day response. 

Our conveyancing solicitors provide a complete service

We provide an extensive conveyancing service, so you can relax, knowing we’ll take care of everything. As part of our home moving service we:

Investigate the property

We’ll let you know of any legal restrictions on the use of the building or land, issues over boundaries, rights of way, neighbour disputes and legal guidance on the surveyors’ report.

Investigate the surrounding area

Using our local knowledge and experience, we’ll investigate whether there are any plans for major road works or developments on neighbouring land that might affect you.

Any additional costs for this will be advised before the work is carried out.

Support with final negotiations over price

In most cases, we’ll be on hand to assist with any price negotiations and clarification over what is, or isn’t, included in the final price.

Contract for sale

Our property lawyers will make sure you have a contract for sale that protects you, by covering all the important issues and preventing any nasty surprises.

  1. Preparing to buy

    Contact your mortgage company and chosen solicitor early on, to ensure everything’s in place, ready for when you find your new home and make an offer.

  2. Property investigations (searches)

    Once your offer has been accepted, we’ll start our detailed investigations on the property and surrounding area, such as the local authority, water authority and environmental searches.

  3. Mortgage and property survey

    If you’re using one, the mortgage company will arrange a valuation before making a formal offer. If you choose to have a survey or buyer’s report completed, this can be arranged at this stage.

  4. Contract Reporting

    Following our investigations of the property survey, we will report to both you and your mortgage lender, if you require one, and advise of the results of the searches / survey and highlight the key factors of the property and surrounding areas. During this stage, we will also attempt to arrange the next step, the ‘exchange of contracts’.

  5. Agreement (exchange of contracts

    At this stage, you and the seller will have your lawyers exchange signed copies of the contract, confirming a binding agreement. The moving date will be finalised, and you will need to pay the deposit (usually around 10% of the agreed price). 

  6. Moving day (completion)

    The final balance will be transferred to the seller. We’ll let you know when the money has been received, so you can collect the keys from the estate agent and move in. We will then pay your Stamp Duty and register the sale with the Land Registry.

  1. Preparing to sell

    Get in touch with us early on, so we can ensure everything is ready for when you accept an offer.

  2. Buyer’s investigations (searches)

    We’ll supply the buyer’s solicitors with the information they need on your property and help you respond to any questions they have.

  3. Buyer’s property survey or valuation

    The buyer’s mortgage company will arrange a property valuation before agreeing to lend any money. We’ll then give you an indication of the final balance of any mortgage to be repaid on this property.

  4. Buyers enquiries

    Respond to any enquiries from the buyers solicitors. During this stage, we will try to arrange the next step, which is the ‘exchange of contracts.

  5. Agreement (exchange of contracts)

    You and the buyer will confirm a binding agreement once your lawyers have exchanged signed copies of the contract. The moving date will be agreed and the buyer will pay a deposit. 

  6. Moving day (completion)

    You will move out by the agreed time and give your keys to your estate agent. We’ll let you know as soon as we receive the buyer’s money and will complete the final paperwork needed. 

When you move home, there are two main types of costs involved. Legal costs are paid to your lawyer, whilst ‘disbursements’ (costs paid to others) are handled by your lawyer on your behalf. Below we separate out some of the common costs to help you understand what’s involved.

Your true legal costs are the costs payable to your lawyer for their work on your behalf.

These are usually based on the value of the property and you should be informed of the amount before deciding which law firm to use.

Be wary of conveyancing services that promote a low initial fee, but hide extra costs in their small print.

Costs for searches

These are charges for checks of the property and surrounding land. In each case, there is a fee payable to the company providing the search, which your lawyer will normally pay on your behalf and later reclaim in their bill to you.

One example of a search is a local authority search, which investigates whether there are any plans that might affect your property, like building a new road or a housing development.

Other common searches include a water authority and drainage search, which looks at details about the mains water supply and sewage removal, and an environmental search, which investigates previous uses of the land housing the property, to check for risk of contamination.

Your conveyancing lawyer will be to advise you on which searches you should pay to have completed.

Other conveyancing costs

Your conveyancing lawyer will advise you about any other costs involved.

These could include a fee from the land registry to update their records of who owns a property (if you’re buying), or to produce a copy of their records to prove you own a property (if you’re selling).

Another common cost is the charge applied for dealing with mortgage companies. Your lawyer should set out and explain these costs upfront. 

Stamp duty SDLT

Stamp duty, or Stamp Duty Land Tax (often abbreviated to SDLT), is a tax applied by the government to the purchaser of a residential property purchased at over £250,000.

It must be paid within 14 days of completing the purchase of a residential property. 

Law firms often deal with this on your behalf, which means it is sometimes included as part of the quote for conveyancing.

The amount you pay depends on when you bought the property, such as how much you paid for it and whether you are eligible for relief or exemption.

There are different rates of SDLT when buying a residential property, the rate you pay will depend on whether you:

  • are a first-time buyer
  • already own a property and are buying an additional property
  • you’re not a UK resident

Stamp duty rates

Stamp duty rates changed in September 2022 and the following rates will remain in place until March 2025.

Those purchasing another residential property will typically pay an additional 3% on top of the standard rate:

Purchase price SDLT rate

Buy to Let/Additional Home Rate

Up to £250,000 0% 3%
£250,001 to £925,000 5% 8%
£925,001 to £1.5 million 10% 13%
Over £1.5 million 12% 15%
 

Rates if you’re buying your first home

You can claim a discount (relief) so you don’t pay any Stamp Duty Land Tax up to £425,000 and 5% on the value from £425,001 to £625,000.

You’re eligible to claim the relief if you and anyone else you’re buying with are first-time buyers.

If the price is over £625,000, you follow the rules for people who have bought a home before.


Land Transaction Tax (LTT)

Land Transaction Tax, often abbreviated to LTT, replaced Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) in Wales from 1 April 2018. The Welsh Revenue Authority (WRA) collects and manages the tax for the Welsh Government.

It must be paid within 30 days of completing the purchase of property.

Law firms often deal with this on your behalf, which means it is sometimes included as part of the quote for conveyancing.

How does LTT work?

You will pay LTT if you buy a freehold property; buy a new or existing leasehold; or are otherwise transferred land or property in exchange for payment.

LTT is applied depending on the purchase price of the property in a similar way income tax is calculated. So you will only pay LTT on the amount of the property that falls within a specific price band.

What are the LTT rates?

When you buy a residential property (freehold or leasehold) the following rates will apply to the portion of the price you pay in each band.Below are the most common rates:

Main residential freehold property

Price threshold LTT rate
The portion up to and including £225,000 0%
The portion over £225,000 up to and including £400,000 6%
The portion over £400,000 up to and including £750,000 7.5%
The portion over £750,000 up to and including £1.5 million 10%
The portion over £1.5 million 12%
 

Main residential leasehold property

You may need to pay LTT based upon the rates above, on the purchase price of the lease. However LTT is not payable on rents payable under a lease for residential property.

LTT higher residential tax rates

These are an additional 3% on top of the main residential rates listed above and are payable where you buy a residential property when you already own one or more residential properties.

Non-residential freehold property

Price threshold LTT rate
The portion up to and including £225,000 0%
The portion over £225,000 up to and including £250,000 1%
The portion over £250,000 up to and including £1,000,000 5%
The portion over £1,000,000 6%
 

Non-residential leasehold property

You may need to pay LTT based upon the rates above, on the purchase price of the lease. Where the lease is for a non-residential leasehold property and rent is due on the grant of the lease, rent over the term of a newly granted lease is calculated on its net present value (NPV) and may be liable to LTT.

Where tax is payable on rents due under the term of a lease, the applicable rates are:

NPV threshold LTT rate
The portion up to and including £225,000 0%
The portion over £225,000 up to and including £2 million 1%
The portion over £2 million 2%
 

For further advice on LTT visit the Welsh Revenue Authority’s website at https://beta.gov.wales/welsh-revenue-authority or go to https://beta.gov.wales/land-transaction-tax-calculator to work out how much LTT you’ll need to pay for your purchase.

Transfer of title

Looking to transfer the ownership of your property from one person to another?

Although a relatively straightforward process, it’s important it is completed correctly, to ensure everything progresses smoothly and to avoid unexpected problems in the future.

Our expert property solicitors will help with every stage of a transfer of title, providing support to complete your transfer efficiently and correctly.

We’ll contact the Land Registry on your behalf, ensure all necessary documentation is completed correctly, and talk through any issues that might arise from the transfer, granting you peace of mind that all the legal details are covered.

We’ll keep you informed throughout every stage, to help ensure your transfer process is swift and straightforward. 

Remortgaging

As a homeowner you may, at some point, wish to remortgage your property to take advantage of a better deal, or to release money from your property.

At QualitySolicitors, we make remortgaging as quick and simple as possible. We’ll guide you through the process, take care of any paperwork and legal checks and review the terms of your existing mortgage to avoid any unwanted surprises further down the line.

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