Conveyancing Process and Costs

A Conveyancer will take you through the entire selling, purchase and remortgaging process. They deal with all the paperwork, ensuring that all legal requirements and obligations are met. They also represent your lender, making sure that your existing mortgage is repaid.
The whole conveyancing process can feel like a minefield, a good Conveyancer will keep you regularly informed. They will let you know what documents are needed, some will need to be signed and returned before the next stage can commence.
Prompt return of requested documents is vital; any delay can cause untold stress for all concerned, by delaying just one document the entire procedure could come to an abrupt stop.
A purchase contract will be obtained from the sellers’ solicitors; this contains details of ownership and the property itself.

All pre-contract enquiries will be dealt with; office copies, guarantees, planning consent etc will be obtained. The Conveyancer will then obtain the sellers’ fixtures and fittings. This document will be given to you for checking. When the mortgage offer arrives, contracts will need to be signed, a deposit given, to be held by your Conveyancer until ‘exchange’.
When all Mortgage conditions have been met, and the sellers are ready to move ahead, a mutually agreed completion date is set. Contracts can now be exchanged and the transfer deed effected.

Your Conveyancer will then call down the mortgage advance from the lender and send you the final completion statement.

When the day of completion arrives your Conveyancer will pay the required amount to the sellers’ Solicitor to obtain the title deeds. This is when you are able to move into your new home!

Your name and mortgage will now be registered by your Conveyancer at H.M Land Registry. The deeds will then be sent to your lender to be held as security for their mortgage advance.
Nothing is legally binding before the exchange of contracts; there are no refunds for surveys, search fees and legal costs if the sale falls through.

Sellers and buyers are legally bound to complete on an agreed date between exchange of contracts and completion. On completion day sellers will move out, buyers move in, monies will be exchanged by your Conveyancer.
Legal fees - These are the fees to be paid by you to the Conveyancer/Solicitor for the actual conveyancing process. The amount charged is based on the Solicitors time, cost of legal registrations and disbursement costs.
Like most professionals these fees can vary, although 1% of the purchase price is not unusual.

Included in the conveyancing costs are the following:
Local searches- reveal any matters affecting the property. (A home information pack will be required on a property with three bedrooms or more, this includes a sale statement, searches and evidence of title).

Land Registry fees- transfer of ownership on the register from old to present owner.
Stamp Duty (if applicable) - This is what you pay to the Inland Revenue when you purchase a property worth more than £125.000. This is payable on Land, houses, flats and buildings.
Lenders arrangement fee - This is the fee for setting up your mortgage. This is charged for arranging a capped or fixed rate mortgage. This fee can be between £300-£450.

Mortgage Broker’s fee - This can vary, some charge a fixed fee, some a percentage of the mortgage arranged and others a fee for consultation.
Most will charge 0.25-0.5%, you should never pay more than 1.5% of the mortgage.

If the broker receives a fee from the lender, this must be disclosed to you.
Mortgage lender’s valuation fee - Your lender will send a surveyor to value the property that you are purchasing, to ensure that it is worth the amount being paid. This is a fee that will be incurred by you; a few competitive lenders waive this fee.
Mortgage lenders legal fee
The solicitor that you are using needs to be on the lenders approved legal panel, if this is not the case your lender may appoint their solicitor. This will be at your cost, they can charge what they wish, so be careful.
Valuation Report
This will cost between £250-£350+VAT. This does not impart enough information to base a purchase on; so many lenders will appoint their surveyor to carry out a Homebuyers Report. This will cost between £350-£1000+VAT. This report will give a good indication of any defects (damp, subsidence, structural problems) and the approximate cost in rectifying these. At times, a thorough more detailed analysis is required. Carpets will be lifted, the roof examined, services tested. This may be required for an older, expensive property.
Building and contents insurance
A freehold property needs to have insurance in place from the moment of exchange.
Leasehold is different, as it is the landlord’s responsibility to ensure that the building is insured. This policy needs to be valid until the day the removal van moves you.
Shop around for you insurance, the best deals are rarely with your lender.

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