Buying and selling a house can be a heavy burden. Here at Burnett Barker Solicitors we do it every day and will help share the load.
We think buying or selling a house is difficult enough without extra headaches, so we’ll appoint a dedicated lawyer to your case who you can keep in touch with by email, phone, letter or popping into the office.
We’re always happy to discuss your proposed sale or purchase, before you make a decision, and will give you a clear and fixed price.
Our “No Sale – No Fee” guarantee means that we won’t charge you a penny in legal fees if, through no fault of your own, your sale or purchase falls through.
Our residential conveyancing service
We provide a fast and professional service at competitive prices.
- No Sale, No Fee as standard and at no extra cost
- Your own dedicated residential property specialist lawyer
- No hidden charges
- No call centres
- No secret profit on searches and other disbursements
- Acting in YOUR Best Interests – some Conveyancers will routinely act for both you and for your buyer/seller. We don’t: we will always act in YOUR best interests
- £3,000,000 Professional Indemnity Insurance – we’ve got you covered
- Conveyancing Quality Scheme: We have been accredited by the CQS since it was first launched and have been re-accredited with flying colours every year since.
Nearly all of our conveyancing work is offered at a fixed price, so you’ll know what you need to pay and when, with no nasty surprises.
We’ll always give you an individual quotation once we know all the information we need to be able to give you a full breakdown.
Purchase of a £200,000 freehold residential property – example charges
Our fees cover all of the work required to complete the purchase of a freehold residential property, including dealing with registration at the Land Registry and 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 is in Wales.
We’ll always give you an individual quotation once we know all the information we need to be able to give you a full breakdown including, for example, Stand Duty Land Tax which has not been included in this example as it can vary enormously depending on the circumstances.
The following is an example only and we’ll be very happy to give you a full quote, based on your circumstances – just give us a call!
Example of fees and disbursements for someone buying a freehold residential property in Bury St Edmunds at £200,000:
Fees for our services:
- Core legal services: £650
- Electronic money transfer: £30
- ID checking: £10
Disbursements (payments we make to others on your behalf):
- Searches: £180
- Land Registry registration fee £95
- VAT payable on our fees: £138.00
Estimated total: £1,103.00
For the same purchase but with a mortgage, we typically charge a small additional fee of £100 (£120 inc VAT) to cover the work involved in dealing with your lender.
Disbursements are costs related to your matter that are payable to third parties, such as Land Registry fees and searches. We handle the payment of the disbursements on your behalf to ensure a smoother process.
We carry out a Local Authority search, drainage & water report, environmental report and planning report as standard. Depending on the location of the property you’re purchasing, additional searches may be necessary such as a mining report or flood risk assessment.
Stamp Duty Land Tax
Stamp Duty Land Tax must be paid to the government if you buy land or property over a certain price in England and Northern Ireland or in Wales. Stamp Duty Land Tax has not been included in this example as it will depend on your individual circumstances which we’ll be happy to discuss with you. Different rates apply depending on where and when the purchase is completed and your own circumstances. You can find out more and calculate the amount you will need to pay by using HMRC’s website or if the property is located in Wales by using the Welsh Revenue Authority’s website.
Where SDLT is payable, we do not usually make a charge for dealing with it for you.
There are additional fees and disbursements when buying a leasehold property. As we carry out a lot more checks for you with this type of work we usually make an additional charge of £175 (£210 inc VAT). You should also expect to pay for a “Management Pack” from the landlord. The cost of the Management Pack is set by the landlord. Typically packs range from £200 to £400. When we know the price of the pack, we will let you know.
Occasionally issues arise in a land or property purchase where insurance can be put in place as a solution. Some examples of this are where the seller has breached a restrictive covenant, a key document is missing, or there is no building regulations approval.
Usually the seller will be expected to cover the cost of the insurance, but it’s a matter of negotiation as to which party to the transaction pays for the insurance cover. The cost of the insurance will depend on the nature of the insurance and typically insurance premiums range from £15 to £300 for this price property, depending on what the insurance is for.
Remember, all of the above is an example only and we’ll always give you an individual quotation once we know all the information we need to be able to give you a full breakdown.
How long will my house purchase take?
It is very difficult to estimate how long it will take from your offer being accepted until you can move in as it depends on a number of factors over which we have no control.
As a rough average, we would recommend that you allow between 8 and 12 weeks from your offer being accepted until the property is yours.
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 without a mortgage, the timescale may be shorter if the build is already structurally complete, or longer if the property has not been built or completed yet.
However, if you are buying a leasehold property that requires an extension of the lease, this can take significantly longer and depends on a number of different factors. In such a situation additional charges will apply based on the anticipated extra work involved and the specific situation. We always discuss additional fees and timescales in conveyancing work with you before carrying out any additional work.
Stages of the conveyancing process
The precise stages involved in the purchase of a residential property vary according to the circumstances. However, some key stages in most purchases include:
- Take your instructions and give you initial advice
- Check finances are in place to fund purchase and contact lender’s solicitors if needed
- Receive and advise on contract documents
- Carry out searches
- Obtain further planning documentation if required
- Make any necessary enquiries of seller’s solicitor
- Give you advice on all documents and information received
- Go through conditions of mortgage offer with you
- Send final contract to you for signature
- Agree completion date (date from which you own the property)
- Exchange contracts and notify you that this has happened
- Arrange for all monies needed to be received from lender and you
- Complete purchase
- Deal with payment of Stamp Duty/Land Tax
- Deal with application for registration at Land Registry
Additional property services
It’s not just a house purchase we can help with. We can also offer help and advice in the following property-related areas:
- Switching mortgage provider
- Buy-to-let investments
- The right to buy your council house
- Shared equity purchase (part buying & part renting)
- Keyworker scheme purchase
- Advice on joint tenancy issues
- Plot sales
- Auction sales
All our staff receive frequent updates and training on new regulations and our membership of the Law Society Conveyancing Quality Scheme ensures the highest standards are met.
We’ve helped thousands of clients move and are recommended by many of Bury St Edmunds’ leading independent estate agents. We can help you too! Call us on 01284 701131 or contact us today.