Average Cost Of Solicitors Fees For First Time Buyers

Average Cost Of Solicitors Fees For First Time BuyersIf you are thinking about buying your first home, you will no doubt be asking “How much are average cost of solicitors fees for first time buyers?” Along with the legal costs, you also need to budget for other payments such as Stamp Duty, the Land Registry’s fee for registering your purchase and the cost of searches. We take a look at what to expect, as well as the process of buying your first home.

Our conveyancers regularly act for buyers who are purchasing their first home. We know how vital it is to have the right help when you start out on the path to home ownership and we understand how important it is that your transaction goes as smoothly as possible.

We have in-depth experience in all types of conveyancing, meaning we are able to deal effectively with any difficulties that might arise. If you instruct us to represent you, we will stay in close contact throughout and make sure that you understand what is happening and that you can ask us any questions you have as they arise.

If you are considering buying your first home and you would like a free initial chat, we would be happy to hear from you. Call us on 01482 300 200, email us at welcome@lockings.co.uk or complete a Free Online Enquiry and we will call you back promptly. We have offices in Beverley, Hull and York and deal with conveyancing in East Yorkshire and beyond.

How much are solicitors fees for first time buyers?

The amount of average solicitors fees for first time buyers will depend on several factors, such as where the property is in and whether it is freehold or leasehold. If you will be buying a leasehold property, the legal fees will be higher as there is substantially more work involved. Your solicitor will need to look at the terms of the lease, check these have been complied with, examine management company accounts, check that buildings insurance is in place and look at the overall management of the property to ensure everything is in order. You can also expect regional variations in the cost of conveyancing.

At Lockings Solicitors, we always make sure that our legal costs for conveyancing are competitive, while also offering an outstanding service. We know that budgeting is important for first time buyers and you will find our service to be excellent value for money.

For more information on the costs of conveyancing for first time buyers, download our Free Guide to Conveyancing Fees.

What other expenses are there for first time buyers?

There are a range of other costs involved in buying your first home, including the following:

Search fees

You will need to have a number of searches carried out. The main searches include a local search and drainage enquiries. The local search will provide a wide range of information, including planning agreements, whether the property is listed or in a conservation area, tree protection orders, footpaths, highways information, breaches of planning consents and statutory notices that affect the property.

Local search fees vary, depending on the local authority involved. At Lockings Solicitors, we use a private search company to carry out local searches. This avoids the risk of delay and is also more cost-effective and more reliable than asking the local authority to provide answers directly.

For more information, see our article on local searches.

A drainage search will let you know whether the property is connected to the sewerage system and where this runs and is always carried out.

You may be advised to obtain other searches, depending on the property. These include an environmental search, which will provide information about potential environmental hazards, a coal mining search for properties in former mining areas and radon reports for areas affected by radon gas.

Stamp Duty

The amount of Stamp Duty Land Tax or SDLT you will be required to pay depends on the purchase price of your property and whether you fall under the government’s definition of a ‘first time buyer’. If you are a first time buyer, you will pay less Stamp Duty than someone who has owned a property before.

If you have never owned an interest in a residential property in the UK or anywhere else in the world and you intend to occupy the property as your main residence, you are classed as a first time buyer. If you are buying jointly with someone else, they must also be a first time buyer for you to qualify for the lower rate of Stamp Duty.

Standard rates of Stamp Duty are as follows:

Property Price Stamp Duty rate
Up to £250,000 Zero
The next £675,000 (the portion from £250,001 to £925,000) 5%
The next £575,000 (the portion from £925,001 to £1.5 million) 10%
The remaining amount (the portion above £1.5 million) 12%

If you and anyone you are buying with qualify as a first time buyer, you can claim a discount, as follows:

  • no SDLT up to £425,000
  • 5% SDLT on the portion from £425,001 to £625,000

There is no discount if the purchase price is over £625,000.

HM Land Registry fee

The Land Registry charge a fee for registering the property into your name following completion. The fee depends on the price paid for the property.

Mortgage arrangement fee

Your mortgage lender is likely to have a range of fees that you will need to pay, such as an initial booking fee, an arrangement fee and a valuation fee.

Money transfer fees

There will be a cost for money to be transferred electronically, both when money is sent by your lender to your solicitor and when your solicitor sends the purchase money to the seller’s solicitor.

Survey fee

You are always advised to have a survey carried out before you buy a property. The type of survey you have will depend on the property you are buying. If it is fairly new and there are no obvious issues, you may decide that a medium or level 2 survey is sufficient. For an older home or where there have been substantial alterations or you wish to carry out work yourself, a more in-depth level 3 survey might be more appropriate.

You should not rely on your mortgage valuation fee, as this is often just a cursory look at the property to ensure that it is sufficient security for the loan.

Budgeting for your purchase

We know how important it is to enter into your first purchase with all of the necessary knowledge. If you would like to discuss the costs of buying your first home so that you can accurately budget, we will be pleased to help you. We can go through all of the expenses with you so that you know how much you will need to pay for each item and what the total will be.

Contact our East Yorkshire conveyancing solicitors for first time buyers

If you are thinking of buying your first home, we will be happy to hear from you. We can talk through the process with you, answer your questions and give you an accurate estimate of our solicitors fees for first time buyers.

Please call us for a FREE initial chat on 01482 300 200, email us at welcome@lockings.co.uk or fill in our Free Online Enquiry and we will call you back promptly. We have offices in Beverley, Hull and York and deal with conveyancing in East Yorkshire and beyond.

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