As you get ready to sell your house, one of the key problems you’re facing right now is choosing the right conveyancer or conveyancing solicitor to help you finish off your sale. Keep in mind, though, that conveyancing has become an incredibly competitive business, so the conveyancing quotes you might see online can be cheaper than what they actually end up being in your particular sale. How can you know what the actual conveyancing cost to sell a house might be? If you talk to a money-saving expert on conveyancing, they’ll tell you to ask lots of questions throughout the process so you know exactly what to expect when the bill comes. The cost of a conveyancer to sell a house can vary from firm to firm, so buckle up!
Step 1: Learn What’s in a Quote
Before you can look at the average conveyancing fees for selling a house, you need to know what you might be looking for in a quote. There are two basic parts to a conveyancer’s quote.
- The Actual Fee: This is the heart of the cost of working with a conveyancer. It may vary quite a bit, but it’s usually the bulk of the quote.
- The Disbursements: These are the things your solicitor must pay after you sell your home. The cost of the disbursements won’t vary from professional to professional, or at least they shouldn’t. They’re fixed charges, and typically, you may end up with additional disbursements along the way that are unavoidable. Fortunately, however, your conveyancer should be able to tell you more about those as they pop up.
Step 2: Know What the Average Is
It’s absolutely essential that you learn more about the average conveyancing fees so you know what to expect when you speak with a conveyancer. There are a few things to remember as you look at average fees, though.
- Conveyancing fees can vary by the size of the transaction.
- The fees you will pay vary depending on whether the property you’re selling is a leasehold or a freehold.
- You may encounter a difference in fees based on where the property is that you’re selling.
Conveyancing quotes vary widely, but they will always vary based on those three key factors.
Step 3: Know What Reasonable Disbursements Are
It may help to know what is reasonable in terms of disbursements in the quote you’re offered. Here are some pretty common disbursements when you’re selling your home.
- ID Check: The law requires a conveyancer to get proof of your ID to meet money laundering regulations, so expect that to cost you something.
- Bank Fees: Most banks require TT, or telegraphic transfer, fees when you’re sending large sums of money, and those will be included in your costs.
- Land Registry Fees: When your conveyancer files the title plan at HM Land Registry, you can expect that to cost you something as well.
- Mortgage Property Supplement Fee: While this isn’t always included, it likely will be if you have a mortgage, as the conveyancer will have to work with your lender to redeem your mortgage.
- Unregistered Property Supplement Fee: If you have a property that hasn’t been previously registered with HM Land Registry, your conveyancer will have to take care of that.
- Indemnity Policy: Your buyer may require you to purchase an insurance policy to protect them from any future liabilities, and if that’s the case, your conveyancer will help you purchase that policy.
With this knowledge, you can move forward and select a conveyancer who will meet your needs.
A Few Common Questions
Still, have a few questions about what to expect when it comes to conveyancing costs. Here are a few answers that might be helpful as you work to understand this facet of selling your home.
How Much are Conveyancing Fees for Selling a House?
Currently, the average cost of conveyancing when selling is £2,000 in most cases. It’s important to note that those numbers only apply when you’re selling your home, not when you’re selling your home and buying another. If you’re selling your home and buying another at the same time, you can expect your conveyancing fees to exceed £3,500. The simple truth is that the cost goes up when you’re trying to handle two different real estate transactions at once and for good reason. There is far more to the process of conveyancing when you’re trying to buy a home than there is when you’re trying to sell a home, so be aware of the fact that you may double your fees if you’re trying to do two transactions at one time. Should you choose to use the same conveyancer for both transactions, though, you may be able to save yourself a bit of money. If you intend to do so, though, let your conveyancer know that as you search for quotes, they may give you a very different quote if you intend to do additional business with them.
How Much are Conveyancing Fees if Selling Only?
If you’re just selling your home, you can expect to pay either the average conveyancing fee of £2,000 or something even a bit less if your transaction isn’t complicated. Most conveyancers will quote you only on the fee of selling your home when you search for a quote, not the fee of selling and buying at the same time. If you intend to do that, letting your conveyancer know that you need help on both fronts is a must so you don’t get surprised when you get the bill for the two transactions combined.
What are Hidden Seller Conveyancing Fees?
One of the biggest surprises for many people who need the help of a conveyancer is that there are hidden fees after they’ve gotten a quote that says something completely different. Some of those hidden fees were likely simply things that popped up during the transaction itself. Some of them, though, should likely never appear on your bill. What’s the difference between the two? There are several extra costs no seller should have to pay. First, you may notice a PI contribution or a Professional indemnity cost, and this is a problematic fee because it could be as much as £100. This is something that should already be included in the basic fees of the conveyancer, and you shouldn’t have to pay it. You may also notice a postage, photocopying, or phone call fee. This could also cost quite a bit, typically as much as £50. It’s essentially the cost of doing business for a conveyancer, and it shouldn’t be listed in small print as an extra fee. If you’re selling internationally, there could be additional fees thanks to the cost of international phone calls and postage, but they should all be itemised. It’s also possible that you’ll see an SDLT Return Filing Fee of up to £50. This occurs because your SDLT return needs to be filled in and submitted to HMRC. As with many of the other hidden costs, you might see listed, this should be part of a conveyancer’s normal fees, as it has to happen in every single transaction. It shouldn’t be listed separately. Archive and File Storage Fees are also costs you shouldn’t be charged. They can be as much as £50, and they occur because after the transaction is complete, your conveyancer is required to hold onto your file for several years. Most conveyancers simply do this as standard practice, but some will charge extra for the service. While you absolutely want your conveyancer to hold onto your file for several years, there shouldn’t be extra costs associated with those fees. Instead, they should be providing that as a service to you.
Not all of the fees that you see listed on your bill, though, are a problem. Instead, in addition to the items listed above, you may also see a few other fees you didn’t initially expect to see, and it’s just part of selling a home. A leasehold property supplement fee, for example, happens when you’re selling a leasehold property. The conveyancer typically has to increase his or her basic fee in this case because leasehold conveyancing is far more complex. This fee can be as much as £200, as it’s extra work the conveyancer may not have originally expected to do when he or she issued the quote. Another common, and fair, fee is for official copies of the title and the lease. This fee usually isn’t much, often just as much as £12, but official copies of both leasehold and freehold titles have to be produced in the sale of any property, and it will need to be passed along to the buyer, and HMRC charges your conveyancer to get a copy of those, so that’s while you’ll often see it listed on your statement as an added charge. You could also see a fee of up to £300 for a managing agents pack. This usually only applies to leasehold sales, and this must be supplied to your buyer. It offers them quite a bit of information about the property, including the ongoing service charges, the ground rent, and the major works. This isn’t usually in the quote because the conveyancer doesn’t control the amount that your freeholder will charge for the pack of information. In addition to that fee, you may also see a leasehold management information pack with a fee of up to £500. This is only true for leasehold properties, and this comes from the managing agent of the property. It, too, contains information about fees and projects to which leaseholders are expected to contribute, and it usually includes the management company’s accounting records for the past three years. As with the leasehold management information pack, it’s not usually included in the quote because the conveyancer can’t control those costs.
Do Most Conveyancers Offer Free Quotes on the Conveyancing Cost to Sell a House?
You will typically find conveyancers who offer free quotes on the cost of selling a house when you use their services. These days, most will even give you a free quote online. The process is a fairly simple one. You fill in a few boxes on their website, then they give you a quick quote. It’s important to note, though, that the quote you get in a situation like this isn’t going to be completely accurate. The reason for this pricing change, though, is fairly simple. When you get one of those free online conveyancing quotes, you’re getting a quote based on what happens in a typical sale. The simple reality, though, is that most sales aren’t typical. Instead, all kinds of issues can crop up during the course of the sale that could create additional costs and problems for your conveyancer. As a result, he or she has to pass those costs on to you to make sure that the sale is completely legal. While there are conveyancers who charge excessive fees that they shouldn’t, the majority of the costs that you’ll hear people complain about online come from those little issues that pop up during a sale that no conveyancer can predict. As a result, you may get a fairly basic free quote during the process of trying to choose a conveyancer to handle your property sale for you, but you won’t get a comprehensive quote until you actually talk to someone. When you do talk to someone, give them as much information as possible about your situation and your home. You’ll need to let them know whether the property is a leasehold or a freehold and whether you’re currently trying to buy and sell a home at the same time. You’ll also want to let them know when the home was most recently bought or sold to help them understand just how difficult or simple it might be to locate information about the property.
Do the Average Conveyancing Fees for Selling Go Down if Buying Too?
The cost of conveyancing if selling only can be quite a bit lower than the cost of conveyancing when buying a property. The reason behind that is the fact that buying a property means so much additional work for a conveyancer. Once you hire a conveyancer when you’re buying your home, the process begins the same way as it does when you’re selling your home. Your conveyancer will first have to verify your identity. This can usually be done online. From there, your conveyancer will work to learn more about the property itself including what fixtures and fittings are included in the sale. For example, this could be carpets, appliances, wardrobes, curtains, and other items. They should also get a property information form about the home you’re buying as well as title deeds. All of those materials will come to your conveyancer, but he or she will also likely discuss them with you. From there, your conveyancer will carry out the local authority, water, environmental, and mining searches on that piece of property. These can be quite costly, but they can be fairly time-consuming as well. If any issues arise at that point, they’ll discuss them with you. It can take as long as four weeks. Your conveyancer is also required to check the mortgage offer and check in with the lender to ensure that everything is ready to go on the financing front. Additionally, if you’re buying a ho9me, your conveyancer has to check the draft contract to ensure it meets your expectations. Then he or she will arrange for a deposit and create a completion statement so you know when you can take possession of your new house. Finally, your conveyancer will prepare the transfer deed so the seller’s conveyancer can sign it and apply for the transfer of funds from the mortgage lender. On the final day, the conveyancer handles all of the necessary electronic transfers of funds. All of this time and work means a fairly costly process.
A seller’s conveyancer has a very different role. The process can be intense at the beginning, but it gets easier as it progresses, and that accounts for the lower cost of conveyancing if you are just selling your home. Initially, the conveyancer sends over quite a bit of information about the property for you to fill out. Usually, you’ll be asked to complete a TA6 form that helps the buyer learn more about the boundaries of the property and any disputes or complaints that have happened as well as more information about council tax, utilities, and sewerage. You will also have to fill out a TA 10 to help provide details about the fixtures and fittings that will be part of the sale. The TA 13 form you’ll fill out includes all of the finalisation information. Your solicitor will check over all of this paperwork as soon as you submit it, then send it on to the potential buyer. From there, he or she will draw up a draft contract, and learn what is necessary to pay off your mortgage with the bank. Finally, the contracts are exchanged, any necessary questions are answered, and you reach completion day.
If you decide to combine these two processes together, you’ll obviously still pay quite a bit more than you would if you were just selling your home, but you may actually be able to get a discount from your conveyancer because you’ll be using the same professional to carry out both transactions and in the long run, that could be a real benefit for you financially.
How Do You Compare Conveyancing Costs in the UK in 2022?
As you look for the right conveyancer, the chances are good that you’ll want to compare the various quotes from those professionals you’re considering. There are many different ways to choose a conveyancer. First, you may want to ask family and friends to recommend a professional with whom they’ve worked in the past. You could also ask your lender or an independent financial advisor for a bit of advice on who the right professional to meet your needs might be. If you’re currently working with an estate agent, it’s worth it to chat with them as well. You should also consider searching online. After you make your list, you’ll want to narrow it down a bit by whether the choices on your list are members of the Law Society of England and Wales, the Law Society of Scotland, or the Law Society’s Conveyancing Quality Scheme. They should also be a member of the Council for Licenced Conveyancers if they are not a solicitor. Once you know who is a member of a professional body, consider looking at their fees. Don’t forget to look at the total cost as well as the overall fee structure. Conveyancers charge fees in a few different ways. They may charge fixed fees. They may also charge an hourly rate. A few charge a percentage of the property price. Get a written quote from each one so you can make certain you’re comparing exactly the same services with each professional. Then find out how often they will be willing to communicate updates on the sale of your home with you. Selling a house can be an incredibly stressful process, and having a few updates from your conveyancer can make things go a lot smoother. You may even find that your professionals have online portals so you can continually see what’s happening with the sale of your home in real time. Once you have all of that information, you should have enough to make a decision. Remember, if you’re in a special situation like you’re trying to sell a house and buy one at the very same time, you’ll want to reach out and offer them more information so you know exactly what you’ll be charged at the end of the process. The last thing you need when dealing with real estate is surprise charges.