How To Manage Conveyancing Costs And Fees Wisely

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Conveyancing is the legal transfer of property ownership from seller to buyer. It involves significant administrative work, for which conveyancers charge fees averaging £850-£1500 depending on property value. With both buyers and sellers requiring conveyancing when transacting, these costs add up. This guide covers strategies UK home movers can employ to manage conveyancing fees smartly, without skimping on essential legal protections or quality.

Understand What Conveyancing Entails

Knowing what conveyancing encompasses provides context on where fees originate. In a nutshell, conveyancers handle, officially recording the property’s change of ownership legally, navigating legal property ownership complexities, conducting local authority and environmental searches, drafting contracts and transfer deeds, facilitating mortgage processes, preparing documents for property registration, liaising between all parties to coordinate the transaction and ensuring completion of the purchase or sale financially. Extensive administrative work underpins the conveyancing process that buyers and sellers depend upon for sound legal transfers.

Compare Quotes From 5+ Conveyancers

Just like varying estate agent fees, conveyancing fees differ significantly between providers. Compare quotes from at least 5 conveyancers to determine competitive pricing for your area and property specifics. Get written quotes capturing all projected fees to compare apples to apples.

Scrutinise Fee Breakdowns Closely

Ask conveyancers to provide a detailed breakdown of their fee structure, rather than a large lump sum quote. Break it down by specific tasks like land registry registration, telegraphic transfers, disbursements, et cetera. This helps spot inflated costs for any components compared to other solicitors. Also, clarify what specific disbursements for searches are included versus charged extra. Leave no ambiguities in what service fees cover.

Question What is Excluded From Quotes

Equally important is what additional costs are excluded or considered extras on top of base conveyancing fees. Avoid conveyancers with overly vague quotes and lots of exclusions you may still be charged for.

Check Reduced Rates for Leasehold Sales

For leasehold properties, base conveyancing fees may be lower compared to freehold sales in the same area. This is because leaseholds require less extensive legal work related to title deeds and transfers. However, additional leaseholder charges may offset savings. Confirm if your conveyancer reduces fees for leaseholds, as many still quote standard freehold rates.

Look for Referral Discounts From Agents

Many conveyancers offer discounts if you are referred by an estate agent they work closely with. This rewards agents for referrals while giving clients 5-15% off. Before choosing a random firm, ask your estate agent if they partner with conveyancers offering referral savings. Signing with their preferred partner nets an automatic discount.

See If Will Services Are Included

Some property solicitors bundle writing services along with conveyancing as a package deal for a small premium. Given that, many look to update their wills when moving, bundling these services with conveyancing into a single fee can offer nice savings versus paying for wills separately. Check if firms you are comparing offer will-writing add-ons.

Query About Any Available Payment Plans

Most solicitors require at least 50% of conveyancing fees upfront when engagement terms are signed, with the balance due at completion. However, some may allow payment plans to spread fees over 3-4 instalments during the transaction rather than two big lump sums. If cash flow is tight, don’t hesitate to ask conveyancers if they offer any leeway on payment timelines.

Consider DIY Conveyancing To Save Costs

Those comfortable handling administrative tasks themselves can look into DIY conveyancing to save on solicitor fees. DIY conveyancing involves navigating the legal process with the help of low-cost online templates and tools without formal representation. However, DIY conveyance is only advisable for very straightforward sales with no ownership complexities. For anything complicated, professional assistance is still recommended.

Compare Conveyancer vs. Licenced Conveyancer

In some cases using a licenced conveyancer rather than a solicitor can reduce fees moderately while still receiving qualified legal assistance. Licenced conveyancers focus exclusively on conveyancing, unlike solicitors who handle a range of legal matters. Compare rates between the two as licenced conveyancers aim to offer more affordable residential property conveyancing. Just ensure they specialise in home purchases rather than purely commercial work.


When buying or selling a property, conveyancing is an important process that cannot be avoided. Conveyancing refers to the legal transfer of property ownership from one party to another. It involves extensive paperwork, legal checks and liaison between estate agents, buyers, sellers and mortgage lenders. Conveyancing costs can eat into property transaction budgets significantly if not managed smartly. But following tactics like comparing quotes extensively, bundling will services, checking for referral discounts, negotiating payment plans and exploring DIY conveyancing allows home movers to control this major fee category wisely. A bit of research and proactivity makes conveyancing more affordable without sacrificing the legal protection that a solicitor provides through the conveyancing process. By understanding what does conveyancing mean, home buyers and sellers can reduce this major transaction cost.

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