What are the solicitor’s fees for buying or selling a property?
28th August 2014

The solicitors fees for buying or selling a property vary depending on the following key principles:

1. How much is the property being sold or purchased for?
2. Is the property leasehold or freehold?

Dealing with each of these matters individually:

How much is the property being sold or purchased for?
We need to ask this information, as the purchase or sale price does make a difference to our quotation.

All solicitors in England and Wales need to carry out a compulsory layer of Professional Indemnity Insurance, also known as Solicitors PII.

The higher the sale or purchase price, then the higher our quote would be, as we are taking an increased claims risk on our PII insurance policy.

The level of due diligence which therefore needs to be applied to higher value properties is at a higher level than normal.

This normally dictates that a more senior fee earner within PLS Solicitors deals with the file. Therefore the senior fee earner will have a higher charge out rate and once again the fee quoted would therefore be higher.

Is the property leasehold or freehold?
Freehold properties tend to be easier to deal with than the purchase or sale of leasehold properties.

Leasehold properties require more time as there is normally a management company involved, also most lenders won’t lend on a lease, which has less than 60 years left of the lease term left to run.

We therefore need to raise enquiries with the managing agents and check the lease thoroughly to check matters such as:

– Has the ground rent been paid up to date.
– Has the service charge been paid up to date.
– Who insures the property and can we have copies of the buildings insurance details.
– Whether any service charge retentions are needed for potential service charge balancing charges.
– Whether or not a deed of covenant with the management company is needed?
– To ensure the shares in the management company (if applicable are transferred across).

A normal residential lease normally goes into circa 50 pages, which we need to review and report on.

We therefore tend to charge a leasehold supplement fee for dealing with a leasehold property.

As you can see from the above, the job of the purchasers solicitor on a leasehold property is more stringent.

Similarly on a sale the job of the selling solicitor is also difficult, as normally the sellers solicitor has to liaise with both the management company to obtain the replies to the management company enquiries and any further enquiries the purchasers solicitors wish to raise following receipt of those enquiries, and also the freeholder to obtain any required deeds of consents.

Please feel free to email us for a competitive quote on info@pls-solicitors.co.uk or call us on 0844 8111 410.

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