A guide to fixed fee conveyancing

If you agree to the delivery of conveyancing services on a fixed fee basis, the price plus any incurred costs and disbursements will be determined and agreed at the beginning of this legal process. Although some conveyancing solicitors still prefer to offer their services on an hourly rate basis, fixed fees are becoming more common across the industry.

Image Credit

Fixed fee conveyancing is an attractive prospect for many buyers and sellers because it allows them to budget accordingly, and mitigates the risks of being met with a costly bill at the end of an already expensive and stressful process.

When looking for your ideal conveyancing professional, it is important to ensure you understand whether they will provide you with a fixed fee quote, or whether they will proceed on an hourly basis. This information will help you to compare the services on offer from several different conveyancing experts and ensure you secure the very best value for your money.

Let’s run through the conveyancing process in a bit more detail to ensure you have all the information you need to make informed decisions based on your unique needs, circumstances and preferences.

What does fixed fee conveyancing include?

Firstly, it is important to note that not all third party costs will always be included in the fixed price you are quoted. This means it is imperative to request a written quotation, which should detail precisely what is included. In addition to helping you to compare services on a like-for-like basis, this document will explain what you are receiving in return for your money.

Image Credit

The fixed aspect of many quotes will not include any disbursements incurred on your behalf by your conveyancing solicitor. This is generally because it can be difficult to predict exactly how many conveyancing searches will be required to facilitate the smooth purchase of your property. Searches should be included with the overall quote you receive at the beginning of the process, but it is vital to remember these will often be added costs and budget accordingly.

A fixed price agreement

When you receive your quote, you should be given a fixed price agreement which will include the price of any disbursements alongside the costs of the legal services themselves. Some of these costs will be dependent on the workload required to complete each task and the time required to deliver services to the highest standards. Many conveyancing firms will also include fees for additional paperwork and photocopying.

Remember, different costs will be incurred depending on whether you are selling or buying the property.

To ensure that you are not being overcharged, here are the key elements you should expect to find on your conveyancing quote.

When selling a property:

– The basic conveyancing solicitor charge, which will vary depending on whether your property is leasehold or freehold
– A charge for copies of necessary Land Registry documents and paperwork
– A Telegraphic Transfer Fee.

When purchasing a property:

– The basic conveyancing solicitor charge
– Local Authority searches
– Drainage, coal mining, and environmental searches
Stamp Duty Land Tax
– Lawyer check fee
– Money transfer fee

These costs will vary and are dependent on the property involved, the time investment required to complete each task, and the rates of each solicitor.

The benefits of fixed fee services

In addition to making it easier to budget, you won’t be met with any hidden costs or surprise fees at the end of the process.

You should also feel assured that the services you are paying for will facilitate the smooth purchase or sale of your property. Additionally, your conveyancing professional will have a clear idea of what you expect from them in return for the fee you have agreed to pay.

Fixed fee services often feel more transparent and, as you aren’t paying for services on an hourly basis, any unforeseen issues or delays won’t see your costs rise.

The drawbacks of fixed fee services

Misunderstandings can occur if you and your conveyancing solicitor fail to maintain open channels of communication. Additionally, failing to read the small print on your initial quote can result in surprise changes that may see your costs rise.

It is important to sufficiently scrutinise all documents and ensure you are happy with the services on offer before agreeing to anything. Don’t hesitate to ask your solicitor to provide additional clarification whenever it is needed, and look carefully at the terms and conditions of your agreement.

Leave a Reply