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Our Top Tips On Legal Fees When Selling A House

Selling your house can be a tricky time. There always seems to be so much to think about and at times, even with the best planning, there are particular parts of the process or costs that might not be taken into consideration. Unfortunately, this may mean that you can face legal fees and other associated costs that you have not budgeted for.

Silverman Black is always keen to help our customers throughout the entire buying or selling process. Therefore, we have put together some information on legal fees when selling a house, so that you can be prepared for any of those unexpected costs that may be thrown at you.

Using An Estate Agent

The first step that most people will take when selling a property is getting a reputable estate agent. Although it is possible to sell your property privately, it isn’t easy and you can never be sure if you are being offered the right price. Our advice with estate agents is not to focus on price, but on the experience they have in your local area. Most estate agents offer a similar fee, which is usually based on a percentage of sale, but remember that cheap should flag up warnings!

Your estate agent will carryout a valuation of your property, based on their knowledge of other properties they have sold in the area. They will then list your property in it’s best light and handle all the viewings and communication with potential buyers. If you are based around the Carshalton, Surrey or Sutton areas, Silverman Black is your best choice for a local estate agent. We have extensive knowledge and experience of selling properties in the local area, so we know what it takes to get you the best price in the current market conditions. You can even request a property valuation easily online!

Getting A Solicitor

If you are selling a property, then you will require a solicitor to handle a variety of legal aspects. They will be responsible for overseeing the signing of the contracts between you and your buyer and act as the go between during the consultation and sale process. Your estate agent can put you in touch with a recommended solicitor and their legal stages will typically include:

  • Agreement of sale – obtaining title deeds, prepare legal information and contract of sale, request a settlement figure for your mortgage and negotiate a completion date with your buyer’s lawyer.
  • Exchange of contracts – receive a deposit from your buyer’s lawyer, organise final accounts and prepare a final settlement, collect any remaining balance and approve the deed of transfer.
  • Completion – pay off the mortgage and notify the Land Registry, hand over the deeds and send any balance money to you.

It is difficult to state exactly how much your solicitor will charge, as the final amount will depend on how much work has to be done.  It is best to try and get estimates from a range of solicitors before you decide which one to use. Remember, cheaper solicitors may be lower for a reason! To give you a rough idea when setting a budget, a solicitor may possibly charge between £400 and £750 for properties worth up to £100,000 and anywhere from £750 to over £1,000 for more expensive properties.

Other Fees To Be Aware Of

Energy performance certificates (EPCs) - when selling a home you will have to provide potential buyers with an ‘energy performance certificate’ for the property. An energy performance certificate gives information about the energy efficiency of a property from grades A to G - A being the most energy efficient and G the least. Accredited domestic energy assessors can conduct EPCs for you, which can be arranged through your estate agent. You can expect to pay somewhere between £50 and £120 for having this done.

Leasehold Pack – if the property you are selling is leasehold, you may have to provide your buyers with a leasehold pack. Because you will normally have a management company looking after the communal areas of the property and its insurance, there will be various documents and accounts covering service payments and ground rent. This pack includes everything related to the lease of the property and there will usually be a charge from your solicitor for arranging this on your behalf. Like most costs, this can vary depending on the costs set by your management company, but you can usually estimate this being between £200 to £250.

How We Can Help

Selling your property needn’t be difficult or full of unexpected costs. With some careful planning and a spot of guidance from experts like Silverman Black, you can be fully informed on what to expect at every stage of the process.  We all know that a little information can easily make all the difference to a stressful time.

So, if you are looking to sell your property, then why not get in touch with us today to see how we can help to make the process a simpler one. 

01/06/16 By Simon Walsh
Tags: Selling Advice
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