Fonseca Law Solicitors


Tel: 01495 303124

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Fees for the Purchase of a Residential Property

Our fees cover all of the work required to complete a usual purchase transaction, including review and investigation of the title to the purchase property, requesting and reviewing the searches of the property, reporting to you on our findings completing the transaction, registering your ownership at the Land Registry and dealing with the payment of Stamp Duty Land Tax (Stamp Duty) if the property is in England, or Land Transaction Tax (Land Tax) if the property you wish to buy is in Wales.


Disbursements are costs related to your matter that are payable to third parties. We handle the payment of the disbursements on your behalf to ensure a smoother process. Disbursements include the following (including VAT):

  • Anti-Money Laundering ID Search Fee (each): £3.60
  • Searches (local, drainage & environmental) Personal searches only: £139.40 (official searches are dependent on the location of the property and will cost more.
  • Bankruptcy Search Fee (per name): £2.00
  • Land Registry Search Fee (per title): £3.00
  • Bank Fee (per transfer): £35.00
  • Stamp Duty Land Tax or Land Transaction Tax (Please see below)
    Stamp Duty Submission fee (SDLT only): £12.00
  • Land Registry Registration Fee (See below. Dependent upon Value/Price of Property)
    Land Charges Search Fee (unregistered property) (per name): £2.00
  • Leasehold Disbursements (approx)
    • Notice of Transfer / Mortgage Fee: £100.00 – £200.00
    • Deed of Covenant Fee: £100.00 – £250.00
    • Certificate of Compliance Fee: £100.00 – £200.00

Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) (for English properties) or Land Transaction Tax (LTT) (for Welsh properties)

The amount of Tax that you pay on Completion depends on the purchase price of your property and how many properties/interest in properties each buyer will have at the end of the day of completion of the purchase.

HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) collect SDLT and Welsh Revenue Authority (WRA) collect LTT.

We shall pay on completion to HMRC or WRA, as applicable, the Tax accordingly to our calculations based on the information you supply to us. Please note that it is your responsibility to ensure that the correct amount of tax is being paid. Different tax rates apply to English and Welsh properties. You may also be entitled to discounted rates i.e. first time buyer discount in England only. If you wish for clarity or have any queries on the level of Tax, you should consult with a Tax Expert/Adviser in advance of exchange of contracts. The following links provide additional information relating to the relevant tax rates for your property:

Land Registry Registration Fee

After completion of your purchase, we shall register your ownership and any mortgage at Land Registry.

The fee payable to Land Registry is applied on a sliding scale depending on the purchase price. Where the application is of a nature that can be submitted to Land Registry electronically, the fee will be reduced. Where possible we will always attempt to use the electronic facility but unregistered titles and transfer of parts (new builds) will attract the higher rate.

The current registration rates are as follows:

Value or amount Apply by post Apply using the portal or Business Gateway,
for transfers or surrenders which affect
the whole of a registered title
0 to £80,000 £40 £20
£80,001 to £100,000 £80 £40
£100,001 to £200,000 £190 £95
£200,001 to £500,000 £270 £135
£500,001 to £1,000,000 £540 £270
£1,000,001 and over £910 £455

Leasehold Properties

If your Property is leasehold, its Lease will set out whether any additional charges apply. When the seller’s provide the Freeholder and/or Management Pack this will contain additional information regarding costs to be paid to them to allow the registration of your property.

Whilst we have provided an estimate of the costs, please note that they vary depending on the property and can be significantly less or significantly more than our estimates above.

Be aware that Ground Rent and Service Charges will also be payable for the Property during your ownership as per the terms of the Lease. We shall confirm the costs of the same upon receipt of the Lease and Freeholder/Management Company Sale Pack.

How long will my property purchase take?

The length of time it will take from your offer being accepted until you collect the keys to the property, and move into your new house if applicable, will depend on a number of factors. The average process takes 10 – 12 weeks.

It can be shorter or longer, depending on factors such as, but by no means exclusively, the number of parties in the chain and their respective circumstances, if the property is Leasehold or requires a lease extension, there be a title defect, requirement of mortgage funding, surveys, searches, new builds. We shall endeavour to keep you apprised during the process.

Key stages of the process

Whilst the precise stages involved in a purchase transaction can vary accordingly to the circumstances of each transaction, the key stages of the process are as follows (please note the weekly timeline is a guide only):

Instructions (Weeks 1- 2)

  • We receive your instructions to act on your behalf;
  • Our Client Care Pack is sent out to you, explaining our Costs, Terms of Business, advising on joint ownership (if applicable), for you to consider, sign and return along with initial monies on account;
  • We obtain from you evidence of source of funds and your proof of identity as part of our anti-money laundering checks;
  • We carry out conflict of interest checks against all parties to the transaction;
  • We receive Sales Particulars from the Estate Agents (if involved) and request Contract papers from the Seller’s solicitors.

Investigation of Title (Weeks 2-6)

  • We receive Contract papers from the Seller’s Solicitors (including Freeholder/Management Company Sales Pack if Leasehold), review the same and report to you;
  • We raise necessary enquiries (if any) with the Seller's Solicitor, make any necessary amendments to the contract documentation and agree these with the seller’s Solicitor, review their replies once received and report to you on the same;
  • We order relevant searches, report to you on the results once received and raise any necessary additional enquiries with the Seller’s Solicitors;
  • We check that finances are in place to fund purchase i.e. cash or mortgage
  • We forward to you all documentation for signature and return
  • If a mortgage is required, upon receipt of our copy Offer from your Lender, we review the same, report to you, satisfy the Lender’s requirements and forward the Mortgage Deed to you for signature and return.

Pre-Exchange – Exchange of Contracts (Week 6-10)

  • Once Title, Searches and Mortgage (if any) are satisfactory and if you are happy to proceed we agree with the Seller (and others in the chain if any) a Completion Date (date from which you own the property);
  • We provide you with our Completion Statement detailing the balance required from you to complete (including the Deposit) and await receipt of the same from you in cleared funds;
  • We carry out our pre-completion searches, request mortgage funds (if any) and await from you your arranged Building Insurance Policy Schedule (unless Leasehold);
  • After obtaining your Authority to Exchange and the Deposit, we exchange Contracts with the Seller’s Solicitors (legally binding both Buyer and Seller to the Contract and to complete on the agreed Completion Day) and notify you that this has happened.

Post-Exchange – Completion (Weeks 10-12)

  • We receive the Seller’s Solicitors replies to Completion Information and carry out checks against their bank details;
  • We await receipt of mortgage funds from your Lender (and yourself, if not provided in full already);
  • On Completion Day, the purchase monies are sent to the Seller’s Solicitors. Once received, they confirm to us and the estate agents that the keys can be released to you and the property is yours

Post Completion

  • We arrange for the payment of Stamp Duty Land Tax/Land Transaction Tax (if any);
  • If Leasehold, we submit the necessary notices, payments and deeds to the Freeholder/Management Company;
  • We apply to register your ownership of the property at Land Registry;
  • We forward to you evidence of your ownership once received from Land Registry along with any deeds and other documents received from the Seller's Solicitors.
  • Once registration is complete we notify you and your lender.