The property chain and its related fees
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What fees are related to the property chain?
Any fees related to buying a house, such as the deposit, stamp duty, legal fees, surveyors fees, valuation fees. Also any fees related to selling a house, like EPC costs, removal costs, and conveyancing.
The property chain can be an expensive process so ensuring you know all the related fees is a must. This post will go through the main fees you may encounter.
Fees Related to Buying a House:
- The deposit- This is the money you pay towards the price of your new house and averages around 5-20% of its sale price. After paying the deposit, you are legally bound to the deal. If you pull out, you lose your deposit.
- Stamp Duty Tax- A government-enforced tax paid on homes costing over £125,000. The current rate is 1% of the price up to £250,000, 3% from £250,000-500,000 and 4% above this.
- Valuation Fee- If you need to take out a mortgage, the lender will determine the property’s value, and then how much to lend you. This can cost anywhere between £150-1500 depending on its value, though some lenders may not charge.
- Surveyor’s Fee- Before you purchase a house, it is strongly advised you have a surveyor thoroughly look over it in case of any issues or damages that could be missed by the untrained eye. This is important, as anything not addressed before contracts are signed then becomes the buyers’ responsibility and repairs could cost a fortune. Surveys can cost anywhere between £250-1000+ depending on the type you choose. For example, a homebuyer’s survey costs approximately £250-400 and should detect any serious defects.
- Legal Fees- You will need a solicitor or conveyor to conduct the legal work when buying and selling your houses. This usually costs £850-1500. An additional £300 is charged for research into the local area, to discover local plans or problems that could hinder your new house.
- Electronic Transfer Fee- This covers the mortgage lender’s cost of sending the mortgage money from the lender to the solicitor.
- Land Registry Document Fee- This covers Land Registry costs (around £6-£12) for creating authenticated copies of your deed.
- Land Registration Fee- When the sale is complete, you will be registered as owners of your new home with the Land Registry. This fee covers the related work and is approximately £220.
- Local Authority Search Fee- This search will discover whether there is anything unfavourable recorded about your new home with the local council. Fees can reach up to £300.
- Mortgage Administration Fee- A processing cost and price varies depending on the price of the mortgage.
- Mortgage- This should be arranged as soon as possible, whether that’s before you find a house you want to buy or as soon after your bid on the house is accepted. Mortgages can be of various types including tracker, fixed or discounted, and the HomeOwners Alliance provide details on all of these. How much you should pay, what you can afford and further details on the process can be found here.
Fees Related to Selling a House:
- Estate Agent’s Fee- This is decided when the house is put on the market and is usually 1-3% of the sale value, with an additional 20% VAT.
- Removal Costs- Costing around £300-£600, though you can hire a removal van and do this yourself at a reduced cost.
- Energy Performance Certificate (EPC)- This is a certificate showing how energy efficient your home is. The property will be given a grade from A to G, with A being the most efficient. You must have one of these before selling your home and you’ll need to have (at the very least) ordered one before putting your house on the market. These usually cost £50-120.
- Conveyancing Fee- A conveyancer or solicitor will deal with the legal side of selling your home. They may charge either a flat fee or ask for a value percentage of the property. Fees range from £500-£1500.
A Fee to Consider:
- Buildings Insurance- When contracts have been exchanged, and you have purchased your new home, you become responsible for it and all risk lies with you. Building Insurance covers unforeseen circumstances such as damage from floods, fires, storms and vandalism. Not having this could result in you paying out thousands of pounds for repairs, or potentially losing the house altogether. Premiums range in price and cover and comparison sites are usually the best place to start.
Costs to Bear in Mind:
- Maintenance- The average repair bill for a new home is £5,750, therefore finding a home with as few issues as possible is essential.
- Running costs- These include utilities (gas, electricity and water) and broadband packages.
The property chain is an expensive process with fees totalling in the thousands. Proper planning and research should go into all unavoidable fees so that your money is not wasted.
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