Should I accept an offer on my home if I haven’t found one to buy?
From your prospective buyer’s standpoint, they are not going to want to wait around for you to find somewhere to move to necessarily, meaning that they might drop out of the process to look for a property that is more readily available. However, you might want to have the discussion with your estate agent as to the best way to manage this as part of the process of putting your house on the market.
It’s not always going to be easy for everyone in the chain to have everything lined up from mortgage offers, sale price agreements, solicitors, surveys and so on. Therefore, you can be honest and tell your prospective buyer that, while you’re accepting the price, you haven’t completed your part in the chain; if they are unhappy with this, your other option is to consider a short-term rental or moving in with friends temporarily to protect the sale.
With our experienced solicitors at low, fixed-fee quotes with 'No Completion, No Fee' protection, Homeward Legal is in the best position to look after your conveyancing. Call us now on 0800 038 6699 to get started.
How can we determine Stamp Duty Land Tax and what will we need to pay on a £283000 house?
Stamp Duty in Charmouth will depend on the house or flat's value. It is £8490 on a £283000 house (correct March 2013).
Can I change the purpose of use for a purchase as part of the conveyancing procedure?
Putting in a planning request to change the use of part or all of a property is a straightforward process and you can deal directly with the local authority, which authorises plans and requests. However, tying it in with a planned purchase of a property has its own problems, since you don’t yet formally own the property, and the length of time to get through the planning process (with no guarantee of success) will need to be factored into the purchase duration, which the seller may not agree to.
We would advise you to either buy the property and then put in the planning request after completion (or exchange at the very earliest), or buy a property that’s already fit for your purposes. Or you might be lucky to find a property that already has the relevant planning consents in place.
Should we choose a firm of solicitors referred by my agent?
Your Charmouth agent may suggest a law firm, however, such referrals must be compared with other local solicitors, or better-value firms found online, as an agent may decide to recommend the solicitor willing to pay the highest referral fee, not the most appropriate choice.
The home I’m buying has been empty for two years; what questions should I be asking the solicitor, the estate agent, and the surveyor?
If a home has been empty for a considerable period (such as the two years mentioned here), there’s usually a reason for it. There is estimated to be around a quarter of a million properties in the country that have been empty for more than 6 months.
The primary reason is that the owner hasn’t the funds to renovate the property, or they’ve started gutting the place and run out of money to take it further, or perhaps there’s been a significant problem (e.g. fire or flood are common instances). Most likely, these properties will come up at auction.
Your estate agent will be aware of its history if the property is on their books, so you can find out a lot from them, the council will have an empty property officer, and the Land Registry will have information on the deeds. As far as the solicitor is concerned, they will establish the position on the property as part of the conveyancing, while the surveyor will have experience of checking out such properties, with the advice that you order a Building Survey (the most detailed of the options) to check out its structural integrity. Note that mortgage lenders will be more reluctant to offer a loan on such homes.
Ultimately, the ball is in your court and, if you want to pursue buying such a property, you need to be prepared to do the research, which can take up a lot of time.
The moving process can be bewildering and stressful. Let Homeward Legal look after the legal side of things for you and we'll guide you through the process from start to end. Call 0800 038 6699 to find out more.
Will a property report compiled by the solicitor in Charmouth give details about the relevant rates of council tax for a Band G maisonette prior to exchange of contracts?
The property solicitor will contact the West Dorset local authority to ascertain the latest council tax rates, which should then be included in the conveyancer's title report. Council tax charges for Charmouth are published on the West Dorset council website. At the time of authoring (08 December 2012) rates are as follows:
- Band A - £1,069.00
- Band B - £1,247.00
- Band C - £1,425.00
- Band D - £1,604.00
- Band E - £1,960.00
- Band F - £2,316.00
- Band G - £2,673.00
- Band H - £3,207.00
A right of way on the property I’m buying is redundant, but how do I get it removed from the deeds and registry?
A right of way through the grounds of a property is probably an inheritance before other building in the vicinity occurred that has since made the passage through redundant.
But, while having the right of way registered with the deeds means that feasibly someone could insist that they use it (as their public right), but, if they can’t access where the right of way originally led, it makes it a pointless activity.
It’s so unlikely that anyone will want to do this that you have to weigh up the cost of the legal process to get the right of way officially removed against not proceeding. However, if you are at all worried, talk to your solicitor so that it can be investigated further as part of the conveyancing, at which point they can guide you on the appropriate action and the associated costs (this will be in addition to the standard fees for the conveyancing and your solicitor will advise of this additional cost).
Homeward Legal's solicitors provide transparent quotes, detailing what is included in the fees and disbursements and will help with estimates for additional legal work. So, now is the best time to get your conveyancing under way on 0800 038 6699.
Do I have to be present at viewings?
No, you don’t. It used to be the case that estate agencies were happy to leave the homeowner to show prospective buyers around. However, this has now been dispensed with because they won’t necessarily have the property skills and experience of dealing with and selling to a buyer. Therefore, the preference is usually that you should not be present in the home at all, although this can obviously be difficult with infirmity, working from home, and childcare.
The best option is to discuss this with the estate agent when you appoint them, so that you are aware of their expectations for each viewing, and they will be able to work around you if you have to be present in the home. Whether you are present or not, you should still take care not to be too messy and tidy up as much as possible prior to the viewing appointment, so that good impressions are maintained.
Our fixed fees and the 'No Completion, No Fee' guarantee alongside our results-focused solicitors mean that Homeward Legal is your best choice for the conveyancing. Find out more on 0800 038 6699.