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Conveyancing in Durham Q & As

You will need a solicitor to handle legal work for your move, if you are buying or selling a house in Durham.

The solicitors on Homeward Legal's panel have years of conveyancing experience in Durham and all over the county. Our highly proactive approach means we complete the transaction faster than other firms.

Transport and public service information if you’re buying or selling residential property in Durham

  • By road: Durham is served by the A1M and A167.
  • By rail: The nearest train station is Durham.
  • By air: Durham is served by two airports, with Durham Tees Valley Airport being 8 miles from the city and Newcastle International Airport at 24 miles.
  • Hospital: University Hospital of North Durham, North Road, Durham, DH1 5TW.
  • Council: Durham County Council (www.durham.gov.uk).
  • Attractions: Durham Cathedral, Durham Castle, Diggerland, Durham University Botanic Garden, Finchale Priory, and Durham Museum and Heritage Centre.

I am looking for a cheap solicitor to own property. How do we get a quote?

This point affects many buyers and sellers who opted for a very cheap quote, only to be stung later in the conveyancing process. Many solicitors purport to offer cheap conveyancing, but extra costs will be found in the terms that unknowing buyers and sellers have not reviewed. The disbursements to be paid should be included on a quote At Homeward Legal, we never hide any costs, and our quotes offer a clear statement of your legal fees for a standard conveyancing transaction. Try our quote calculator, or call our team of conveyancing experts on 0800 038 6699 to discuss your needs.

I am purchasing a 1950s investment flat within a conservation area in Durham, but how do I find out details relating to the state of repair of the conservation area?

Conservation areas are designated by the local County Durham planning authority, who maintain conservation area concerns from what can be demolished, through what can be built or extended, to the hindrance of neglected buildings. English Heritage, a government body, have put together records of the state of repair of conservation areas, so it would be worth checking out their website.

Our purchase will complete in the next few weeks on a three-bedroom house in Durham. How will the Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) rates be assessed?

The SDLT rate applied to your Durham house will depend on the price at which you bought it for. SDLT is triggered once the purchase price goes over £125,000. An example of the duty owed would a charge of £1,419 on a property bought for £195,950 (information retrieved on 10 February 2017). Note that the government’s budgeting and housing policies may change the rate or the trigger value. You might wish to use a stamp duty calculator like the one at www.stampdutycalculator.org.uk.

Which Durham areas are eligible for stamp duty relief?

The government’s disadvantaged area relief aid in Durham expired in April 2013 and is no longer available.

Are pre-completion searches disbursements or fees?

On the quotes for some legal firms, it may be unclear whether an itemised charge is a fee or a disbursement. The charges for any search are disbursements and not fees, and this expense is passed on to the buyer at cost. At Homeward Legal, our straightforward approach to detailing the conveyancing quote makes the distinction completely clear. Call our skilled conveyancing team on 0800 038 6699 to arrange a fixed-fee quote, backed up by our ‘No Move, No Fee’ guarantee.

I want to exchange on the legal work on a maisonette in Durham in under 30 days. Are Homeward Legal very fast solicitors?

Our property lawyers at Homeward Legal have a thoroughly efficient and proactive methodology to completing the conveyancing work to suit a client’s desired timeframe. Our solicitors approach is to employ new HMRC and Land Registry integrated computer systems. We always look after you and your interests, because your carefully selected property lawyer is trained to communicate by phone and email with the total property chain and managing agents, rather than relying on the more traditional methods such as letter-writing and trusting the post, to fulfil a fast completion. Use Homeward Legal’s quote calculator or give our expert team a call on 0800 038 6699 to organise a fixed-fee quote reinforced with our cast-iron ‘No Move, No Fee’ guarantee.

What will the searches cost for the purchase of a flat in the centre of Durham?

With a Homeward Legal solicitor working for you, you will be expected to pay at most £249 for a standard set of searches. Searches are paid to a third party, and will not be included in a quote for the solicitor's fees but highlighted as disbursements.

Having read about the extensive flooding in Sept 2012 in North East England I am thinking that flood searches aren't sufficient?

When you instruct your conveyancing solicitor, they will initiate a set of standard searches. The environmental search includes the assessment of the risk of flooding at your Durham house. If the flood risk is deemed significant enough, a more in-depth search at Landmark will be requested. Property purchasers sometimes speak to a future neighbour for added assurance if they are still concerned about the level of risk. Or you could talk to a flood damage expert such as a builder.

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