Residential Property 


Helping You Move House Without a Hitch

We appreciate that buying or selling a home is one of life’s most significant events. We work hard to ensure your transaction runs as smoothly as possible; and our aim is to complete your sale or purchase efficiently, with minimal stress, and see you settled in your new home as soon as possible.  
We have one of the most highly qualified residential conveyancing teams in the region with meticulous attention to detail and a focus on delivering high levels of client service. In particular we place an emphasis on our accessibility for you to contact us with queries or concerns as your matter proceeds.

Conveyancing Fee Guidance for Clients

Hartlaw LLP has provided conveyancing services to its clients since 1932.  We have an unrivalled knowledge of the housing stock of the Wetherby area.  This guidance is intended to assist clients in understanding our work in this area and the charges made for it.  As the service which we provide depends on the level and complexity of that work we do not publish a simple list of charges but, as soon as we have sufficient information regarding the service which you require, we will provide a fixed fee quotation from which we will not vary unless you change your instructions or the level and nature of the work differs materially.


Matt Seldon LLB, Solicitor  
Matt is the head of Hartlaw LLP’s Property Team and has almost 20 years’ experience in this work.  He qualified as a solicitor in 2003 and has since dealt with a large number of property transactions, many of them extremely complex.  He is a Senior Partner at Hartlaw.  Matt’s hourly charging rate is £265.
Rebecca Smith LLB, Solicitor 
Rebecca is also a Partner in Hartlaw.  She qualified in 2004 and deals with all aspects of commercial and residential property.  Rebecca’s hourly charging rate is £265.

Laura Kingsberry 
Laura is also a Legal Executive with over 12 years’ experience of property transactions.  Laura’s hourly charging rate is £220.
Nick Dyson LLB, Solicitor and Notary Public 
Nick assists members of the Property Department in areas such as planning and taxation.  He is a Notary Public which enables him to deal with certain aspects of foreign property transactions.  He qualified in 1972 and has been dealing with property work for over 40 years.  Nick’s hourly charging rate is £265.
All of the Hartlaw LLP Property Team attend regular training sessions to keep up to date with changes in law and practice.  For speed and efficiency Hartlaw uses the latest technology including the ALB case management system.
The fee earners in the department are supported by five secretaries, Lorna, Emma, Jayne, Chloe and Samantha, all of whom are trained and experienced in property matters and the use of the computer system.
This depends on a number of factors but the average housing transaction takes between three and twelve weeks from start to finish.
It can be quicker or slower depending on the speed at which the parties involved wish to proceed, any financial arrangements or problem areas.  For example, if you are buying a leasehold property that requires an extension of the Lease this can take significantly longer probably between 3 and 6 months.
The typical stages in the process of purchasing a new home vary according to circumstances but here is an example of some key stages that may apply:-
  • Taking instructions and providing you with initial advice.
  • Checking that your finances are in place.
  • Receiving and advising on contract documents.
  • Carrying out searches.
  • Obtaining any further planning documentation that is required.
  • Making any necessary enquiries of the seller’s solicitors.
  • Giving you advice on all documents and information received.
  • Considering the conditions of the mortgage and discussing them with you.
  • Obtaining your signature to the contract and any other documents.
  • Agreeing a completion date (which is the date from which you will own the property).
  • Exchanging contracts and notifying you that this has happened.
  • Arranging for all monies needed to be received from a lender and you.
  • Completing the purchase.
  • Dealing with the payment of Stamp Duty Land Tax, and,
  • Applying to the Land Registry to register your title.
These are items paid out on your behalf to third parties to cover such things as search fees, indemnity insurances, Land Registry fees and charges for the electronic transfer of money.  We handle the payment of all such expenses/disbursements on your behalf to ensure a smoother conveyancing process.
SDLT is payable by the purchaser of the property.  You can calculate the amount that you must pay by using HMRC’s website (
VAT is payable on Hartlaw’s fees and on most of the expenses/disbursements paid on your behalf but not the Land Registry fee.
There are some factors which would typically increase the cost of the service which we provide.  For example:-
  • If the legal title is defective or part of the property is unregistered.
  • If we discover that planning consent or building regulation approval has not been obtained, or,
  • If crucial documents are not available.
Usually we can resolve those issues by further research or the provision of indemnity insurance (which involves the payment of a single premium to compensate you for your loss if difficulties should arise).
Straightforward sale at £250,000.00.
This example assumes that the property is fully registered with absolute title and that there are no unusual arrangements or defects requiring insurance and that the sale is dealt with by one of our legal executives taking around 3 hours.
  • Hartlaw Legal fees                              £650.00 (+ VAT)
  • Expenses/disbursements (approx.)     £6.00 (may be VATable)
  • Money transfer fee                              £30.00 (+ VAT)
  • Archiving fee                                       £10.00 (+ VAT)
Total (approx):                                                £698.00
Straightforward purchase of property for £500,000.00 with building society mortgage
In this example a little more work is required because there is a mortgage which will be subject to detailed conditions.  It is our standard practice to investigate planning and building regulation issues, such things as rights of way and restrictive covenants, as well as overriding interests which can be quite complex.  We also obtain and report to you on a number of searches including the local search (enquiries of the local authority regarding their records for the property), environmental search (which covers such things as flooding, radon gas and contaminated land), title searches, etc.  If the seller is a company we will also request a company search.  This example assumes that the transaction is reasonably straightforward and could be carried out by a solicitor or legal executive in about 5 hours.
  • Hartlaw Legal fees                              £950.00 (+ VAT)
  • Search fees (approx.)                         £250.00 (inc VAT)
  • Money transfer fee                              £30.00 (+ VAT)
  • Archiving fee                                       £10.00 (+ VAT)
  • Land Registry fee                                £135.00 (no VAT)
  • SDLT Return fee                                 £10.00 (+ VAT)
Total (approx):                                                £1387.00
Complex property purchase for £750,000.00 with mortgage from secondary lender
This example assumes that the purchase involves a number of issues, such as defective title and poor search results requiring a great deal of additional work by our solicitors.  The fees will depend in large part on the amount of time spent to achieve a successful transaction but typically might be as follows based on around 10 hours of fee earner time:-
  • Hartlaw Legal fee                                £2000.00 (+ VAT)
  • Search fees (approx)                          £250.00 (inc VAT)
  • Money transfer fee                              £30.00 (+ VAT)
  • Archiving fee                                       £10.00 (+ VAT)
  • Land Registry fee                                £270.00 (no VAT)
  • SDLT Return fee                                 £10.00 (+ VAT)
Total (approx):                                                £2572.00
Purchase of flat leasehold of £150,000.00
Leaseholds always involve more work than freeholds.  This is because additional checks need to be carried out on the freeholder and in respect of the terms of the Lease, which can be lengthy and complicated.  Typically there may be a separate management company who will charge a fee for providing information regarding such things as maintenance of the property, and insurance.  This example assumes a fairly normal leasehold purchase handled by either a legal executive or solicitor taking approximately 4 hours:-
  • Hartlaw Legal fees                                          £700.00 (+ VAT)
  • Search fees (approx)                                      £250.00 (inc VAT)
  • Management Company’s Charges (approx)   £100.00 (+ VAT)
  • Money transfer fee                                          £30.00 (+ VAT)
  • Archiving fee                                                   £10.00 (+ VAT)
  • Land Registry fee                                            £95.00 (no VAT)
Total:                                                               £1187.00
Equity release
Sometimes referred to as “lifetime mortgages” equity release usually involves an elderly client raising capital or income from his or her home.  We deal only with accredited providers but even so their requirements can be quite extensive and at least as searching as the work required to sell the property.  This example assumes that a couple aged over 75 take a lifetime mortgage on their home worth £500,000 to raise £200,000 and that the fee earner takes around 4 or 5 hours to deal with it:-
  • Hartlaw Legal fee                                £750.00 (+ VAT)
  • Search fees (approx)                          £250.00 (inc VAT)
  • Money transfer fee                              £30.00 (+ VAT)
  • Archiving fee                                       £10.00 (+ VAT)
  • Land Registry fee                                £95.00 (no VAT)
Total:                                                   £1137.00
Transfer of equity and remortgage
This may occur where one of two or more joint owners wishes to cash in his or her share in a property perhaps on divorce.  Typically it involves the release of one person from his or her obligations to the bank or building society who hold the mortgage on the property, and, sometimes, a new mortgage to fund the purchase of the share of the outgoing owner on property valued at £150,000.00. Time estimated at 4 or 5 hours.
  • Hartlaw Legal fee                                £700.00 (+VAT)
  • Search fees (approx)                          £250.00 (inc VAT)
  • Money transfer fee                              £30.00 (+ VAT)
  • Archiving fee                                       £10.00 (+ VAT)
  • Land Registry fee                                £95.00 (no VAT)
Total:                                                   £1087.00
Fixed fee quotations
Although this guide does not provide a table of precise charges we hope that it explains to you how these will be calculated.  We will of course be delighted to provide a fixed fee quotation as soon as you inform us of the work which you require.
If you are buying or selling your home, please contact one of our team to see how we can help or contact us on 01937 547000.

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