North Star Law residential property team: fees and other costs

Fixed fees and hourly rates

We will usually agree a fixed fee with you to assist with residential property sale and purchases – see below.

In some circumstances we will charge an hourly rate and in such instances the costs are:

  • property solicitors  £350 per hour (+ vat)
  • trainees  £200 per hour (+ vat)
  • paralegals £100 per hour (+vat)

All the property solicitors at North Star Law Ltd have at least 10 years experience.

When we are instructed on an hourly rate bases we try to give you a full estimate before you agree to instruct us. Our fixed fees are shown in the following fee table:

 

Assignment Fee
Purchase of freehold/leasehold 0.2% – 0.5% of sale price with a minimum fee of £1,500
Sale of freehold/leasehold 0.2% – 0.5% of sale price with a minimum fee of £1,500
Mortgage at the time of purchase 0.05% – 0.2% of purchase price with a minimum fee of £500

 

All our costs are exclusive of Vat and disbursements

Abortive work costs

These are calculated on the costs of the time expended based on the above hourly rates.

What a lower end fixed fee covers

Our fixed fees are based, at the lower end, on work that will be carried out in a standard transaction, to include:

  • Take your instructions and give you initial advice
  • Check finances are in place to fund purchase and contact lender’s solicitors if needed
  • Receive and advise on contract documents or prepare same
  • Carry out searches if it is a purchase
  • Obtain planning documentation if required
  • Make any necessary enquiries of seller’s solicitor (if acting for buyer) or reply to same (if acting for the seller)
  • Give you advice on all documents and information received
  • Go through conditions of mortgage offer with you (if applicable)
  • Send final contract to you for signature
  • Agree completion date
  • Exchange contracts and notify you that this has happened
  • Arrange for all monies needed to be received from lender and you (if acting for the buyer)
  • Complete purchase
  • Deal with payment of Stamp Duty/Land Tax
  • Deal with application for registration at Land

What may require a higher fixed fee?

Our fixed fees may be higher where one or more of various factors make the matter more complicated than a standard application, including:

  • if there are particular practical aspects to your application that will require additional work to a transaction
  • anticipated urgency
  • additional complexity which includes for example:
    • if legal title is defective or part of the property is unregistered
    • if you discover building regulations or planning permission has not been obtained or the planning history is complex
    • if crucial documents you have previously requested from the client have not been provided
  • volume of documents to be reviewed
  • and overall executive responsibility required

What services will not be included in the fixed fee?

Unless we confirm otherwise, our fixed fee will not include:

  • tax advice as how to structure your purchase (although we would be happy to refer you to North Star Law Ltd’s private client solicitors for this assistance)
  • additional documents such as trust deeds, licenses to assign or to make alterations, second charges, deed of indemnity and grant of rights.

What other costs may there be?

These fees vary from property to property. We can give you an accurate figure once we have sight of your specific documents. In most applications, the main additional costs will be:

  • Bank charges, copying/scanning and postage fees; when we are scanning/ copying a large number of documents for you, we will make a one-off administrative charge of £50 to cover our costs relating to scanning/ copying your documents
  • postage costs
  • land registry fees
  • stamp duty fees
  • cost of third party searches
  • Notice of transfer fee (if leasehold)
  • Notice of charge fee (if there is a mortgage)

We handle the payment of the disbursements on your behalf to ensure a smoother process.

How long will the application take?

How long it will take from your offer being accepted until the transaction is complete will depend on a number of factors including the other side’s ability to provide replies to enquiries quickly but we aim to meet your objectives in this regard.

Who will be carrying out the work: team qualifications and experience

Work on your case will be carried out by a solicitor, with the assistance of trainee solicitors or paralegals. Information on the team members can be found on the team website page. For further information please contact John Fox or Benedikte Malling.