• What is conveyancing? Conveyancing is the means through which the ownership of a property land or both is transferred from one individual to another.
  • I am a first-time buyer, will I need to pay stamp duty? As of 2012, first-time buyers have been required to pay stamp duty on all property with the exception of those costing less than £125,000.
  • How much stamp duty will I be required to pay? This depends on the value of your purchase. The amount you pay in stamp duty will be a percentage of what you pay for the property and the rates are as follows:
    • Up to £125,000 = None
    • Between £125,001 and £250,000 = 2%
    • Between £250,001 and £925,000 = 5%
    • Between £925,001 and £1.5 million = 10%
    • Above £1.5 million = 12%
  • How long does the conveyancing process usually take? This will differ depending on circumstances but usually takes between six and twelve weeks.
  • What is the difference between freehold and leasehold? When purchasing a freehold property, you are purchasing both the property and the land it stands on. When buying a leasehold property, you will own the property, but not the land which will remain owned by a landlord (known as the leaseholder).
    Should you buy a leasehold property, you will need to seek the leaseholders permission to make alterations to the property, will need to pay an annual management fee to this individual and will need to ensure that the leasehold is renewed prior to it expiring.
  • Do I need a survey? Your lender will arrange a basic survey for you, but this is often undertaken without entering the relevant property so is unlikely to reveal any significant defects.
    Online Conveyancing recommend that a more detailed homebuyers report is obtained as this will see the property analysed in greater detail. A more expensive full structural survey is only required if the property is over 100 years old or is in a state of disrepair.

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