Our Services

Residential Conveyancing

Our approach to conveyancing is not just to progress the matter as quickly as possible but  to offer a very personal service, to keep you informed and to be there to advise on the numerous decisions that you may need to make during the course of the transaction.

The matter will be handled throughout by a qualified and experienced solicitor. You won’t need to speak to different people and explain who you are each time you call.   You will be advised and supported by the same solicitor, William Essex. We know our clients are happy with our service because as accredited members of the Law Society’s Conveyancing Quality scheme which requires high standards of customer care, we ask for feedback from you and in the vast majority of cases this has been extremely positive. The character of this firm is to go the extra mile as far as we reasonably can to meet the needs of our clients.

If you’re not really sure what’s involved with typical conveyancing transaction and you’re a buyer click here or a seller click here for a summary of the steps involved. Please also have a look at our Frequently Asked Questions.

The whole process, from the time you find the property, until you move in can take a matter of days. This could apply for example where you are buying an empty property, there is no ‘chain’ and you are a cash buyer. However  in most cases a mortgage has to be arranged by the buyer (and often by the seller as well if there is a related transaction) and therefore the  average time scale is often 8 to 10 weeks from start to finish.


We set out in our Terms of Business the basis on which we calculate a fee for your sale or purchase. This depends on factors such  as the price paid, whether you are buying or selling a flat or with a mortgage , and whether the property is a new build or shared ownership.

We charge a supplement for buying or selling flats, because of the added investigation that needs to be carried out into the management and maintenance of the block in which the flat is located. We wish to ensure that the building is well managed, with reasonable service charges, that future works can be properly funded and so on. We ask questions of the Landlord, managing Agents and often as well tenants’ associations. In addition the Lease requires examination to make sure it is of proper length and not defective, and leasehold transmission requirements need to be followed such as Deeds of Covenant, transfers of shares in freehold, serving Notices. The supplement covers all such work on our part (but not payments to the Landlord or other people)

Typically our conveyancing fees will range between £995 and £1750 plus VAT in addition to a £25 plus VAT professional indemnity insurance contribution. We also charge £25 plus VAT per bank transfer. 

Disbursements on a purchase

‘Disbursements’   means the payments made to other people on your behalf in the course of a conveyancing transaction. The disbursements are not subject to VAT. They include:

  • The searches- this expression covers  enquiries made of  the  local authority, an environmental investigation and a water and drainage search and chancel indemnity insurance; together these costs are  £164.
  • Land Registry search £3 and Bankruptcy search on each borrower (£2 each).
  • ID check £5 per person
  • Stamp duty land tax (SDLT) levied at the relevant percentage of the purchase price (see table below).
  •  The Land Registry fee on registration of a property (see table below)
  •  (Leasehold only) Leasehold transmission fees- these depend on the Lease and we will advise you what they are  as part of our investigation. They may include Notice fees, Deed of Covenant (a direct agreement between the buyer and the Landlord), fee for providing a Certificate of Compliance, or dealing with transfer of shares in the freehold company. Typically these may be between £50 to £300.

Stamp Duty Land Tax

When you purchase a property, you must pay Stamp Duty Land Tax (unless you are exempt under the provisions) which is calculated as a percentage on differing portions of the purchase price.

Purchase price of property Rate of SDLT
Up to £125,000 Zero
Over £125,000 to £250,000 2%
Over £250,000 to £925,000 5%
Over £925,000 to £1.5 million 10%
Over £1.5 million 12%

Example: A buyer purchases a house for £275,000. SDLT is calculated as follows:

0% on the first £125,000 = £0
2% on the next £125,000 = £2,500
5% on the final £25,000 = £1,250
Total SDLT payable = £3,750

An additional 3% of the purchase price will apply for owners of more than one property.

Land Registry Registration Charges

Having completed your purchase, we will register your ownership with the Land Registry without delay.  The Registration fee is calculated with reference to the purchase price as shown below.

Purchase Value Land Registry fee




£100,001-200,000 £95
£200,001-500,000 £135
£500,001-1,000,000 £270
£1,000,001 and over £455

Disbursements on a sale

    • Copies of the land registers £6 (or £12 for leasehold).
  • (leasehold only)Managing agents fees of between £150 to £300. to cover the cost of providing information for the buyer.

 We will arrange for the payment of the estate agent fees from the funds we hold for you when the transaction completes.