Guidance notes

What are Disbursements?
A “disbursement” is any expense (over and above our fee/VAT for acting for you) that we have to meet on your behalf in order to deal with your matter. All disbursements will be itemised at cost price in our final account but, in the meantime, it will assist you to have a note of those which most commonly arise. Thus disbursements are in fact goods or services, necessary to you, supplied to you not by us but by other people. We do not add a “mark-up”, or in any other way secretly profit from disbursements, but merely recoup their cost from you. This is why, although we do our best to give you an estimate in advance, you will have to pay the actual cost of disbursements even if this differs from our estimate.
A. When You Sell Property:
1. We may need to buy up-to-date copies of your title from H.M. Land Registry (usually £6-£12).
2. If your property is mortgaged, the Mortgage Company may debit you with a deeds production fee when they send the deeds to us (usually £30-£65). The settlement figure on your mortgage may also be increased by the amount of any redemption fee, penalty interest or the like.
3. We will not settle the estate agent’s commission out of the proceeds unless specifically instructed to do so.
B. When you Buy or (Re)Mortgage Property:
Large but unavoidable expenses can arise and you will not want to overlook these when you do your budgeting:
1. Searches
Enquiries must be made in central and local Registries. Normally these will total between £85 and £250. but in the event of delay have to be renewed at the same cost. Figures are accurate as at the last communication with the Council, but the cost is fixed by them and we cannot guarantee the Council has not varied it in the meantime.
2. Stamp Duty Land Tax
A tax payable to the Inland Revenue calculated at 1% on the total value of the property if you are purchasing for more than £175,000. For purchases over £250,000 Stamp Duty is calculated at 3% and over £500,000 Stamp Duty is 4%. We must be in funds to settle this on completion. Mortgages only do not attract Stamp Duty. Please refer to the enclosed scale at the end of these notes.
3. Land Registry Fee
The charge raised by H.M. Land Registry to register the change of ownership, mortgages etc. This applies in all cases. It is not always possible at the outset to say whether this charge will arise or how much it will be. As a rough guide, allow £130 to £280 for purchases between £80,000 and £200,000. Once again please refer to the enclosed scale at the rear of these notes.
C. Generally
Other disbursements can arise, which might include landlord’s registration fee if you buy a leasehold, landlord’s standard leasehold pack if you sell a leasehold. Local Authority copying charges, Bank charges for drafts or stopped, dishonoured or specially cleared cheques, and sundry fees for special searches which sometimes have to be made. It is impossible to supply an exhaustive list.
At our discretion we will specially clear certain private cheques received, raising an appropriate administration charge to cover the cost. The reason for doing this is not so much distrust in clients as the necessity of being assured of cleared funds. Although there can be no hard and fast rule, you should also expect that we will specially clear any private cheque in the amount of more than £150.
You should also note that where mortgage funds are released by way of cheque we will ask your lender to ensure that those funds are with us four working days before completion is due to take place.
Mortgage Expenses
If you are taking a mortgage please allow for certain further items arising either in addition to or by way of deduction from the mortgage money. Your mortgage offer when you receive it should make the position clear. In addition to the Mortgage Company’s legal fees (see scale enclosed), possible deductions from the mortgage money might include the premium for mortgage guarantee insurance and fees for the arrangement of the loan, transmission of funds, additional survey and the like.
Money on Account of Disbursements
You will not be asked for money unless we need it. We will not ask for more than we need nor pester you for very small sums but we will need advance payments for large or unusual disbursements and will invoice you for these if and as they occur. These items often arise at an early stage. They will probably include the items A. 1. and B. 1. above (£12 if selling, £85-£250 if buying / mortgaging property). They will possibly include item A. 2. above (£30-£65 deeds production fee if selling / remortgaging).This way of working benefits both you and us. For us, better cash flow and less spent on credit control leads to more competitive fee rates. For you there are the advantages of being kept informed and able to budget and approve larger items of expenditure.
You may wish to note that we neither make nor accept payments in cash.
Additional Work and Charges
Our service covers ALL the work necessary to carry through a straightforward transaction. We will not, without your knowledge undertake unnecessary work outside the terms of our instructions. Even so, we are quite often asked to do additional work and are always happy to do so at a reasonable charge. Examples would be dealing with Powers of Attorney, transfers to and from joint names, sundry additional Deeds (Gift, Trust and Covenant etc) Second Mortgages and other loans, completing SDLT returns (£42 plus vat), undertakings to Banks, contract races, and general expedition (including completing ahead of the contractual completion date or within 15 days of exchanging contracts in any event – £100 plus vat). Buy to let properties would also attract additional charges which will be discussed on an individual basis depending on what is required.
The charge for telegraphic transfer of funds as necessary or instructed is £39 plus VAT and we do reserve the right to levy a contribution towards the cost of sundries, particularly faxes and photocopying. However, contributions so charged will be restricted to a maximum of £35 inclusive of VAT per file. The charge for special clearance of cheques is currently £17 plus VAT. If your matter does not go ahead for any reason then (unless you are a subscriber to the Low Fee Guarantee Scheme) abortive work will be charged in proportion to the original fees quotation.
VALUE OR AMOUNT Purchase / Transfer of Equity (Re)Mortgage
£ £ £
£0.00 to £50,000.00 50 50
£50,001.00 to £80,000.00 80 50
£80,001.00 to £100,000.00 130 50
£100,001.00 to £200,000.00 200 70
£200,001.00 to £500,000.00 280 90
£500,001.00 to £1,000,000.00 550 130
£1,000,001.00 and over 920 260
£175,001.00 to £250,000.00 1%
£250,001.00 to £500,000.00 3%
£500,001.00 and over 4%
Where we act for the Client and Lender contemporaneously
Advance: Lenders legal fee payable by you: Where personal attendance is required:
£ £ £
£0.00 to £50,000.00 154 169
£50,001.00 to £100,000.00 169 184
£100,001.00 to £150,000.00 184 199
£150,001.00 to £250,000.00 199 214
£250,001.00 and over Add £2.50 for each £10,000 or part thereof Add £2.50 for each £10,000 or part thereof
*These charges do not include VAT (which will be charged at the standard rate currently 15%), or disbursements.