Legal issues to consider when buying a house

May 9, 2016 11:00 am

A house is usually the biggest purchase a person, couple or family will make in their lives. Aside from being the biggest it can also be one of the most complicated. Therefore, it is important to be aware of the legal issues around buying a house.

Value for money

When it comes to conveyancing do not be tempted by the cheapest offer – look for representatives who are recognised by organisations such as the Law Society to ensure you are getting proper value for money representation.

Services that they should offer include:

• Consultations with the Land Registry
• Conducting searches of the local area (looking at issues such as drainage systems, any potential environmental problems)
• Ensuring the stamp duty is paid
• Handles the exchange of cash

What are the legal fees?

Some lenders do contribute to legal fees. However, there is a catch to this as they may insist you use a legal representative that they approve of. If you want to pay for conveyancing this could be between £600-£1,000.

Make it clear

There is the danger you could agree to purchase a house only to find that it has been stripped of the fixtures and fittings. From a legal standpoint it is also important to set a clear timeframe – remember you can pull out at any time before a contract is exchanged but after that you could incur huge costs.

Be wary of auctions

Auctions can be a great way to get a bargain – however, as with any bargain hunting there is the danger that you get less than what you pay for. Ideally you should have your legal representative check the auction pack just to give you an idea of what you are bidding for and how much you should bid for it.

Finance should be in place

A broker may offer an initial mortgage promise but this could change once they have done their own valuation. With an auction you need to have a 10% deposit down on the day of the auction (you will also be required to present two forms of ID).

Check the area

If you are in an area that is at high risk of flooding then you should get flood insurance. This will help to avoid higher costs in the long term.

Room rental

Under the Rent A Room scheme it is possible to earn £4,250 per year on a room without paying additional tax. In other cases you could potentially save money as a landlord by deducting interest costs and other expenses.

Get help

At Larcomes our belief is that you need a legal firm that is both big enough to offer specialist representation and resources yet at the same time offer the care and personal service you need during the difficult and potentially stressful process of buying a house. While it can be difficult we can help you through the process and make it worth your while – contact us today for more information on how we can help you with all the legal issues around buying your new property.


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