What’s the cost of moving house?

Moving house is a huge step that requires careful budgeting. You’ll run into various costs along the way, ranging from a few hundred pounds to several thousands. While it’s not possible to predict every expense to the last penny, it’s wise to factor in a rough estimate of fees so that you’re not met with any nasty surprises that could delay your move, or even lead to a property purchase falling through.

Here, we’ve set out the key costs to look out for. Prices can vary for services such as conveyancing or removals, so it’s always wise to ring for precise quotes.

·         Legal fees

A solicitor or conveyancer works through the various legal matters that must be completed in any house sale, for example transferring title deeds, property searches, and finalising a mortgage with your bank or building society. Depending on the complexity of the sale, this can cost anything from £250 to £2,000-plus. A word of warning – cheap fixed-fee conveyancing can prove a false economy, resulting in hidden extra charges or slow service.

·         Land registry fee

This is paid to update the records that the Land Registry hold about your property, ensuring that you are shown as the legal owner. The cost depends upon your property purchase price and ranges from £50 to almost £1,000.

·         Stamp duty

Homes worth more than £125,000 incur stamp duty land tax, which is charged in bands ranging from 2% to 12% depending on the value of the home you are buying. If buying an additional home, there’s an extra 3% surcharge on those rates. However, first-time buyers are exempt from stamp duty on homes priced up to £300,000. If buying a shared ownership home, the exemption figure rises to £500,000.

·         Mortgage arrangement fee

When taking out a mortgage there’s often an arrangement fee attached, especially on fixed rate or tracker deals. It’s wise to shop around – fees can vary from zero to £2,000. It may be possible to add the arrangement fee to your mortgage balance, but be aware that the fee will then incur interest over the term of the loan.

·         Structural survey

This is an optional extra that checks far more than the mortgage valuation survey (which simply assesses how much a property is worth). A structural survey involves a detailed inspection of a property’s condition, flagging up problems such as subsidence, damp or broken roof tiles. Although not obligatory, in an older or unusual property a structural survey is always recommended.

·         Moving costs

Whether you plan to hire a van and move your own belongings, or use a professional removals company, the costs can add up. If completion dates don’t tie up with the end of a tenancy, or sale of another property, it’s also possible you will have to shell out for storage costs or temporary accommodation. Setting aside a contingency fund for these kinds of eventualities is sensible.

·        Estate agency fees 

In the UK, these are paid by sellers only – buyers do not pay fees to the estate agent. Fees are typically around 1.25 - 1.5% of the sale price, and here at Roger Coupe the fee is only payable on completion of a sale. Some online agents charge upfront marketing fees, which are non-refundable even if you decide to take your house off the market. Our ‘no sale, no fee’ policy is all-inclusive, covering the complete cost of marketing, home photography, showing potential buyers around your property, and of course the important work of sales progression once an offer has been accepted.

Need help buying or selling a home in 2019?

Here at Roger Coupe, we’re proud to offer deep-rooted expertise and unrivalled local knowledge of the property market in Cranleigh and surrounding villages. While you are of course free to choose your own mortgage broker, conveyancer, surveyor, or removals firm, we are happy to recommend local professionals whose work we trust. It’s important to get a competitive quote, but remember the mantra that ‘cheapest isn’t always best’. With the right agent and a good team behind you, you could achieve a hassle-free moving experience. That’s worth its weight in gold! Contact us today to find out more.