Residential Property Fees

The residential team at gunnercooke believe that buying or selling your home shouldn’t be stressful.  Your work will be undertaken by a dedicated, highly responsive partner who is an expert in their field. The partner will retain conduct of your matter throughout the transaction and will not pass the work on to less experienced solicitors to deal with.  They will be on hand to assist and advise you at every step of the transaction from start to finish. 


  • Buying and Selling
  • Lease Extensions
  • Freehold Enfranchisement
  • Mortgaging and Refinancing
  • Licences to Alter
  • Tenancy Agreements
  • Off Plan/New Build Purchases and Sales
  • Development Acquisition and Structuring
  • Landlord and Tenant Issues
  • Rural Land and Equestrian Land

Stages of Buying and Selling

There are four stages to all sales and purchases:

  1. Pre-Contract.  This is when we carry out our investigations of the property, negotiate the contract and report to you.  As a rule, this normally takes between 3 and 5 weeks.
  2. Exchange of contracts.  This is when you become contractually bound to buy or sell the property.  A deposit (normally 10%) is paid and the completion date is set.
  3. Completion. This is when the property becomes legally yours. 
  4. Post-Completion.  This is when we deal with all post completion formalities such as registration at the Land Registry and payment of Stamp Duty Land Tax.


Every gunnercooke partner has at least 10,000 hours practising experience making them expertly placed to advise in relation to all aspects of residential property and all associated finance, tax structuring, wealth planning and development matters.  We have particular expertise in advising High Net Worth Individuals (many of whom are overseas) in relation to tax efficient ways of holding UK property.

At gunnercooke we work on a very competitive fixed cost basis.  Our quotes will always be adhered to unless the nature of the transaction changes. 

On a freehold or leasehold purchase, our fees would be 0.2% of the purchase price plus VAT and disbursements.

On a freehold or leasehold sale, our fees would be 0.175% of the purchase price plus VAT and disbursements.


The fees listed above assume the following:-

  • This is a standard transaction and no unforeseen matters arise including for example (but not limited to) a defect in title which requires remedying prior to completion or the preparation of additional documents ancillary to the main transaction.
  • The mortgage is with a high street lender and we are not required to negotiate or advise on finance terms.
  • If the property is leasehold, this is the assignment of an existing lease and is not the grant of a new lease.
  • The transaction is concluded in a timely manner and no unforeseen complication arise.
  • All parties to the transaction are co-operative and there is no unreasonable delay from third parties providing documents.
  • No indemnity policies are required. Additional disbursements may apply if indemnity policies are required.

What our fee includes

On Purchases we will:

  • Take your instructions and give you initial advice
  • Check finances are in place to fund purchase and contact lender’s solicitors if needed
  • Receive and advise on contract documents
  • Carry out searches
  • Obtain further planning documentation if required
  • Make any necessary enquiries of seller’s solicitor
  • In the case of leasehold property, review the management information and make further enquiries of the Managing Agent/Landlord if necessary
  • In the case of leasehold property, assist the Seller with
  • Report to you on all documents and information received
  • Send the Contract to you for signature
  • Agree the completion date (date from which you own the property)
  • Exchange contracts and notify you that this has happened
  • Arrange for all monies needed to be received from lender and you
  • Complete the purchase
  • Deal with payment of Stamp Duty Land Tax
  • Deal with application for registration at Land Registry

On Sales we will:

  • Take your instructions and give you initial advice
  • Draft the contract
  • Prepare and send you the Property Information Forms to complete and return to us
  • Prepare the sales pack
  • In the case of leasehold property, contact the landlord/managing agents to ascertain their fees for providing a pre-sale assignment pack
  • In the case of leasehold property in which the landlord’s consent is required (known as Licence to Assign) on a sale, obtain the landlord’s requirements in this regard
  • Liaise with you for your input and provide replies to any enquiries which the buyer’s solicitor may raise
  • Agree the form of contract and send this to you for signature
  • Exchange contracts on your behalf
  • Agree the form of Transfer Deed
  • Obtain a redemption statement from your lender as to the amount owing on your mortgage on the completion date
  • Obtain an invoice from your estate agents as to the commission they are due
  • Prepare a financial statement for you as to the net amount due to you once all third party payment are made
  • Circulate the Transfer Deed to you for signature
  • Complete the Licence to Assign
  • Complete the sale
  • Send the title deeds to the buyer’s solicitors
  • Repay your mortgage
  • Settle your estate agents commission


Stamp Duty Land Tax “SDLT” is usually the largest single disbursement.  It is charged in bands of value at increasing rates.  The usual rates are:-

Price/value Rate
Up to £125,000 0%
The next £125,000 (the portion from £125,001 to £250,000) 2%
The next £675,000 (the portion from £250,001 to £925,000) 5%
The next £575,000 (the portion from £925,001 to £1.5 million) 10%
The remaining amount (the portion above £1.5 million) 12%

If you are a first-time buyer you do not have to pay SDLT where the price is under £500,000.

If you or your spouse or civil partner own or have any (even a minor) interest in any other residential property anywhere in the world, you have to pay an additional rate of 3% over the usual rates (so 3% instead of 0%, 5% instead of 2% and so on).  You can check your SDLT liability on the HRMC Stamp Taxes Calculator

On purchases there will be search fees for the usual conveyancing searches. These can vary according to the location of the property but are usually in the region of £450 to £750 approximately.

Land registry fees for registration of title are payable and are charged by the Land Registry in bands of value at increasing rates.

The usual rates for dealings with whole titles are:-

Price/value Fee
0 to £80,000 £20
£80,001 to £100,000 £40
£100,001 to £200,000 £95
£200,001 to £500,000 £135
£500,001 to £1,000,000 £270
£1,000,001 and over £455

However, there may be additional land Registry fees depending on the circumstances of your transaction.

Our bank transfer fee is £20 + VAT.

Pre-completion searches do not normally cost more than £10 per buyer in usual circumstances.

On sales or purchases, there may also be fees relating to compliance with the requirements of the lease or other administrative arrangements relating to the property you are buying or selling which we will be able to ascertain in the course of the transaction and report to you.