Rising Stamp Duty and conveyancing fees push moving costs to record high

The cost of moving home has hit a record high – but estate agents cannot be blamed for the hike.

Data based on 366,007 conveyancing quotes requested through comparison website reallymoving.com shows the cost of moving home in the UK has increased by 2% annually, to £10,414.

It increases to £24,585 in London.

Higher Stamp Duty bills and an increase in conveyancing fees are driving up costs for those moving home, up 4% and 5% respectively.

The amount that estate agents have been able to charge has gone down by 1%, reflecting a drop in average selling prices.

Estate agency fees are assumed to be 1.18% of the median selling price excluding VAT based on the latest data from The Advisory.

This means sellers are typically paying £3,356 to an agent, based on a median sale price of £237,000. This is slightly less than the £240,000 that sellers were achieving a year ago.

First-time buyers are also paying more to move despite not having any Stamp Duty or agency bills to pay.

The research shows that home movers are selling for rather less, and buying for rather more.

It also shows that first-time buyers are paying 2% more than a year ago, or £1,613 on average, with the cost driven up by a 2.5% hike in conveyancing bills and a 5% rise in removal fees.

The figures are based on a first-time buyer property price of £180,000, up 4% from last year’s first-time buyer price of £173,000.

Rob Houghton, chief executive of reallymoving, said: “Home owners are having to dig deeper than ever before to fund a move, with costs reaching another record high.”

Tables showing annual change in moving costs for home owners and First Time Buyers (FTBs)

Homeowners

2018

2019

% change

FTBs

2018

2019

%

Change

Stamp Duty

£4,462

£4,625

4%

Stamp Duty

£0

£0

0%

Estate Agent fees

£3,398

£3,356

-1%

Estate Agent fees

£0

£0

0%

Conveyancing

£1,416

£1,490

5%

Conveyancing

£934

£958

2.5%

Survey

£424

£408

-4%

Survey

£372

£366

-2%

Removals

£474

£480

1%

Removals

£275

£289

5%

EPC

£55

£55

0%

EPC

£0

£0

0%

Total

£10,230

£10,414

2%

Total

£1,581

£1,613

2%

Selling and buying prices:

Homeowners

2018

2019

% Change

FTBs

2018

2019

% Change 

Purchase

£289,250

£292,500

1%

Purchase

£173,000

£180,000

4%

Sale

£240,000

£237,000

-1%

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2 Comments

  1. TwitterSalisPropNews

    It sounds as though the public are searching out better conveyancing, as until now ‘cheap’ has caused them issues. 

    The public realise that if their conveyancer boasts how fast they are this means likely mistakes, and they now know that cheap, means they employ mediocre staff. So what they are positioning themeslves to find, is a prompt (not fast) affordable (not cheap) expert (not mediocre) conveyancer.

    At a more attractive cost – or what the above article might sensationalise as ‘rising’ cost – when it is no such thing. It’s always been out ther at that same price, it’s just now in demand.

    Bag #ImpressiveConveyancing – it’s the smart move now.

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  2. Alan Murray

    It has been a long time since conveyancing fees were on an upward curve. So hopefully this is a good sign of things to come.

    There is only so long that the bucket shops and factories can keep their market share based only on cheap prices. Eventually poor expertise and service are bound to catch up. I think the penny has finally started to drop with Estate Agents who realise the reason there are such severe delays in transactions these days is because of the very organisations they are paying referral fees to. Being associated with such poor service levels and having to explain to clients the real reason they are recommending conveyancers who offer a tenth rate product is probably wearing pretty thin by now. Not to mention the reputation these outfits have is now known far and wide, and they certainly will not be attracting any repeat business.

    You can pull the wool over the eyes of people for so long, but they are not stupid and eventually the consumer strikes back. Gerald Ratner will attest to that – sell c..p and you will eventually reap what you sow. Why settle for second best when for a little extra you can have your conveyancing carried out by experienced professionals who know what they are doing and will give you the service you deserve. You wouldn’t take your smart new BMW to a cheap backstreet garage for its first service would you, so why put your new house, the most expensive asset you will probably ever own, in the hands of the conveyancing equivalents?

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