In addition to the property itself, there are a variety of associated costs that must be taken into consideration when purchasing a property. The following are some of the primary fees to be aware of:
Please note that the below list of costs is not exhaustive and for illustrative purposes only. Actual costs may vary.
Solicitors fees - Solicitor's fees are among the most significant expenses associated with purchasing a property. Fees may differ, however, allow up to £2000, and a quote should be obtained prior to any work commencing.
Conveyancing - Conveyancing usually includes:
- The drawing up of contracts between you and the seller
- Organising your Stamp Duty payment
- The payment transfer for your new property
Searches - Your solicitor will also commission your local authority searches. Search costs are usually included in the solicitor's fee, but if not, they should be around £200 to £300.
Mortgage arrangement fee - When you secure a mortgage from a bank or building society, it's common for them to impose a setup fee. The pricing of these mortgage arrangement fees fluctuates, influenced by factors such as the mortgage type, its value, and the interest rate you commit to. NBKI arrangement fees vary between 0.75 % to 1% of the total loan amount. At NBKI, the minimum loan amount is £200 000 meaning that the minimum arrangement fee is £2000.
Valuation fees - When applying for a mortgage, a lender will assess the value of the home you intend to purchase to ensure that it is worth its asking price. The fee for this will be contingent upon the value of the property you are purchasing. Generally fees are based upon a rate of 0.1% of value (net of VAT) with a minimum charge of £850. This fee may increase based on the properties proximity to central London as well as if the value exceeds £2.5m.
Survey costs – Survey costs can vary from between £400 and £1500. NBKI requires surveys to be performed by Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (“RICS”) accredited surveyors who have been trained to the RICS's exacting standards.
Property surveys include:
Condition report – this report is most appropriate for both newly constructed and existing dwellings in good standing. This survey does not provide any advice or valuation. (£400 - £950)
Homebuyer's report - also known as a 'level two home survey’. This report is suitable for conventional properties in reasonable condition. It is a much more in- depth survey, covering both the inside and outside of the property, and includes a valuation. (£400 - £1000)
Full structural survey - also known as a 'level three home survey’. This report is the comprehensive survey available and applicable to all residential properties. This survey is especially useful for older homes or those that may require repairs. (£600 - £1500)
Stamp Duty costs - Stamp Duty Land Tax is a tax that's payable on the purchase or transfer of property or land in the UK, where the amount paid is above a certain threshold. The rate of Stamp Duty you will pay varies depending on the price of the property and whether it is your first home, an additional property, or a corporate purchase. The system is tiered, meaning that different portions of the property price are taxed at different rates. Use this Stamp Duty calculator to get an idea of the amount of tax you will be liable to pay.
Below is an indicative timeline of the home-buying process in the UK:
Getting a mortgage Agreement in Principle: 24 hours - Agreement in Principle agreements should be your first step in purchasing a home.
Finding your home and making an offer: a few weeks or months - It's impossible to provide a precise timeframe for how long your house hunting process will take, as it varies widely for everyone.
Pre-contract stage: 4 - 12 weeks – This stage comprises obtaining your mortgage offer, the drafting of the sale contract and the conducting of searches and surveys.
Exchange to completion: 12 weeks - After you've received your mortgage offer, the contracts have been drafted, and completed the necessary property searches, you're ready to proceed with the contract exchange. This stage of the home buying journey typically spans 20 to 30 days. *12 weeks provided the property in not under construction.
Completion: 2 weeks – At this point you can take occupation of your property, however, there are several additional steps to keep in mind. This includes the payment of Stamp Duty , the registration of your ownership with the Land Registry and the handover of copy the title deeds to you and your mortgage lender.
This guide is provided for general use and does not substitute external professional advice specific to your circumstances. NBKI does not provide tax, investment, accounting or legal advice. Please consult with your own advisors before proceeding with any financial commitment. You can also find impartial financial advice from government agencies such as MoneyHelper or the sites listed in the UK government website.
It is important to be aware of your tax liabilities prior to investing in a property.
Tax treatment in the UK
You should familiarise yourself with your tax obligations before purchasing a property in the UK for investment purposes. In the UK, the income you earn from a rental property is subject to Income Tax. Non-resident landlords owning property in the UK are required to pay income tax on rental income they earn from their UK properties.
In the UK, non-resident individuals who sell a residential property may be liable for Non-Resident Capital Gains Tax. This tax is charged on the gain in the value of the property between the time it was bought and the time it was sold.
Please refer to the UK government website for more information. It is recommended to get professional advice when dealing with complex tax issues.