Moving house can be an expensive and stressful experience, that much is a given. But with 40% of buyers overspending on associated moving costs, it’s important to organise your finances by putting aside enough to help your home buying along, as well as making sure you’re getting a good deal.
Reallymoving aims to make moving home easier, and make those costs transparent, helping you to get quotes for surveys, conveyancing and removals. Once you’ve saved up the deposit, here are their 5 top areas you’ll likely need funds for and whether you can get a better deal:
Stamp Duty Land Tax is paid when a property is bought. The amount you pay is based on the price of the property, and is fixed by the government as follows:
|Purchase price bands (£)||Percentage rate (%)|
|Up to 125,000||0%|
|125,001 to 250,000||2%|
|250,001 to 925,000||5%|
|925,001 to 1,500,000||10%|
Changes to Stamp Duty in the 2017 autumn budget mean that first time buyers are now exempt from paying Stamp Duty on properties up to £300,000, and will not pay any on the first £300,000 of a property worth up to £500,000.
How is a first time buyer defined? You can never have owned residential property before, either in the UK or abroad. If you are buying with a partner you both have to be first time buyers.
If you are buying a second home, or a buy to let property, a 3% increase on Stamp Duty has been introduced.
You must pay your Stamp Duty within 30 days of completing on your new property, and it can be paid through your conveyancing solicitor.
A conveyancing solicitor, or licensed conveyancer, will be able to formalise your sale, dealing with transferring money, paying fees and organising the transfer of the deeds. Conveyancing costs will include the time of your conveyancer, but also ‘disbursements’- these are fees associated with your purchase, that the conveyancer pays on your behalf. These include things like local searches of the property, paying estate agent fees, land registration fees and if you need to pay it, Stamp Duty.
You can work out an approximate cost of conveyancing using our moving cost calculator, as it will depend on whether you’re buying, selling, or both.
Getting a survey is one of the most important things you can do when buying a property, and remember, a survey is NOT a valuation. A mortgage lender will offer a valuation to assess how much they are willing to lend you. A survey however, carried out by a Chartered Surveyor, will check the quality of the house, from the foundations to the wiring, and make sure your investment is solid. A survey will tell you what issues may arise and how much it might cost to fix, giving you room to bargain when buying.
There are two main options: a HomeBuyer’s Report and Building Survey. A Building Survey is more in depth, recommended for older properties, those that have had a lot of work done to them, or ones you intend to do a lot of work on. A HomeBuyer’s Report has been recommended by RICS (Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors) as a good, in depth option for most other homes. You can chat to your surveyor about which one suits your property.
You want to choose a great value removals team who can be depended on to turn up, but there are a few ways to manage costs and make sure you get the best deal. Choose a removals team who will survey your property – they can see how big the home is, if there’s any issues with access and parking, and can assess how much stuff you have and how long it will take to move. This means a more accurate quote and no nasty surprises.
Get rid of as much stuff as you can – throw away those old children’s toys and clothes from years ago, or even better, donate and sell stuff! Removals are charged based on the amount of stuff to move – the less you have, the cheaper it is. Engaging an APDO declutterer and organiser could help you reign in your belongings and help you identify what’s truly needed in the next phase.
Think about which items need to be disassembled in advance, and give your removals team notice that this is needed. Make sure you know exactly when you’re picking up the keys. Delays in conveyancing on the day can keep a removals team waiting around for hours, which you’ll be charged for.
Also work out if taking advantage of a packing service is better for you. A professional team know what they’re doing and can work efficiently, meaning safer items and less stress for you.
If there isn’t any crossover between leaving your old home and moving into your new one, paying for storage will be necessary. Look for companies that have great security at their units and maybe pick a removals company that can offer this along with their main services – it may work out cheaper for you. Consider if you need access to your items between moving days and if so, what times of day or the week you’d want to get in. As a rule of thumb, storage is more expensive the more flexible access you require.
When getting a mortgage, you will be required to purchase buildings insurance, starting from the day of exchange. Confirm with your existing insurers if you can transfer your home and contents policy to the new premise or if there are any admin charges to set up a new policy. Decide if you want to pay these policy costs upfront for the year or make monthly direct debits to manage cashflow during this period of heightened expenditure.
Most removals companies will have removals cover, but check their small print so you know the process for making claims, and whether this still applies if you have packed the boxes yourself. Be sure to make a list of any furniture/large items as well as your boxes (or better yet, number them as well as naming them with the contents, so you can tick them off on arrival). Be sure to compare removals companies’ rates and reviews, so you know you’re getting the best deal.
Planning for these supplementary costs can make your moving experience much more manageable; do your research well in advance so that you know likely timeframes when each cost will hit your bank balance. Always compare services to make sure you’re getting the best deal and avoid any unexpected extras.
Best of luck in your new home!