How Much Are Conveyancing Searches in Leeds?
When buying a property, your conveyancing solicitor will arrange a number of conveyancing searches to see if there are any issues both legally or environmentally, that could affect the property or its surrounding land. To help you with your research, Compare My Move has collected the average cost of some of the conveyancing searches in Leeds.
One of the main searches to be carried out is the Local Authority Search. A local land charges search will be submitted to the local council by your conveyancer and will highlight any restrictions that could potentially affect the property you’re viewing or the land it’s located on.
We have found a number of fees related to these charges on the Leeds City Council website. According to their Local Land Charges and Searches page, the complete Local Authority Search costs £72.70, including VAT. This includes the two parts that the search is divided into, LLC1 and CON29R.
The singular LLC1 form is exempt from VAT and currently costs £26.50. If you simply require the CON29 form, the cost is £46.20 including VAT. It should be noted that there will be further administration charges if you should require copies of these forms. You can also acquire the CON29O form for £9.84 per enquiry.
Other conveyancing searches include an Environmental Search and Water and Drainage search. Some conveyancers will offer specific searches as part of a package deal, affecting the overall cost. The results of these searches may also require you to arrange even more searches such as a Mining Search. These will all be arranged by your conveyancer and so it’s important to keep an open line of communication.
Form LLC1 Official Search of the Register
£26.50 inc VAT
This includes details of any restrictions or prohibitions on the land/property and any financial charges held against it. It is exempt from VAT.
Form CON29 Enquiries of the Local Authority
£46.20 inc VAT
This includes approximately 60 enquiries. It provides vital information such as recent statutory notices, Compulsory Purchase Orders and any building or road proposals that may impact the property.
Standard Search (Forms LLC1 and CON29R submitted together)
£72.70 inc VAT
This will contain both the Official compiled LLC1 report and the Official compiled CON29.
What Are the Flood Risks in Leeds?
As part of the Environmental Search, your conveyancer will retrieve the necessary documents to assess the flood risk of the area the property you’re interested in is located. According to the Flood Risk Areas Map, Leeds has a high flood risk with the chance of flooding each year being greater than 3.3%.
The main reason for this is the number of properties situated within close proximity to the River Aire. Despite the risk of flooding due to surface water being fairly high also, Leed’s main risk is from the rivers. Streets such as Thwaite Lane and Lockside Road are often subject to flood warnings and alerts due to the River Aire being so close-by.
If you’re searching for properties within this area, it would be wise to thoroughly read the results of the Environmental Search. You can even use the Friends of the Earth Flood Map to discover which streets and properties in Leeds have previously suffered from historical flooding.
You can also view the Leeds City Council’s latest advice for flooding on their Flood Advice page. They have listed all the vital contact details needed if your property should suffer from flooding-related issues. For further peace of mind, you can also view their preliminary flood risk assessment.
Are There Ground Stability Concerns in Leeds?
As Leeds has a history of coal mining, ground instability is a big problem for many homeowners. Your conveyancer will arrange the necessary conveyancing searches to see if this will affect your property. They may even suggest arranging a separate Coal Mining report. If you’d like to do some further research yourself, you can view The Coal Authority Map and locate the property you’re considering buying.
One damaging result from ground instability is subsidence. When the ground beneath a building shrinks or compresses, the foundations become unstable and the property can start to sink. As you can see on the UK Subsidence Map, Leeds is very close to a subsidence ‘hotspot’ meaning many properties could be at risk.
As the Clay Hazards Level in Leeds is only classed as A to C, it is unlikely that the soil beneath the building will be the cause of any subsidence-related problems and so a survey should clear any confusion. Leeds has a number of protected trees that could cause damage to properties which you will have to get permission from the local council to remove.
However, it is more than likely that the city’s history of coal mining is the biggest reason for ground instability which is why a separate Coal Mining report is so important for many buyers. Leeds has a history of landslides, showing that the once active mines have greatly affected its land.
- Reveals instability issues from natural or man-made hazards.
- Highlights historic and current landfill sites.
- Identifies natural ground subsidence.
- Recognises historic tin, coal, clay and any other mining activity.
What are the Radon Gas Levels in Leeds?
As part of the Local Authority Search, the CON29 document requested by your conveyancer will ask the necessary questions regarding the threat of radon gas near the property. Radon gas is a colourless and odourless gas that is emitted from rocks and soils when the natural uranium decays. Low emissions are not a threat to homeowners, but increased emissions can lead to health problems.
This conveyancing search will determine whether the house you’re viewing is in or near a radon affected area. According to the UK Radon Map, the centre of Leeds does not have a high emissions rate. However, there are radon ‘hotspots’ surrounding the city that buyers should be aware of.
If you’re searching for a home on the outskirts of Leeds, then this conveyancing search will be vital in discovering how high the emissions are. The highest emissions surrounding Leeds comes from the nearby city of Wakefield. Even though the emission rate is still labelled as fairly moderate, it is still important to research the possible health implications involved.
In Leeds itself, there are a few locations classed as raised radon areas. This includes streets such as Greenway Court Road and Pilgrims Way, meaning the properties within them have a higher probability of experiencing above-average ground radon emissions. They have a maximum radon potential of 1%-3%, a fact that should be uncovered in the conveyancing searches.
Is Contaminated Land an Issue in Leeds?
Contaminated land is commonly found at locations that were once used for landfills, steel mills, mining, factories or refinery. They typically contain substances or pollutants that could cause significant harm to people, properties or protected species. As Leeds has a major history of coal mining, this will be a vital search for many buyers.
Due to this vast mining history, many areas of Leeds will experience issues concerning ground instability and contaminated land. Whether it’s because there are still minerals present within the soil or the previous mining structures have started to decay, properties in or near previous mining sites will be at risk of collapsing or being contaminated.
If your conveyancer highlights that your property is located within or near a contaminated/previously contaminated area, it’s important that you discuss the situation and do your own research before committing to the purchase.
Leeds City Council has a detailed strategy for Inspecting Contaminated Land for users to browse through. They also have a number of safety measures in place to prevent any risk to public health and a thorough report that explains the investigation and development of land affected by contamination.