How Much Are Conveyancing Search Costs in Barnet?
The searches organised by your conveyancer are essential to the house buying process in the UK. They will include useful information and essential details of the home and surrounding area. This includes documents and reports held by Barnet Council.
The environmental searches organised by your conveyancer solicitor will provide information on any flood risks in the area, the level of radon gas and any issues regarding to ground instability, subsidence and land contamination.
Your local authority search report will provide details of any charges or restrictions which could impact the use of the property. This includes tree preservation orders, enforcement notices, planning permissions and financial charges. The search also includes reviewing information with regard to local plans, highways and assets of community value.
These searches will be included in the conveyancing fees, which will vary depending on location. The cost of a full residential search in Barnet is £263.89. A Local Land Charges Search (LLC1) is £75.47, with the CON29 form costing £188.43 (inc VAT).
Local Land Charges Search (LLC1)
£75.47 inc VAT
The LLC1 search informs purchasers of restrictions or charges affecting the use of the property, such as tree preservation orders, enforcement notices, planning permissions and financial charges.
£188.43 inc VAT
The CON29 provides information on matters such as local plans, highways and assets of community value.
£263.89 inc VAT
LLC1 and CON29 combined
What Are the Flood Risks in Barnet?
As part of the conveyancing process, your solicitor will arrange searches that can highlight the potential flooding concerns in Barnet Severe flooding has the potential to cause considerable damage to residential properties so it is essential that you are aware of any flood risks before you buy purchase the home.
According to the London Borough of Barnet Local Flood Risk Strategy, there are several sources of flooding within Barnet which includes surface water flooding, flooding from ordinary watercourses and groundwater flooding.
Barnet Council’s website reports that there have flooding incidents across the borough every year since 2010. This flooding is often localised, but these events highlight that flooding can occur at any time and with potentially devastating consequences for residents.
The borough experienced surface water flooding in 2012 which reinforced the risks posed from local sources in Barnet. Furthermore, the council reported that climate change is predicted to result in more storm events, greater levels of rainfall and consequently, an increase in the probability of flooding.
Are there Ground Stability Concerns in Barnet?
Ground stability will also be reviewed as part of the environmental searches organised by your conveyancer. This is essential to understand any risks associated with the land, including issues such as subsidence.
Subsidence is a dreaded word for homeowners, not least because it can cause the property to “sink” into the ground beneath it. Not only can this dramatically reduce the value of the home, but in extreme cases, it can also cause the property to become unsafe to live in.
Larger cities are prone to larger amounts of subsidence, in part due to the sheer amount of high-rise buildings in a condensed area, adding pressure on the ground. London is at further risk due to the fact that many areas of Greater London have been built on “London Clay”, a natural material that is a type of shrinkable clay and susceptible to changes. A report from Barnet Council states that the underlying geology of the borough consists of London clay.
This is supported by the findings illustrated in a map created by Geobear that identifies subsidence hotspots across the country. The map revealed that although the amount of subsidence in Barnet is lower than both central and areas of South London, it is still at a level that would be considered a potential concern for those looking to purchase a property in the area.
With this in mind, it is essential that you thoroughly read your search report and flag any questions or worries you may have with your conveyancing solicitor as soon as possible.
- 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 Barnet?
In addition to reviewing flood risks and potential ground instability concerns, the environmental searches organised by your conveyancer will also review the levels of Radon Gas in the local area. Formed from the radioactive decay of small amounts of uranium that occurs naturally in rocks and soil, Radon Gas is both colourless and odourless. As a result, it can often go undetected in UK homes.
Being aware of the levels in your home and the surrounding area is crucial as high levels can cause serious health issues, including lung cancer in non-smokers. In response to these concerns, Public Health England has created a heat map of Radon Gas. which acts as a visual guide of the levels of Radon Gas across the country. For Barnet, these levels are some of the lowest found across the UK and it is unlikely that it is something that will be a concern when buying a house in the area.
To be certain that Radon Gas will not be an issue, your conveyancing solicitor will send you the search reports which will include the level of Radon Gas for the area of Barnet you are looking to move to. If you have any concerns regarding the report findings, you must raise this with your solicitor before the completion of the sale.
Is Contaminated Land an Issue in Barnet?
Contaminated Land is largely a result of previous industrial activity across the UK. Pollutants from past industries can seep into the land and waterways and contaminate them, making them potentially unsafe for humans and the wider environment. Waste disposal and accidental spillages of contaminants can also cause contamination of land.
According to the London Borough of Barnet Contaminated Land Strategy, Barnet is primarily a residential area, with some light industrial history and a small number of former landfill sites. Today, most commercial activity in the borough tends to be concentrated in High Streets and individual town centres. The borough is home to a small amount of light industrial development, mostly found near the area of Edgware Road.
The borough’s Contaminated Land Strategy reports that the underlying geology of the borough consists of London clay, which reduces the likelihood of off-site migration of contaminants. Nevertheless, the council states that they thoroughly investigate all potential issues of pollution involving surface and groundwater, and upward and lateral migration of contamination throughout Barnet.
To be sure that the land which the house you want to buy resides in is not contaminated, your conveyancer will arrange the necessary environmental searches. This search usually includes a review of records and maps held by the local council. These can reveal any concerns relating to historic land use, current or previous planning activity and data about waste, landfill sites and pollution incidents within Barnet.