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Apprenticeships, conveyancer, Conveyancing, Conveyancing Quote, employees, young people    No Comments

Corey Else began his career as an apprentice at Fidler & Pepper Lawyers. So how has it been so far, and would he recommend apprenticeships for everyone?

I chose an apprenticeship over college because I knew I didn’t want to be stuck behind a desk for another two to four years. I wanted something more proactive where I could also be earning a wage. After finishing school, the idea of then going on to college just wasn’t something that interested me.

I originally wanted an apprenticeship in Business Admin but then I came across Fidler & Pepper, and even though I wasn’t looking for an apprenticeship in the legal sector, I fell on my feet as I now love what I do. The firm has a good local reputation so I was excited to be considered and then just had so many opportunities to learn and develop.

At Fidler & Pepper Lawyers you may start in office admin but can have the opportunity to work in Private Client, IT, Accounts, reception, or Conveyancing. In Conveyancing you could work in New Business, then transfer to support a team, then have your own caseload.

People think to do well in law you need a law degree but this isn’t the case and college/university isn’t for everyone so it’s great that you can work and learn and progress.

Fidler & Pepper is a very supportive firm, especially with their apprentices – ensuring that they receive the training and time to enable them to develop within their roles or move onto other roles.

We have one-to-one training, workshops, quizzes to support with training, group training sessions – all of which are equally important. Fidler & Pepper is a modern company that wants to grow its own staff and give people such great opportunities. We have flexi-time, fruit delivered, pizza days – in fact, it’s just a great place to work.

I worked in office admin as an apprentice and soon moved on to Post Completion – helping to set up a team. I then worked supporting teams learning all aspects of Conveyancing.  I then worked closely with a Fee Earner with my own caseload as an Assistant.

Since last December, I have had a caseload as a Trainee Fee Earner and am currently studying to become a Conveyancing Technician. Once qualified, in March, I will then go on to start my training to become a Licenced Conveyancer. My aim over time would be to be working with our biggest referrers and helping to develop our positive relationships with them.

I don’t know if an apprenticeship would suit everybody, but it has suited me. And I do know that if someone wants to progress well in their career, Fidler & Pepper genuinely provides a really good career path.

To find out about our current job opportunities, take a look at our current vacancies

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Beginners Guides, Contract, conveyancer, Conveyancing, Conveyancing Quote, First Time Buyers, help to buy, help to buy ISA    No Comments

The hugely successful Help to Buy Equity Loan Scheme has had a two year extension with a new and improved scheme announced to be in development 2021-2023.

The Chancellor, in his budget last week revealed that the scheme; which provides government loans of up to 20% equity to buyers of new build properties, has been extended for a further two year period until his new scheme is put in place in 2021.  Fidler and Pepper’s New build team can vouch for its popularity themselves with over half their transactions involving help to buy assistance. We are not surprised that the scheme is being continued as it has proved popular with first time buyers and existing home owners alike.  It also comes as no surprise that the proposed 2021 changes for the new scheme involve limiting the loans only to first time buyers, who under the current rules, could be being pushed out by existing home owners looking to upsize.

The new scheme will also address the north/south divide in terms of house pricing and effectively making sure the scheme is only used by those who will really benefit from it. The focus is on getting rid of the one size fits all limits currently in place by  introducing a regional cap based on location with London staying at  the £600,000 cap currently in place but the East Midlands (where our offices are based) reducing to just £261,900. Though let’s face it that’s still a pretty nice first house here in Mansfield!

Good ol’ Phil also announced a cut in stamp duty for first time buyers of shared ownership homes with a zero stamp duty payable on the first £300,000 on any shared ownership home that costs up to £500,000 with immediate effect, which brings this in line with the November 2017 changes for non-shared ownership properties.

The icing on this first time buyer layer cake? A promise to help fund a further 650,000 additional houses!

First time Buyers – rejoice!

Conveyancers – forget about that post-Christmas lull;  keep calm, carry on!

If you are looking for a competitive Conveyancing quote then simply visit our website for a quote in seconds or give us a call on 01623 45 11 11.

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conveyancer, Conveyancing, Conveyancing Quote, First Time Buyers, Lifetime ISA, LISA    No Comments

You might not have heard about the governments newest ISA scheme even though it’s been around since April 2017.

A Lifetime ISA or “LISA” is used for saving for “Lifetime Events” which include buying your first home.

The account itself attracts the standard tax free interest but in addition, you get you get a 25% government bonus on the money you save.

Here’s a quick Fidler & Pepper style round up of the scheme

It’s an 18-40s club

You have to be aged 18-39 to open a lifetime ISA, so if you’re old enough to remember life before mobile phones or you don’t know what Love Island is, then you probably need to get your skates on.

You don’t have to buy a house with it

If you decide not to buy a house, you can save the money for what the scheme deems as the only other “lifetime event” – retirement. So forget using it for marriage, children or a one in a lifetime trip to the Bahamas…

Don’t aim too high

If you’re lucky enough to be able to afford to buy a first home that costs more than £450,000 the scheme deems you too rich to take advantage of the scheme

 Double up!
You and you’re other half can both have Lifetime ISA accounts both benefitting from the bonus

There’s a limit

You can only save a maximum of £4,000 per year which would earn you a £1,000 bonus

 You can’t get at the money

If you withdraw any money from the account for any other reason besides your lifetime events you will incur huge penalties, so once it’s in, you need to forget it’s there – Out of sight out of mind!

There are conditions

The house must…

  • be in the UK
  • be the first home you own
  • be purchased with a mortgage (i.e. not cash)
  • cost £450,000 or less
  • be your main residence

and

  • The LISA account must have been open for at last 12 months

 

Our IT crowd have been busy updating all our internal systems to make cashing in your LISA a piece of cake so all you need to do it let us know you have an account and we will organise the rest!

If you’re looking for a competitive Conveyancing quote and an experienced team of people who are there to help (without the legal jargon) then simply give us a call on 01623 45 11 11 or to get a quote in seconds click here.

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Beginners Guides, Contract, conveyancer, Conveyancing, Conveyancing Quote, First Time Buyers, help to buy, help to buy ISA, ISA    No Comments

Matt Slade – Fidler & Pepper Partner and Head of Conveyancing.

Whilst we’re not the type of firm who likes to blow their own trumpet, we’re pleased to mark an important milestone as we complete our 2,000th purchase involving the innovative Help To Buy schemes!

We began acting for Help To Buy purchases in 2015, with Help To Buy ISAs being dealt with from February 2016.

Help to Buy is a Government-backed scheme that sees people being offered a loan up to 20 per cent of the cost of a newly-built home.

A Help to Buy ISA is a type of savings scheme that was created to help first-time buyers save for a deposit for their home. The government gives savers a helping hand to boost their savings in order to help them get onto the housing ladder.

Our Matt Slade, head of the Conveyancing department, said, “When it was first launched back in December 2015, it was an attractive scheme to prospective first time buyers. It effectively made saving for a deposit more attractive at a time when the tightening of lending criteria could have negatively affected the market, providing a necessary boost at just the right time. The take-up of the ISA accounts has steadily increased and it is fair to say that it has been a great way for people to get on the property ladder.”

There is a set of guidelines that govern how Help To Buy ISA schemes can be used

For instance, the government boosts savings by 25 per cent, and people can save up to £200 per month. The maximum bonus people can claim is £3,000, so to get the best bonus people would need to save £12,000. The house that people want to purchase using the scheme  must cost a maximum of £250,000 (or £450,000 in London).

You can still take advantage and benefit!

Help To Buy ISA schemes will end in November 2019, meaning that they are still available but you will have to move quickly to take advantage of them. If you’re interested in the Help To Buy Scheme and have any questions or you would like a Conveyancing quote then visit our website or call 01623 45 11 11.

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Auctions, Beginners Guides, Boundary Disputes, Contract, conveyancer, Conveyancing, Conveyancing Quote, First Time Buyers, flipping, full structural survey, help to buy, help to buy ISA, Property Auctions, Property Market, property owner, Property Report, property searches, Quicker conveyancing, restrictive covenants, searches, signing contracts    No Comments

When we talk about ‘flipping’ we’re not talking abut pancakes! We mean buying a fixer-upper to do up and ‘flip’  (do it up and sell it at a higher price to make a profit) to boost your savings. But it’s important to remember that you have a lot to think about before you go ahead and buy a property to ‘flip’. There may be some obstacles in your way…

Do You Need Planning Consent?

If you’re planning to extend then you should check before you buy that you can get the planning consent you need for the work you want to do.  Often small extensions and conservatories don’t need planning consent, but if some extension works have already been done or your planned extension is large then you will still require planning consent from the Local Authority.  It’s always best to check this before entering into any Contract, especially if your purchase is based on being able to extend. You should also think about the costs of applying for planning consent.

If the property is a listed building, a conservation area or in an area where development rights have been restricted, then there may be even more hoops to jump through!

Building Regulations – Do You Know What Needs Sign Off?

Structural work to a property needs to comply with building regulations. There are costs of getting your plans approved from the Local Authority and extra costs for building inspectors to sign off the work once it’s completed. You’ll also need a Completion Certificate which legally confirms that building regulations rules have been complied with. As well as extensions you also need a building regulations certificate of compliance for electrical installation, gas installations, new double glazing, removals of chimney breast, removals of internal (supporting) walls and re-roofing.

What Are Restrictive Covenants? 

Even if you have the planning consent and the building regulations you need, you could still be prevented from extending or altering the property under a Restrictive Covenant. A Covenant is a legal promise in the Deeds to the property which can be enforced by a developer, a council or even owners of neighboring properties.  A Covenant can apply to modern or very old properties.

Covenants can prevent new owners making any changes to the property and owners can be sued for doing something that breaches it. It’s common for there to be a Covenant about adding a new building or extending or altering any existing building on the property without the consent of the original developer. Failure to apply for consent under the Covenant could result in the owners being taken to court, being forced to pay a fine, having to return the property to its original state or delays selling the property. Your Conveyancer who will be able to tell you whether there is any risk of breaching a Covenant in the property.

If You Have Questions About ‘Flipping’, Don’t Get In A Flap – Get In Touch 

If you’re a first time ‘flipper’ or are thinking of buying a property that have a Restrictive Covenant, then we can help you. Simply call 01623 45 11 11. For more about our Conveyancing services or an instant quote visit our website.

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Auctions, Case Tracker, Contract, conveyancer, Conveyancing, Conveyancing Quote, Do your own conveyancing, First Time Buyers, house buyers report and inspection, Property, Property Auctions, Property Market, property owner, Property Report, property searches, purchase, searches, Stamp duty, survey    No Comments

There are a great number of benefits to buying a property at auction such as a quick completion time and often the chance of getting a property at a very cheap price. However, it’s essential that you think carefully about what will happen when buying an auction property. Make sure that you go in with all of the information you need and above all don’t get caught up in the excitement of the auction house!

There’s a lot of things to think about – make sure you do your homework!

Have you seen the property?

Don’t be tempted to make a purchase on a whim if it seems like a bargain. It is so important to view the property first and to also obtain a survey on the house to establish if there are any structural issues which could affect value or your ability to get a mortgage. There could also be a tenant occupying the property which may complicate matters for you, or the property could be located in an area which may make it difficult to sell or rent. Doing your homework first will help you to avoid problems later on.

Do you have the money?

If you succeed at the auction you will need to exchange contracts immediately and pay a deposit there and then. This is usually 10 per cent of the price of the property. You will also be required to complete the purchase within a time limit, usually around 4 weeks from the date of the auction. Once you have exchanged contacts, you are legally bound to buy the property and if you don’t complete within the stipulated period, you may lose your deposit. Be sure you have all your funds available and if you are buying with a mortgage, that you have at least your mortgage in principal in place before you attend the auction. A delay on any of your funds prove a costly mistake.

Have you read the legal pack and spoken to a specialist Conveyancer?

Each property at auction has a legal pack and this contains all the information you would obtain through your solicitor when completing the purchase of a property through the usual channels. You should obtain the legal pack before the auction and ask your Conveyancer to review it for you so they can highlight any difficult areas. This could include title issues and items revealed in the searches which may affect the value of the property and often small print which makes you responsible for the seller’s legal fees or other costs. Being aware of these issues before bidding on a property is critical!

If you want to go ahead – your Solicitor will contact the auctioneers to get the legal pack and give you a report on the contents for a fixed fee. If you then are successful at auction can be deducted from the full legal fee for purchasing of the property.

Get in touch – we’re here to help

If you are interested in purchasing a property at auction and want some legal advice simply call us on 01623 45 11 11 for further information and an instant quote.

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Beginners Guides, Case Tracker, Contract, conveyancer, Conveyancing, Conveyancing Quote, First Time Buyers, help to buy, leasehold, Leasehold Conveyancing Quote, Probate, Property Market, property searches, sale, searches, signing contracts, Uncategorized, Wills    No Comments

Happy New Year to you! Thinking about the year ahead?

As we step into a New Year, it can be a time of reflection. After
celebrating and spending time with family over Christmas, you might be
thinking about what the future will hold.

Should your New Years Resolution be to get your affairs in order?

Regardless of your age, planning ahead and putting your wishes in place will
provide peace of mind for you and your loved ones. That will certainly lift
those January blues, when the highs of Christmas are over. Creating a Will
or a Power of Attorney may seem like an odd way to shake away the January
blues, but you could be ensuring the future of your loved ones – whatever
your wishes, will be granted.

Could 2018 be the year that you buy your dream home?

Maybe you’ve been thinking of moving house and 2018 might be
the year to take action. Once you find that perfect property, we can
certainly help you with the legal side of things. Our specialist,
Conveyancing team will look after the legal (and sometimes stressful) side
of your move. We work to get things moving for you, whilst you can get on
with packing your boxes and choosing your wallpaper! Our experienced and
award-winning Conveyancing team will manage everything from searches,
deposits and signing contracts, to Exchange and final Completion. Fidler &
Pepper have a dedicated team and we’ll keep you updated 24/7 with our
secure, online case tracker.

Need a helping hand or a chat with one of our team?

If you’d like to get your affairs in order or have plans to buy, sell or
remortgage your property then come and see one of our specialist team.
Alternatively, you can give us a call on 01623 45 11 11 or visit www.fidler.co.uk

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Beginners Guides, conveyancer, Conveyancing, Conveyancing Quote, Japanese Knotweed, Property, Property Market, Quicker conveyancing    No Comments

What Is Japanese Knotweed?

Japanese Knotweed (Fallopia japonica) has reared its ugly head in the news again lately reminding us all of the terrible problems this weed can cause for homeowners. This troublesome plant is renowned for growing at a ridiculous rate of up to 10-20cm a day during the summer months and is classed as an invasive species in the UK. Left untreated the roots of Japanese knotweed can be considered a risk to the structural integrity of a building, mortgage lenders are very wary of it, prospective buyers may not get a mortgage and it can sometimes make the property unsellable.

It’s A Serious Business!

Due to its fast growing and destructive nature, it is an offence under Section 14(2) of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 to plant or cause it to grow. It is also classed as controlled waste and requires specialist disposal to prevent spreading; substantial fines or even prison sentences can handed to people disposing of the weed irresponsibly if it results in a spread in the wild.

What Happens If You Want To Sell Your Property?

Although it is not illegal to have Japanese knotweed growing in your garden, you are under a legal duty to disclose it when you sell. Not disclosing it would be classed as a misrepresentation and a buyer can take a seller to court for compensation if its proved the sellers deliberately withheld information or tried to hide its existence.

Don’t despair…

If you think your house is affected by Knotweed, it can be treated effectively. It has a large underground network of roots which need to be destroyed to kill the plant using chemicals, although it can take up to five years to be totally eliminated.

Contact a specialist

If you discover your property is affected , you will need to contact a Japanese Knotweed specialist who will be able to assist with a Management Plan. This plan can be submitted to Mortgage Lenders and Valuers and often assists in gaining lending that may otherwise have not been offered. In addition, on advice from the Institute of Chartered Surveyors many larger lenders have relaxed their rules as some evidence suggests that surveyors have been unsure of how to assess the risk of Japanese knotweed, resulting in inconsistent valuations.

Get In Touch 

If you have question about this issue or would like a Conveyancing quote – please give our specialist team a call on 01623 45 11 11.

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Beginners Guides, Case Tracker, Conveyancing, Conveyancing Quote, First Time Buyers, Stamp duty, Stamp Duty    No Comments

The 2017 Budget announced that First Time Buyers won’t have to pay Stamp Duty when buying a home costing up to £300,000! Plus if you’re lucky enough to be a first time buyer purchasing for more than £300,000 (up to £500,000), you won’t pay Stamp Duty on the first £300,000.

Even better, the change is effective immediately, so any existing clients who haven’t yet completed their purchase won’t be paying the tax. If you haven’t yet paid for your fees, you’ll not be asked for Stamp Duty and if you have, you’ll receive a refund for your completion day.

A great saving for first time buyers who can now use the extra pennies on their new home or at Christmas!

If you’re moving house don’t forget to get in touch and we can give you a Conveyancing quote in seconds! Just visit our website or call us on 01623 45 11 11.

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Barratt Homes, Case Tracker, Change conveyancer, Change solicitor, Contract, conveyancer, Conveyancing, Conveyancing Quote, Do your own conveyancing, First Time Buyers, help to buy, help to buy ISA, House Prices, management companies, Property, Property Market, Property Report, signing contracts, Uncategorized    No Comments

When Would You Need To Pay A Management Company?

Some properties may have extra land surrounding them, such as a shared access, a park or just a simple piece of additional green land, which makes the surrounding area look more attractive. These areas are often maintained by Management Companies and you may be asked to pay a fee to help look after these areas. When you are buying or selling a property we may need to do some extra legal work, there may be some extra fees and delays to get this information in order.

Who Is Responsible?

The question which you may not always consider is who is going to be responsible for the maintenance and upkeep of this extra piece of land? The local authorities are reluctant to carry this out as they are already responsible for the upkeep of most roads and public spaces and therefore developers often outsource this responsibility and the cost to Management Companies.

The cost of the administration of these Companies and the works they have to carry out in order to maintain these extra pieces of land are usually shared between all the owners of the properties who use or benefit from these additional areas of land. This is usually referred to in the deeds of your property as a “rent charge”, “service charge” or an “estate rent” is another term used.

How Do You Find Out If you Have To Pay Extra Charges?

Often these extra charges will not come to light until your Solicitor is sent the deeds to the property, which could be a few weeks into the sale or purchase. The Solicitor acting for you and the Management Company may charge you extra fees for carrying out the additional work involved in the Conveyancing process and also after you’ve completed your sale or purchase. Your Solicitor will be working hard to get the right information from the Management Company as without this it can cause you delays.

Be Informed – Ask Questions And Give Information

If you’re buying – make sure you ask the current owner or the estate agents if there is any communal land which they pay extra fees to a Management Company for. This will then avoid any problems along the way of purchasing a new property.

If you’re selling – give this information to the buyer and estate agents. Also, get in touch with the Management Company as soon as the sale is agreed to pay for the Management Pack, which answers a list of queries your buyer’s Solicitors will need to know in order to avoid any delays.

Get In Touch

We have an experienced and specialist Conveyancing team used to dealing with all of the bit and bobs that happen in the Conveyancing process. We’d be happy to answer any questions you may have. If you’d like a quote for moving house then visit www.fidler.co.uk or call us on 01623 45 11 11.

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