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We handle all types of transfers between friends, family, for divorce and for zero consideration.

Our transfer of equity solicitor costs are low and completions are in weeks, not months.

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Transfer of Equity Solicitors

(Last Updated: 08/02/2024)
8 min read
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Transferring the equity in your property is the process where existing legal owner/s are removing or adding a name to the legal title. Where a party is leaving it is known as Buying someone out of a jointly owned property.

The timescale to complete transferring equity is anywhere from 3 to 6 weeks, however, it can be slowed if:

  • you struggle to get lender consent to the change of legal ownership
  • there is a dispute over the amount the departing party is due
  • (if leasehold) you haven't paid your service charges/ground rent or the freehold managing agent is slow or absent.

After you complete it can take a number of months for the Land Registry to update the legal title. You need to file and pay for any tax due on the transfer - Do you pay tax on a transfer of equity?.

Summary of the Transfer of Equity Process

Transfer of Equity Process Diagram showing graphically people coming on an off the legal property title and what is involved

Start your process

Party Being Removed
Party Being Added
Party Being Removed
  • 1 Agree what % share the new owner has in the property and if paying any money for the equity
  • 2 Obtain consent from existing mortgage lender or get a new mortgage offer
  • 3 (if leasehold) Confirm freeholder notice and settle any ground rent or service charges due
  • 4 Completion takes place and (if applicable) money is transferred to buy the equity
  • 5 Post completion work including filing SDLT form and registration at the Land Registry to remove the name of the leaving party.
Party Being Added
  • 1 Agree what you are paying to buy the leaving party's equity
  • 2 Obtain consent from existing mortgage lender or get a new mortgage offer
  • 3 (if party being removed) Get an ID1 Form verified
  • 4 (if leasehold) Confirm freeholder notice and settle any ground rent or service charges due
  • 5 Completion takes place and (if applicable) money is transferred to buy the equity
  • 6 Post completion work including filing SDLT form and registration at the Land Registry to add the name of the new party.

Transfer of Equity Costs

  • Solicitors fees including ID checks, office copies
  • Land Registration fees
  • (if party being removed) ID1 Form verification fee
  • (if mortgage) Change of mortgage fee
  • (if leasehold) Notice fee to freeholder

On average a quote will cost in the region of £450 to £1,000 depending on which equity solicitors you choose to instruct, if the property is leasehold and if there is a mortgage.

Get a Fixed Fee Quote

If you have an existing mortgage registered over the legal title then you have 2 options available to you:

  • Obtain mortgage lender consent
  • Get a new mortgage
If you can't get mortgage lender consent and the party/ies are unable to afford the mortgage in just the new owner's names then you cannot complete the transfer.

Transfer of equity process

  • 1 Instruct a Solicitor

The parties remaining on the legal title instruct a solicitor to act on their behalf. Read more - What are the Transfer of Equity Costs?

For the party leaving the property, they will need to complete an ID1 form and have this witnessed. The witnesses can only be a solicitor, licensed conveyancer, notary public, barrister, CILEx Conveyancing Practitioner, Chartered Legal Executive Conveyancing Practitioner, Chartered Legal Executive, lawyer outside the UK, officer of the UK armed forces operating overseas or an employee at a Land Registry Office.

If you are paying consideration to the leaving owner, then your solicitor will need to confirm the source of the funds you are using (read this article on How to prove source of funds).

  • 2 Mortgage consent or mortgage offer

If you have an existing mortgage then you cannot remove the name of a legal owner from the property and mortgage without the consent of the mortgage lender.

If you are remortgaging then your mortgage lender issues their mortgage offer to your solicitor in the names of the new owners. Different mortgage lenders will have different requirements for their solicitor to adhere to. Whereas some won't ask the solicitor to do anything more than their obligations under the CML, some mortgage lenders request additional information to be provided to them before they will agree for the mortgage to be issued. For example, Paragon Mortgages require the solicitor to provide copies of planning permission, building regulations and rights of way, however Santander Plc doesn't require this.

  • 3 Completion and payment of Transfer of Equity Costs

The solicitor sends you a financial statement before completion detailing the legal fees and disbursements. This is an example of a costs statement for a transfer with an existing mortgage of £200,000 and £50,000 consideration:

Mortgage advance from new lender £250,000
Existing mortgage £200,000
Payment for equity to leaving party £50,000
SDLT payable at current rate £TBC
Solicitor Fee INC VAT and disbursements (this varies depending on the property value, if the property is leasehold and if there is a remortgage £599
Land Registry £45

Balance to complete excluding SDLT

Stamp Duty Calculator

Once your mortgage advance is received by your solicitor and you and your solicitor are ready to complete, then your solicitor will redeem your existing mortgage, pay the consideration due to the leaving owner, settle their invoice and any disbursements (online ID check, official copy costs and OS1/bankruptcy). The balance, if any, is then repaid to you. The only amounts left will relate to the Land Registry fees and any costs due to the property being a leasehold.

  • 4 Post completion

The process for discharging the old mortgage and registering the new mortgage/owners at the Land Registry can take between 1 to 6 months after completion. The time delay is linked to the Land Registry having a backlog of work. This can be extended further for leasehold properties if the freeholder/managing agent delays in releasing the notice.

Delays can be worsened if your service charge and/or ground rent are in arrears so make sure that you have settled these prior to remortgaging otherwise you may have a stand-off, with your freeholder not releasing your notice until your service charge account is settled (read more about What happens after completion).

Do you need a Transfer of Equity Solicitor?

We can handle the whole process in a matter of weeks with our panel of excellent-rated solicitors. We can help with:

  • Transfer of equity remortgage brokers
  • Transfer of Equity Solicitor
  • Separation Agreements
  • Gifted transfer for no consideration

Get in touch

Frequently Asked Questions
Andrew Boast of Sam Conveyancing
Written by:
Andrew started his career in 2000 working within conveyancing solicitor firms and grew hands-on knowledge of a wide variety of conveyancing challenges and solutions. After helping in excess of 50,000 clients in his career, he uses all this experience within his article writing for SAM, mainstream media and his self published book How to Buy a House Without Killing Anyone.
Caragh Bailey, Digital Marketing Manager
Reviewed by:

Caragh is an excellent writer in her own right as well as an accomplished copy editor for both fiction and non-fiction books, news articles and editorials. She has written extensively for SAM for a variety of conveyancing, survey and mortgage related articles.

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