How much does it cost to move house?

Whether you’re moving home for the first or umpteenth time, it’s good to know how much it will cost.

How much does it cost to move house?

The average cost of moving home in the UK is just over £10,000, or just under £25,000 if you’re moving to London, according to Which?

 

There are plenty of costs to factor in when you’re putting together a budget for moving house. You’ll need to pay upfront fees, stamp duty and legal expenses. There are also payments closer to your moving date, from the removal van to redirecting your mail.

 

Discover the costs associated with moving house to start planning your budget.

What you pay for when you move house

Here’s a breakdown of the costs you’ll need to cover and when you’ll need to pay them:

Deposit and mortgage fees

You will usually need to provide a deposit to get a mortgage for a property. This ranges from a minimum of 5%, but a low deposit can make it harder to get a mortgage. A deposit of 15% or more of the property value might give you a better chance of being accepted.

If you’re moving house, you’ll be able to use the equity from your first home to go towards your next deposit.

If you’re buying a much more expensive house, you might need to save extra to cover the difference.

You’ll also need to pay any fees to set up your mortgage. You can either pay these upfront or add them onto your mortgage.

 

Stamp Duty

After your mortgage fees and deposit, Stamp Duty is likely to be your highest cost when moving home.

Until 30th June 2021, if you're moving house in England and Northern Ireland, you will not have to pay Stamp Duty on the first £500,000 of a property's purchase price. This then reduces to £250,000 from 1st July until 30th September 2021.

If your purchase isn't complete on or before these dates, you'll need to pay Stamp Duty at the usual rate, where it applies.

The rules and rate of tax differ for first time buyers and if you live in Scotland or Wales. You'll find all this information in our comprehensive guide to Stamp Duty.

 

Conveyancing, surveyor and valuation costs

Just like the first time you bought a house, you’ll need help from a conveyancer to sort out the legal bits. This can cost around £1,5001. You can use our Halifax conveyancing service to compare quotes for your legal costs from our panel of up to 200 conveyancers.

Your lender will also need to carry out a valuation of the home you’re buying. This is to check the property is worth the agreed sale price and doesn’t have any issues that will affect its value. This can cost between £150 and £1,5002, depending on the value of the property.

As well as the valuation for your lender, you will probably want to get a survey for yourself when you’re moving house. This can help you find out any issues with the building – including any faults or repairs that you might need to carry out.

A good surveyor can cost from £450 to £1,5003, but any issues highlighted could help you lower the asking price of the property.

 

Other costs

Estate agent fees – If you’re selling your house, you’ll need to pay the estate agent for organising the sale. This is often 1% to 3%4 of the sale, plus 20% VAT.

Electronic transfer fee – A standard £40 to £50 charge for transferring your mortgage loan from the lender over to your solicitor.

Moving day payments

You’ve got your keys, picked your moving date and are ready to start making memories in your new home. But you’ll still have a few more things to pay for before you can put your feet up.  

Removal costs

Removal costs will vary depending on whether you want to handle it yourself or pay for a removal company to do the heavy lifting.

 

Hiring a van and sorting out the move yourself can be cheaper, but removal companies might take away some of the hassle on moving day.

 

Mail redirection

Redirecting your mail can give you a bit of breathing space from the stress of moving. With Royal Mail, you can redirect your post for three, six or twelve months while you ensure everyone has your change of address. This includes if you’re moving overseas.

 

A breakdown of the costs can be found on the Royal Mail website.

Other considerations:

  • Storage – Sometimes there’s a gap between handing over your keys and moving in. This means you may need a place to store your stuff for the time being. The fees for this depend on how much space you need but can reach around £25 to £100 a week5.
  • Packing materials – When packing up your home, you’ll need boxes, bubble wrap, tape and labels. This can add up to £1006.
  • Cleaning – You’ll want to leave your old home in good condition for the new owners. You might want to have your new house cleaned too. Hiring a cleaner to do a deep clean can cost between £100 to £3507.
  • Care – The day of the move can be manic, so it may be worth finding childcare for your little ones. Childcare for the day can cost between £40 and £708.
  • Pets – If you have a pet, you’ll probably want to get moved in before you’re reunited. A kennel or cattery is around £10 to £20 per day9. Or see if a friend or relative can watch your pet for a day.
  • Building management fees – If you’re buying a flat, you may have to pay towards the maintenance of the communal areas, like hallways and gardens. The fees can vary, so be sure to ask when you’re viewing a flat. 

Recurring charges

While the regular costs of a home may come after your moving day, it’s good to start planning and organising as soon as possible. This includes: 

  • Bills – Send a meter reading for your last bill as soon as you hand the keys over to the new owners. Then, take a meter reading in your new home to send to your new providers so you’re only charged for what you use. 
  • Council tax – You’ll need to let your local council know your change of address. If you’re moving to a new council district, you’ll need to register with them to get your bill. 
  • Insurance – You’ll need Buildings Insurance if you own a house. It’s also a good idea to get Contents Insurance. You may be able to move your insurance over to your new house or you can set up a new policy. Contact your existing insurance company if you have one to see what they offer.

The content on this page is for reference and does not constitute financial advice. For impartial financial advice, we recommend government bodies like the Money Advice Service.

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