Yep. They're stuffy. You'll come across as a bureaucrat if you use them. They are not more professional - just poor communication and not plain English.
I've left out the worst ones, such as 'With reference to our recent correspondence...' because we would only send those to a colleague when we are kidding around - surely.
Utilise, utilisation (use)
Obtain (buy, collect, order, ask for)
Ascertain the location of (find)
I am writing to you regarding... (Thank you for your email about...)
In regard to (about)
It should be noted (Please note...)
Please advise (Please let me know)
Due to the fact that (because)
Please find attached (I've attached...or The attachment will tell you about...)
Prior to (before)
The above and the below (the Smith's application, the Smith's property)
Let me know your own suggestions. If I have included your favourite expressions and you are not satisfied with my alternatives, feel free to send me an indignant protest.