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Top Five Questions relating to Altrincham leasehold conveyancing

I only have Sixty One years remaining on my lease in Altrincham. I now want to get lease extension but my landlord is absent. What should I do?

If you qualify, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can apply to the County Court for for permission to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will enable the lease to be lengthened by the magistrate. You will be obliged to demonstrate that you have done all that could be expected to track down the landlord. On the whole an enquiry agent should be helpful to try and locate and prepare an expert document which can be used as evidence that the freeholder is indeed missing. It is wise to seek advice from a property lawyer both on devolving into the landlord’s absence and the application to the County Court covering Altrincham.

I’m about to sell my ground floor flat in Altrincham.Conveyancing lawyers have not yet been instructed but I have just received a quarterly maintenance charge demand – Do I pay up?

Your conveyancing lawyer is likely to suggest that you should clear the service charge as normal because all ground rent and service charges will be apportioned on completion, so you will be reimbursed by the buyer for the period running from after the completion date to the next payment date. Most managing agents will not acknowledge the buyer until the service charges have been paid and are up to date so it is important for both buyer and seller for the seller to show that they are up to date. This will smooth the conveyancing process.

I own a leasehold house in Altrincham. Conveyancing and Clydesdale mortgage went though with no issue. I have received a letter from someone saying they have taken over the freehold. Attached was a demand for arrears of ground rent dating back to 1992. The conveyancing practitioner in Altrincham who previously acted has now retired.Do I pay?

First contact HMLR to make sure that this person is indeed the registered owner of the freehold reversion. You do not need to instruct a Altrincham conveyancing lawyer to do this as you can do this on the Land Registry website for less than a fiver. Rest assured that in any event, even if this is the rightful landlord, under the Limitation Act 1980 the limitation period for recovery of ground rent is six years.

Last month I purchased a leasehold house in Altrincham. Am I liable to pay service charges relating to a period prior to completion of my purchase?

Where the service charge has already been demanded from the previous lessee and they have not paid you would not usually be personally liable for the arrears. Strange as it may seem, your landlord may still be able to take action to forfeit the lease. A critical element of leasehold conveyancing for your conveyancer to be sure to have an up to date clear service charge receipt before completion of your purchase. If you have a mortgage this is likely to be a requirement of your lender.

If you purchase part way through an accounting year you may be liable for charges not yet demanded even if they relate to a period prior to your purchase. In such circumstances your conveyancer would normally arrange for the seller to set aside some money to cover their part of the period (usually called a service charge retention).

What advice can you give us when it comes to finding a Altrincham conveyancing practice to carry out our lease extension conveyancing?

When appointing a property lawyer for your lease extension (regardless if they are a Altrincham conveyancing firm) it is most important that they be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of conveyancing. We suggested that you talk with two or three firms including non Altrincham conveyancing practices before you instructing a firm. Where the conveyancing practice is ALEP accredited then so much the better. Some following of questions could be helpful:

  • How experienced is the practice with lease extension legislation?
  • What are the charges for lease extension work?

  • I acquired a basement flat in Altrincham, conveyancing having been completed 6 years ago. Can you work out an approximate cost of a lease extension? Similar properties in Altrincham with over 90 years remaining are worth £253,000. The ground rent is £45 levied per year. The lease finishes on 21st October 2075

    With only 55 years remaining on your lease the likely cost is going to span between £29,500 and £34,000 plus legals.

    The suggested premium range above a general guide to costs for extending a lease, but we are not able to advice on a more accurate figure in the absence of comprehensive due diligence. Do not use this information in a Notice of Claim or as an informal offer. There are no doubt other issues that need to be considered and you obviously want to be as accurate as possible in your negotiations. Please do not move forward placing reliance on this information before seeking the advice of a professional.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Altrincham