Ashton leasehold conveyancing: Q and A’s
Having checked my lease I have discovered that there are only Fifty years remaining on my lease in Ashton. I need to get lease extension but my freeholder is missing. What options are available to me?
If you qualify, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can apply to the County Court for an order to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will enable the lease to be lengthened by the magistrate. However, you will be required to demonstrate that you have used your best endeavours to find the freeholder. On the whole a specialist would be useful to try and locate and prepare a report which can be accepted by the court as evidence that the freeholder is indeed missing. It is wise to seek advice from a solicitor in relation to investigating the landlord’s disappearance and the vesting order request to the County Court covering Ashton.
Last month I purchased a leasehold house in Ashton. Do I have any liability for service charges for periods before my ownership?
In a situation where the service charge has already been demanded from the previous owner and they have not paid you would not usually be personally liable for the arrears. However, your landlord may still be able to take action to forfeit the lease. It is an essential part of leasehold conveyancing for your conveyancer to ensure 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).
I am employed by a long established estate agency in Ashton where we have experienced a number of leasehold sales put at risk as a result of leases having less than 80 years remaining. I have received conflicting advice from local Ashton conveyancing solicitors. Please can you confirm whether the vendor of a flat can start the lease extension formalities for the purchaser on completion of the sale?
Provided that the seller has owned the lease for at least 2 years it is possible, to serve a Section 42 notice to kick-start the lease extension process and assign the benefit of the notice to the purchaser. The benefit of this is that the proposed purchaser need not have to wait 2 years to extend their lease. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment needs to be completed before, or at the same time as completion of the disposal of the property.
Alternatively, it may be possible to agree the lease extension with the freeholder either before or after the sale. If you are informally negotiating there are no rules and so you cannot insist on the landlord agreeing to grant an extension or transferring the benefit of an agreement to the buyer.
Can you offer any advice when it comes to appointing a Ashton conveyancing firm to deal with our lease extension?
If you are instructing a solicitor for your lease extension (regardless if they are a Ashton conveyancing firm) it is most important that he or she should be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of conveyancing. We suggested that you speak with two or three firms including non Ashton conveyancing practices prior to instructing a firm. If the firm is ALEP accredited then that’s a bonus. Some following of questions might be helpful:
- How experienced is the practice with lease extension legislation?
Completion in due on the disposal of our £400000 garden flat in Ashton next Monday . The freeholder has quoted £408 for Certificate of Compliance, insurance certificate and 3 years service charge statements. Is the landlord entitled to charge such fees for a flat conveyance in Ashton?
Ashton conveyancing on leasehold apartments usually necessitates fees being raised by managing agents :
- Answering conveyancing due diligence enquiries
- Where consent is required before sale in Ashton
- Supplying insurance information
- Deeds of covenant upon sale
- Registering of the assignment of the change of lessee after a sale
I am the registered owner of a 1 bedroom flat in Ashton, conveyancing having been completed half a dozen years ago. Can you let me have an estimate of the premium that my landlord can legally expect in return for granting a renewal of my lease? Equivalent flats in Ashton with over 90 years remaining are worth £205,000. The ground rent is £45 yearly. The lease ends on 21st October 2078
With 58 years unexpired the likely cost is going to range between £22,800 and £26,400 as well as costs.
The suggested premium range that we have given is a general guide to costs for renewing a lease, but we cannot give you a more accurate figure in the absence of detailed investigations. Do not use this information in a Notice of Claim or as an informal offer. There may be other issues that need to be taken into account and you obviously should be as accurate as possible in your negotiations. You should not take any other action based on this information without first seeking the advice of a professional.