Aston leasehold conveyancing: Q and A’s
Estate agents have just been given the go-ahead to market my garden apartment in Aston.Conveyancing solicitors are to be appointed soon but I have just had a quarterly maintenance charge demand – what should I do?
It best that you discharge the invoice 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 am hoping to put an offer on a small detached house that seems to tick a lot of boxes, at a great figure which is making it all the more appealing. I have subsequently found out that it's a leasehold as opposed to freehold. I am assuming that there are particular concerns buying a leasehold house in Aston. Conveyancing lawyers have not yet been appointed. Will they explain the issues?
Most houses in Aston are freehold and not leasehold. In this scenario it’s worth having a local solicitor used to dealing with such properties who can help the conveyancing process. We note that you are buying in Aston in which case you should be shopping around for a Aston conveyancing solicitor and check that they have experience in advising on leasehold houses. First you will need to check the unexpired lease term. Being a tenant you will not be entirely free to do whatever you want to the property. The lease comes with conditions for example requiring the freeholder’sconsent to conduct alterations. You may also be required to pay a maintenance charge towards the maintenance of the communal areas where the property is part of an estate. Your solicitor should report to you on the legal implications.
I've recently bought a leasehold house in Aston. Do I have any liability for service charges relating to a period prior to my ownership?
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. It is an essential part 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 Aston conveyancing firm to deal with our lease extension?
When appointing a solicitor for lease extension works (regardless if they are a Aston conveyancing practice) it is imperative that he or she should be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of work. We advise that you talk with several firms including non Aston conveyancing practices prior to instructing a firm. Where the conveyancing practice is ALEP accredited then that’s a bonus. Some following of questions could be of use:
- How familiar is the firm with lease extension legislation?
In relation to leasehold conveyancing in Aston what are the most frequent lease problems?
Leasehold conveyancing in Aston is not unique. All leases is drafted differently and drafting errors can sometimes mean that certain sections are erroneous. The following missing provisions could result in a defective lease:
- Repairing obligations to or maintain elements of the property
- A duty to insure the building
- A provision for the recovery of money spent for the benefit of another party.
- Service charge per centages that don't add up correctly leaving a shortfall
You may encounter a problem when selling your property if you have a defective lease primarily because it impacts on the ability to obtain a mortgage on the property. Birmingham Midshires, Barnsley Building Society, and Platform Home Loans Ltd all have express conveyancing instructions when it comes to what is expected in a lease. If a mortgage lender believes that the lease is problematic they may refuse to provide security, obliging the buyer to withdraw.
I acquired a studio flat in Aston, conveyancing was carried out half a dozen years ago. Can you work out an approximate cost of a lease extension? Similar properties in Aston with a long lease are worth £230,000. The ground rent is £45 yearly. The lease expires on 21st October 2097
You have 74 years unexpired we estimate the premium for your lease extension to span between £10,500 and £12,000 as well as plus your own and the landlord's "reasonable" professional fees.
The suggested premium range that we have given is a general guide to costs for extending a lease, but we cannot give you a more accurate figure without more detailed due diligence. You should not use this information in a Notice of Claim or as an informal offer. There may be other concerns that need to be considered and you obviously want to be as accurate as possible in your negotiations. Neither should you move forward placing reliance on this information without first seeking the advice of a professional.