Fixed-fee leasehold conveyancing in Babbacombe:

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Recently asked questions relating to Babbacombe leasehold conveyancing

I own a leasehold house in Babbacombe. Conveyancing and The Mortgage Works mortgage are in place. I have received a letter from someone saying they have taken over the reversionary interest in the property. It included a ground rent demand for rent dating back to 1998. The conveyancing solicitor in Babbacombe who previously acted has now retired.What should I do?

First make enquiries of HMLR to make sure that the individual claiming to own the freehold is indeed the new freeholder. There is no need to incur the fees of a Babbacombe conveyancing practitioner to do this as it can be done on-line for a few pound. You should note that regardless, even if this is the legitimate landlord, under the Limitation Act 1980 the limitation period for recovery of ground rent is six years.

I am looking at a couple of apartments in Babbacombe which have approximately fifty years remaining on the leases. Do I need to be concerned?

There is no doubt about it. A leasehold apartment in Babbacombe is a wasting asset as a result of the shortening lease. The closer the lease gets to its expiry date, the more it adversely affects the value of the property. For most purchasers and banks, leases with under 75 years become less and less marketable. On a more positive note, leaseholders can extend their leases by serving a Section 42 Notice. One stipulation is that they must have owned the premises for two years (unlike a Section 13 notice for purchasing the freehold, when leaseholders can participate from day one of ownership). When successful, they will have the right to an extension of 90 years to the current term and ground rent is effectively reduced to zero. Before moving forward with a purchase of property with a short lease term remaining you should talk to a solicitor specialising in lease extensions and leasehold enfranchisement. We are are happy to put you in touch with Babbacombe conveyancing experts who will explain the options available to you during an initial telephone conversation free of charge. A more straightforward and quicker method of extending would be to contact your landlord directly and sound him out on the prospect of extending the lease You may find he or she is happy to negotiate informally and willing to consider your offer straight off, without having to involve anyone else. This will save you time and money and it could help you reach a lower price on the lease. You need to ensure that any new terms represent good long-term value compared with the standard benefits of the Section 42 Notice and that onerous clauses are not inserted into any redrafting of the lease.

I am a negotiator for a busy estate agency in Babbacombe where we have witnessed a number of leasehold sales jeopardised due to leases having less than 80 years remaining. I have received inconsistent advice from local Babbacombe conveyancing firms. Could you shed some light as to whether the vendor of a flat can instigate the lease extension formalities for the buyer?

Provided that the seller has been the owner for at least 2 years it is possible, to serve a Section 42 notice to 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 for a lease extension. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment has to be done prior to, or at the same time as completion of the sale.

An alternative approach is 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 purchaser.

Can you offer any advice when it comes to choosing a Babbacombe conveyancing practice to deal with our lease extension?

If you are instructing a conveyancer for lease extension works (regardless if they are a Babbacombe conveyancing firm) it is most important that he or she should be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of conveyancing. We recommend that you speak with several firms including non Babbacombe conveyancing practices before you instructing a firm. Where the conveyancing practice is ALEP accredited then that’s a bonus. Some following of questions might be of use:

  • If they are not ALEP accredited then why not?
  • Can they put you in touch with client in Babbacombe who can give a testimonial?

  • Can you provide any advice for leasehold conveyancing in Babbacombe from the perspective of saving time on the sale process?

    • A significant proportion of the delay in leasehold conveyancing in Babbacombe can be bypassed where you get in touch lawyers the minute your agents start marketing the property and ask them to put together the leasehold documentation needed by the buyers solicitors.
    • The majority freeholders or managing agents in Babbacombe levy fees for supplying management packs for a leasehold homes. You or your lawyers should discover the actual amount of the charges. The management information can be applied for as soon as you have a buyer, thus accelerating the process. The average time it takes to receive management information is three weeks. It is the most usual cause of delay in leasehold conveyancing in Babbacombe.
  • If you have carried out any alterations to the residence would they have required Landlord’s permission? Have you, for example installed wooden flooring? Babbacombe leases often stipulate that internal structural alterations or laying down wooden flooring necessitate a licence issued by the Landlord approving such changes. Should you dont have the approvals in place you should not contact the landlord without checking with your conveyancer first.
  • If there is a history of any disputes with your freeholder or managing agents it is very important that these are resolved before the property is marketed. The purchasers and their solicitors will be warry about purchasing a flat where there is an ongoing dispute. You will have to accept that you will have to pay any arrears of service charge or resolve the dispute prior to the buyers completing the purchase. It is therefore preferable to have any dispute settled ahead of the contract papers being issued to the buyers’ solicitors. You are still duty bound to disclose particulars of the dispute to the purchasers, but it is better to reveal the dispute as historic as opposed to ongoing.
  • If you hold a share in a the Management Company, you should ensure that you are holding the original share certificate. Organising a re-issued share certificate can be a lengthy formality and frustrates many a Babbacombe home move. Where a reissued share certificate is required, do contact the company officers or managing agents (if relevant) for this as soon as possible.

  • I am the registered owner of a garden flat in Babbacombe, conveyancing formalities finalised 3 years ago. Can you let me have an estimated range of the fair premium for a lease extension? Similar properties in Babbacombe with a long lease are worth £179,000. The average or mid-range amount of ground rent is £50 invoiced every year. The lease expires on 21st October 2091

    With only 67 years remaining on your lease we estimate the premium for your lease extension to range between £11,400 and £13,200 plus plus your own and the landlord's "reasonable" professional fees.

    The figure above a general guide to costs for extending a lease, but we cannot give you a more accurate figure in the absence of detailed due diligence. You should not use this information in a Notice of Claim or as an informal offer. There are no doubt other concerns that need to be taken into account and clearly you should be as accurate as possible in your negotiations. You should not move forward based on this information before seeking the advice of a professional.

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    Lease Extensions in Babbacombe