Frequently asked questions relating to Bargoed leasehold conveyancing
Estate agents have just been given the go-ahead to market my basement apartment in Bargoed.Conveyancing is yet to be initiated but I have just received a quarterly maintenance charge invoice – what should I do?
Your conveyancing lawyer is likely to suggest that you should 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 unless 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. Having a clear account will assist your cause and will leave you no worse off financially.
I today plan to offer on a house that seems to tick a lot of boxes, at a reasonable price which is making it more attractive. I have subsequently discovered that it's a leasehold rather than freehold. I would have thought that there are particular concerns purchasing a house with a leasehold title in Bargoed. Conveyancing solicitors have are soon to be instructed. Will my lawyers set out the implications of buying a leasehold house in Bargoed ?
The majority of houses in Bargoed are freehold and not leasehold. This is one of the situations where having a local conveyancer used to dealing with such properties who can assist with the conveyancing process. We note that you are buying in Bargoed in which case you should be looking for a Bargoed conveyancing solicitor and check that they are used to advising on leasehold houses. First you will need to check the unexpired lease term. As a tenant you will not be at liberty to do whatever you want to the property. The lease comes with conditions such as obtaining the freeholder’sconsent to conduct changes to the property. You may also be required to pay a contribution towards the maintenance of the communal areas where the property is located on an estate. Your lawyer will report to you on the legal implications.
I am a negotiator for a long established estate agent office in Bargoed where we see a number of flat sales jeopardised due to short leases. I have received inconsistent advice from local Bargoed conveyancing firms. Can you shed some light as to whether the seller of a flat can instigate 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 commence the lease extension process and assign the benefit of the notice to the purchaser. The benefit of this is that the proposed purchaser can avoid having 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 simultaneously with completion of the disposal of the property.
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 buyer.
What advice can you give us when it comes to finding a Bargoed conveyancing firm to carry out our lease extension conveyancing?
If you are instructing a property lawyer for lease extension works (regardless if they are a Bargoed conveyancing practice) it is imperative that they be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of conveyancing. We suggested that you make enquires with several firms including non Bargoed 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 helpful:
- If the firm is not ALEP accredited then why not?
In relation to leasehold conveyancing in Bargoed what are the most frequent lease defects?
There is nothing unique about leasehold conveyancing in Bargoed. All leases are unique and legal mistakes in the legal wording can sometimes mean that certain sections are erroneous. For example, if your lease is missing any of the following, it could be defective:
- Repairing obligations to or maintain parts of the property
- Insurance obligations
- 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 have a problem when selling your property if you have a defective lease as they can affect a potential buyer’s ability to obtain a mortgage. HSBC Bank, Barnsley Building Society, and Barclays Direct all have express requirements when it comes to what is expected in a lease. If a mortgage lender believes that the lease is problematic they may refuse to grant the mortgage, obliging the buyer to pull out.
Bargoed Leasehold Conveyancing - Examples of Questions you should consider Prior to buying
Best to be warned whether fixing the lift or some other significant cost is anticipated that will be shared amongst the tenants and will materially increase the the service charges or result in a specific payment.
If a Bargoed lease has less than 80 years it will impact the marketability of the apartment. Check with your lender that they are content with residual term of the lease. A short lease means that you will probably have to extend the lease sooner rather than later and it is worth finding out how much this would cost. For most Bargoedlease extensions you will be be obliged to have been the owner of the premises for two years before you are legally able to carry out a lease extension.
For many Bargoed leaseholds the outlay for major works are not wrapped into the service charges, albeit that there some managing agents in Bargoed obliged leasehold owners to contribute towards a sinking fund and this is used to offset against larger repairs or maintenance.