Guaranteed fixed fees for Leasehold Conveyancing in Beacontree Heath

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Frequently asked questions relating to Beacontree Heath leasehold conveyancing

Frank (my husband) and I may need to sub-let our Beacontree Heath garden flat for a while due to a new job. We instructed a Beacontree Heath conveyancing practice in 2004 but they have closed and we did not have the foresight to get any advice as to whether the lease prohibits the subletting of the flat. How do we find out?

Some leases for properties in Beacontree Heath do contain a provision to say that subletting is only allowed with permission. The landlord cannot unreasonably withhold but, in such cases, they would need to review references. Experience dictates that problems are usually caused by unsatisfactory tenants rather than owner-occupiers and for that reason you can expect the freeholder to take up the references and consider them carefully before granting permission.

I only have Sixty One years unexpired on my flat in Beacontree Heath. I need to get lease extension but my landlord is absent. What should I do?

If you meet the appropriate requirements, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can submit an application to the County Court for an order to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will mean that your lease can be extended by the Court. You will be obliged to prove that you or your lawyers have made all reasonable attempts to find the freeholder. On the whole a specialist should be helpful to try and locate and to produce an expert document which can be accepted by the court as proof that the landlord is indeed missing. It is wise to seek advice from a property lawyer in relation to proving the landlord’s disappearance and the application to the County Court overseeing Beacontree Heath.

I've found a house that appears to meet my requirements, at a great price which is making it all the more appealing. I have subsequently found out that the title is leasehold as opposed to freehold. I am assuming that there are issues buying a house with a leasehold title in Beacontree Heath. Conveyancing lawyers have not yet been instructed. Will my lawyers set out the implications of buying a leasehold house in Beacontree Heath ?

Most houses in Beacontree Heath are freehold and not leasehold. In this scenario it’s worth having a local solicitor who is familiar with the area can help the conveyancing process. It is clear that you are purchasing in Beacontree Heath in which case you should be shopping around for a Beacontree Heath conveyancing solicitor and check that they have experience in transacting on leasehold houses. As a matter of priority you will need to check the number of years remaining. Being a lessee you will not be at liberty to do whatever you want to the property. The lease comes with conditions such as obtaining the freeholder’spermission to conduct changes to the property. It may be necessary to pay a contribution towards the maintenance of the communal areas where the property is located on an estate. Your solicitor should report to you on the legal implications.

I work for a long established estate agent office in Beacontree Heath where we have experienced a number of leasehold sales jeopardised due to leases having less than 80 years remaining. I have received contradictory information from local Beacontree Heath conveyancing firms. Please can you confirm whether the seller of a flat can initiate the lease extension formalities for the purchaser on completion of the sale?

Provided that the seller has been the owner 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. This means that the proposed purchaser need not have to sit tight for 2 years for a lease extension. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment needs to be completed prior to, or at the same time as 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.

Do you have any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in Beacontree Heath with the purpose of saving time on the sale process?

  • Much of the delay in leasehold conveyancing in Beacontree Heath can be bypassed if you instruct lawyers the minute your agents start marketing the property and request that they start to collate the leasehold information which will be required by the buyers lawyers.
  • The majority landlords or Management Companies in Beacontree Heath charge for providing management packs for a leasehold homes. You or your lawyers should enquire as to the fee that they propose to charge. The management pack can be applied for on or before finding a buyer, thus reducing delays. The typical amount of time it takes to obtain the necessary information is three weeks. It is the most usual cause of delay in leasehold conveyancing in Beacontree Heath.
  • In the event that you altered the property did you need the Landlord’s permission? In particular have you laid down wooden flooring? Beacontree Heath leases often stipulate that internal structural changes or installing wooden flooring necessitate a licence issued by the Landlord consenting to such works. Should you fail to have the paperwork in place do not contact the landlord without checking with your conveyancer in the first instance.
  • A minority of Beacontree Heath leases require Licence to Assign from the landlord. If this is the case, it would be prudent to notify your estate agents to make sure that the purchasers put in hand financial (bank) and professional references. The bank reference should make it clear that the buyer is financially capable of paying the annual service charge and the actual amount of the service charge should be quoted in the bank’s letter. You will therefore need to provide your estate agents with the actual amount of the service charge so that they can pass this information on to the buyers or their lawyers.
  • You believe that you know the number of years left on your lease but you should double-check via your lawyers. A purchaser's conveyancer will not be happy to advise their client to to exchange contracts if the lease term is less than 75 years. It is therefore essential at an as soon as possible that you consider whether the lease term requires a lease extension. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your property on the market for sale.

  • Having spent months of negotiations we cannot agree with our landlord on how much the lease extension should cost for our flat in Beacontree Heath. Can we issue an application to the Residential Property Tribunal Service?

    Absolutely. We can put you in touch with a Beacontree Heath conveyancing firm who can help.

    An example of a Lease Extension decision for a Beacontree Heath premises is 49 Aldborough Road South in July 2012. The Tribunal decided that the premium payable for the grant of the new lease was £13,925 This case related to 1 flat. The the number of years remaining on the existing lease(s) was 61.36 years.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Beacontree Heath