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Birkenhead leasehold conveyancing: Q and A’s

Due to complete next month on a ground floor flat in Birkenhead. Conveyancing solicitors assured me that they are sending me a report on Monday. What should I be looking out for?

The report on title for your leasehold conveyancing in Birkenhead should include some of the following:

  • How long the lease is You should be advised as what happens when the lease expires, and aware of the importance of the 80 year mark
  • Do you need to have carpet in the flat or are you allowed wood flooring?
  • Are pets allowed in the flat?
  • You must be told what constitutes a Nuisance in the lease
  • Changes to the flat (alterations and additions)
  • I don't know whether the lease allows me to alter or improve anything in the flat - you should know whether it applies to all alterations or just structural alteration, and whether consent is required
  • The landlord’s rights to access the flat you be made aware that your landlord has rights of access and I know how much notice s/he must provide. For a comprehensive list of information to be contained in your report on your leasehold property in Birkenhead please ask your lawyer in advance of your conveyancing in Birkenhead

  • I've found a house that appears to be perfect, at a reasonable figure which is making it all the more appealing. I have since discovered that the title is leasehold as opposed to freehold. I am assuming that there are issues buying a leasehold house in Birkenhead. Conveyancing solicitors have are soon to be instructed. Will they explain the issues?

    The majority of houses in Birkenhead are freehold rather than leasehold. In this scenario it’s worth having a local solicitor who is familiar with the area can assist with the conveyancing process. It is clear that you are buying in Birkenhead so you should seriously consider looking for a Birkenhead conveyancing solicitor and be sure that they are used to advising on leasehold houses. First you will need to check the unexpired lease term. Being a leaseholder you will not be entirely free to do whatever you want with the house. The lease comes with conditions for example obtaining the freeholder’sconsent to carry out changes to the property. It may be necessary to pay a service charge towards the upkeep of the communal areas where the house is located on an estate. Your solicitor should report to you on the legal implications.

    I am tempted by the attractive purchase price for a two maisonettes in Birkenhead both have in the region of fifty years left on the lease term. Should I regard a short lease as a deal breaker?

    A lease is a legal document that entitles you to use the premises for a prescribed time frame. As a lease gets shorter the marketability of the lease decreases and results in it becoming more expensive to extend the lease. This is why it is advisable to extend the lease term. Sometimes it is difficult to sell a property with a short lease as mortgage companies less inclined to grant a loan on such properties. Lease extension can be a protracted process. We advise that you seek professional assistance from a conveyancer and surveyor with experience in this arena

    Do you have any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in Birkenhead with the intention of speeding up the sale process?

    • Much of the frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Birkenhead can be avoided if you appoint lawyers as soon as your agents start marketing the property and ask them to collate the leasehold documentation which will be required by the buyers solicitors.
    • The majority landlords or Management Companies in Birkenhead levy fees for supplying management packs for a leasehold homes. You or your lawyers should enquire as to the actual amount of the charges. The management pack can be applied for as soon as you have a buyer, thus accelerating the process. The typical amount of time it takes to receive management information is three weeks. It is the most usual reason for delay in leasehold conveyancing in Birkenhead.
  • Some Birkenhead leases require Licence to Assign from the landlord. If this applies to your lease, it would be prudent to notify your estate agents to make sure that the purchasers obtain bank and professional references. The bank reference should make it clear that the buyer is able to meet 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 purchasers or their lawyers.
  • If you hold a share in a the freehold, you should ensure that you have the original share document. Organising a re-issued share certificate is often a time consuming process and slows down many a Birkenhead home move. If a duplicate share certificate is necessary, you should approach the company officers or managing agents (if relevant) for this as soon as possible.
  • You may think that you are aware of the number of years remaining on your lease but it would be wise to verify this via your solicitors. A purchaser's lawyer will not be happy to advise their client to to exchange contracts if the remaining number of years is below 80 years. It is therefore essential at an early stage that you consider whether the lease for your property needs extending. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your premises on the market for sale.

  • Completion in due on our sale of a £175000 garden flat in Birkenhead in just under a week. The landlords agents has quoted £420 for Landlord’s certificate, building insurance schedule and 3 years service charge statements. Is the landlord entitled to charge such fees for a flat conveyance in Birkenhead?

    Birkenhead conveyancing on leasehold maisonettes often requires the buyer’s lawyer submitting questions for the landlord to address. Although the landlord is not legally bound to address these enquiries most will be content to do so. They are at liberty charge a reasonable administration fee for answering enquiries or supplying documentation. There is no upper cap for such fees. The average fee for the paperwork that you are referring to is £350, in some situations it exceeds £800. The management information fee levied by the landlord must be accompanied by a synopsis of entitlements and obligations in relation to administration charges, otherwise the charge is not strictly payable. Reality however dictates that you have little option but to pay whatever is requested of you should you wish to exchange contracts with the buyer.

    I own a basement flat in Birkenhead, conveyancing was carried out in 2001. Can you please calculate a probable premium for a statutory lease extension? Comparable properties in Birkenhead with over 90 years remaining are worth £212,000. The ground rent is £55 invoiced annually. The lease ends on 21st October 2073

    You have 53 years unexpired we estimate the price of your lease extension to span between £31,400 and £36,200 as well as professional fees.

    The figure 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 tribunal or court proceedings. There are no doubt additional issues that need to be considered and clearly you 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.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Birkenhead