Questions and Answers: Brighouse leasehold conveyancing
Having checked my lease I have discovered that there are only Seventy years left on my lease in Brighouse. I need to get lease extension but my landlord is missing. What options are available to me?
If you meet the appropriate requirements, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can apply to the County Court for for permission to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will enable the lease to be extended by the Court. You will be obliged to demonstrate that you or your lawyers have used your best endeavours to track down the lessor. On the whole a specialist should be useful to conduct investigations and to produce a report which can be used as proof that the landlord can not be located. It is advisable to get professional help from a property lawyer in relation to proving the landlord’s disappearance and the application to the County Court covering Brighouse.
I've found a house that appears to meet my requirements, at a great price which is making it more attractive. I have subsequently discovered that the title is leasehold as opposed to freehold. I would have thought that there are issues buying a leasehold house in Brighouse. Conveyancing advisers have are soon to be appointed. Will they explain the issues?
The majority of houses in Brighouse are freehold and not leasehold. This is one of the situations where having a local solicitor who is familiar with the area can assist with the conveyancing process. it is apparent that you are buying in Brighouse in which case you should be shopping around for a Brighouse conveyancing practitioner and be sure that they are used to dealing with leasehold houses. As a matter of priority you will need to check the number of years remaining. Being a tenant you will not be at liberty to do whatever you want to the property. The lease will likely included provisions such as obtaining the landlord’sconsent to carry out changes to the property. You may also be required to pay a maintenance charge towards the upkeep of the communal areas where the property is located on an estate. Your conveyancer will report to you on the legal implications.
Last month I purchased a leasehold property in Brighouse. Am I liable to pay service charges for periods before completion of my purchase?
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. A critical element 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).
I am employed by a reputable estate agency in Brighouse where we have witnessed a few flat sales put at risk as a result of short leases. I have been given contradictory information from local Brighouse conveyancing solicitors. Can you shed some light as to whether the owner of a flat can instigate the lease extension process for the buyer?
As long as 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 sit tight for 2 years for a lease extension. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment has to be done before, or simultaneously with completion of the disposal of the property.
Alternatively, it may be possible 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 are your top tips when it comes to appointing a Brighouse conveyancing firm to carry out our lease extension conveyancing?
When appointing a solicitor for lease extension works (regardless if they are a Brighouse conveyancing practice) it is imperative that they be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of conveyancing. We advise that you make enquires with several firms including non Brighouse conveyancing practices prior to 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 what is the reason?
Brighouse Conveyancing for Leasehold Flats - Sample of Queries before buying
In the main the outlay for major works tend not to be built into the service charges, albeit that a few managing agents in Brighouse obliged leasehold owners to pay into a sinking fund created for the specific purpose of building a fund for larger works.
Can you tell me if there are any major works on the horizon that will add a premium to the service costs?
The answer will be important as a) areas may cause problems for the building as the common areas may begin to deteriorate if maintenance are not paid for b) if the tenants have a dispute with the managing agents you will wish to know about it