Guaranteed fixed fees for Leasehold Conveyancing in Brighton

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Top Five Questions relating to Brighton leasehold conveyancing

I only have 62 years remaining on my lease in Brighton. I am keen to get lease extension but my freeholder is absent. What should I do?

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 granted an extra 90 years by the magistrate. You will be obliged to demonstrate that you or your lawyers have made all reasonable attempts to find the landlord. In some cases a specialist would be useful to try and locate and to produce a report to be accepted by the court as proof that the freeholder is indeed missing. It is wise to seek advice from a property lawyer both on investigating the landlord’s disappearance and the vesting order request to the County Court overseeing Brighton.

Looking forward to complete next month on a garden flat in Brighton. Conveyancing solicitors assured me that they are sending me a report within the next couple of days. What should I be looking out for?

Your report on title for your leasehold conveyancing in Brighton should include some of the following:

  • The unexpired lease term You should be advised as what happens when the lease ends, and informed of the importance of not letting the lease term falling below eighty years
  • Does the lease prevent you from subletting the property, or having a home office for business
  • You need to be told what counts as a Nuisance in the lease
  • An explanation as to the provision in the lease to pay service charges - with regard to both the building, and the more general rights a leaseholder has
  • You should have a good understanding of the insurance provisions
  • 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
  • What you can do if a neighbour is in violation of a provision in their lease? For a comprehensive list of information to be contained in your report on your leasehold property in Brighton please enquire of your lawyer in advance of your conveyancing in Brighton

  • Can you offer any advice when it comes to choosing a Brighton conveyancing practice to carry out our lease extension conveyancing?

    If you are instructing a property lawyer for lease extension works (regardless if they are a Brighton conveyancing practice) it is essential that he or she should be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of conveyancing. We suggested that you make enquires with two or three firms including non Brighton conveyancing practices prior to instructing a firm. Where the conveyancing practice is ALEP accredited then so much the better. Some following of questions might be of use:

    • How experienced is the firm with lease extension legislation?
  • How many lease extensions have they conducted in Brighton in the last 12 months?

  • Do you have any advice for leasehold conveyancing in Brighton with the intention of speeding up the sale process?

    • Much of the delay in leasehold conveyancing in Brighton can be reduced where you appoint lawyers as soon as your agents start marketing the property and ask them to put together the leasehold documentation which will be required by the buyers lawyers.
    • Many landlords or managing agents in Brighton 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 sought on or before finding a buyer, thus accelerating the process. The average time it takes to receive management information is three weeks. It is the most common reason for frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Brighton.
  • Some Brighton leases require Licence to Assign from the landlord. If this applies to your lease, you should place the estate agents on notice to make sure that the purchasers obtain financial (bank) and professional references. Any 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 have had 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 property where a dispute is unsettled. You may need to swallow your pride and pay any arrears of service charge or settle the dispute prior to completion of the sale. 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 details of the dispute to the purchasers, but it is clearly preferable to reveal the dispute as historic as opposed to unresolved.
  • You believe that you know the number of years remaining on your lease but it would be advisable double-check via your conveyancers. A purchaser's conveyancer will be unlikely to recommend their client to proceed with the purchase of a leasehold property the remaining number of years is under 75 years. In the circumstances it is essential at an as soon as possible that you identify whether the lease term requires a lease extension. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your premises on the market for sale.

  • Are there frequently found problems that you encounter in leases for Brighton properties?

    There is nothing unique about leasehold conveyancing in Brighton. All leases are individual and legal mistakes in the legal wording can sometimes mean that certain clauses are missing. The following missing provisions could result in a defective lease:

    • A provision to repair to or maintain parts of the property
    • A duty to insure the building
    • A provision for the recovery of money spent for the benefit of another party.
    • Maintenance charge proportions which don’t add up to the correct percentage

    A defective lease can cause issues when trying to sell a property primarily because it impacts on the ability to obtain a mortgage on the property. HSBC Bank, The Mortgage Works, and Nottingham Building Society all have express requirements when it comes to what is expected in a lease. Where a lender has been advised by their lawyers that the lease is defective they may refuse to grant the mortgage, obliging the buyer to pull out.

    I purchased a basement flat in Brighton, conveyancing formalities finalised 2003. Can you let me have an estimate of the premium that my landlord can legally expect in return for granting a renewal of my lease? Corresponding properties in Brighton with a long lease are worth £182,000. The ground rent is £60 yearly. The lease ceases on 21st October 2070

    With only 50 years remaining on your lease the likely cost is going to be between £36,100 and £41,800 plus 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 comprehensive investigations. Do not use this information in tribunal or court proceedings. There may be other issues that need to be considered and you obviously should be as accurate as possible in your negotiations. Please do not take any other action based on this information before seeking the advice of a professional.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Brighton