Top Five Questions relating to Burnham On Crouch leasehold conveyancing
I have just started marketing my basement flat in Burnham On Crouch.Conveyancing has not commenced but I have just received a quarterly maintenance charge invoice – Do I pay up?
The sensible thing to do is discharge the service charge 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.
My wife and I purchased a leasehold house in Burnham On Crouch. Conveyancing and Britannia mortgage organised. A letter has just been received from someone claiming to own the reversionary interest in the property. It included a demand for arrears of ground rent dating back to 1996. The conveyancing practitioner in Burnham On Crouch who acted for me is not around.Any advice?
First make enquiries of the Land Registry to make sure that the individual purporting to own the freehold is indeed the new freeholder. You do not need to incur the fees of a Burnham On Crouch conveyancing lawyer to do this as you can do this on the Land Registry website for less than a fiver. Rest assured that in any event, even if this is the legitimate landlord, under the Limitation Act 1980 no more than 6 years of rent can be collected.
I am looking at a two apartments in Burnham On Crouch which have about 50 years remaining on the leases. Should I regard a short lease as a deal breaker?
There are plenty of short leases in Burnham On Crouch. The lease is a legal document that entitles you to use the premises for a prescribed time frame. As a lease shortens the marketability of the lease decreases and results in it becoming more expensive to acquire a lease extension. For this reason it is often a good idea to extend the lease term. It is often difficulties arise selling premises with a short lease because mortgage companies less inclined to grant a loan on properties of this type. Lease extension can be a protracted process. We recommend you seek professional assistance from a solicitor and surveyor with experience in this area
I work for a reputable estate agency in Burnham On Crouch where we have witnessed a number of flat sales jeopardised due to short leases. I have received inconsistent advice from local Burnham On Crouch conveyancing solicitors. Please can you clarify whether the vendor of a flat can start the lease extension formalities for the purchaser on completion of the sale?
As long as the seller has owned the lease 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 wait 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 simultaneously with completion of the disposal of the property.
An alternative approach is to extend the lease informally by agreement with the landlord 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 purchaser.
What are your top tips when it comes to appointing a Burnham On Crouch conveyancing firm to carry out our lease extension conveyancing?
When appointing a property lawyer for lease extension works (regardless if they are a Burnham On Crouch conveyancing firm) it is essential that he or she should be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of work. We advise that you talk with two or three firms including non Burnham On Crouch conveyancing practices before you instructing a firm. Where the conveyancing practice is ALEP accredited then so much the better. Some following of questions could be of use:
- How familiar is the firm with lease extension legislation?
Burnham On Crouch Conveyancing for Leasehold Flats - Examples of Queries Prior to Purchasing
Many Burnham On Crouch leasehold flats will have a service bill for the upkeep of the block levied by the landlord. Where you buy the apartment you will have to meet this charge, usually in instalments accross the year. This may differ from a few hundred pounds to thousands of pounds for blocks with lifts and large communal areas. In all likelihood there will be a rentcharge to be met annual, this is usually not a significant figure, say about £50-£100 but you should to enquire as sometimes it could be many hundreds of pounds.
What is the length of the lease?
Please note if it is fewer than 80 years it will have adverse implications on the salability of the apartment. It is worth checking with your bank that they are willing to go ahead with the loan given the lease term. Leases with less than 80 years remaining means that you will probably have to extend the lease sooner rather than later and it is worth finding out what this would cost. Remember, in most cases you would be required to have owned the residence for 24 months before you are eligible to carry out a lease extension.