Top Five Questions relating to Cambourne leasehold conveyancing
My partner and I may need to sub-let our Cambourne ground floor flat temporarily due to taking a sabbatical. We used a Cambourne conveyancing practice in 2004 but they have since shut and we did not have the foresight to seek any advice as to whether the lease allows us to sublet. How do we find out?
Your lease governs relations between the landlord and you the flat owner; specifically, it will indicate if subletting is not allowed, or permitted but only subject to certain conditions. The accepted inference is that if the lease contains no expres ban or restriction, subletting is allowed. The majority of leases in Cambourne do not contain strict prohibition on subletting – such a clause would undoubtedly devalue the flat. In most cases there is simply a requirement that the owner notifies the freeholder, possibly supplying a duplicate of the sublease.
I have just appointed agents to market my 2 bed apartment in Cambourne.Conveyancing has not commenced but I have just received a quarterly maintenance charge demand – what should I do?
The sensible thing to do is pay the invoice 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 management companies 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. This will smooth the conveyancing process.
I am a negotiator for a reputable estate agent office in Cambourne where we see a number of flat sales jeopardised due to short leases. I have received conflicting advice from local Cambourne conveyancing solicitors. Could you clarify whether the owner of a flat can start the lease extension process for the purchaser on completion of the sale?
Provided that the seller has owned the lease 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. The benefit of this is that the proposed purchaser can avoid having to wait 2 years to extend their lease. 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.
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 advice can you give us when it comes to appointing a Cambourne conveyancing practice to deal with our lease extension?
If you are instructing a property lawyer for your lease extension (regardless if they are a Cambourne conveyancing practice) it is most important that he or she should be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of conveyancing. We advise that you speak with several firms including non Cambourne conveyancing practices before you instructing a firm. If the firm is ALEP accredited then that’s a bonus. Some following of questions might be of use:
- How familiar is the firm with lease extension legislation?
In relation to leasehold conveyancing in Cambourne what are the most common lease problems?
There is nothing unique about leasehold conveyancing in Cambourne. Most leases are individual and legal mistakes in the legal wording can result in certain clauses are erroneous. The following missing provisions could result in a defective lease:
- Repairing obligations to or maintain parts of the property
- A duty to insure the building
- Clauses dealing with recovering service charges for expenditure on the building or common parts.
- Service charge per centages that don't add up correctly leaving a shortfall
A defective lease can cause problems when trying to sell a property primarily because it impacts on the ability to obtain a mortgage on the property. National Westminster Bank, The Mortgage Works, and Clydesdale all have express conveyancing instructions when it comes to what is expected in a lease. Where a lender has been advised by their lawyers that the lease does not cover certain provisions they may refuse to provide security, obliging the buyer to withdraw.
Leasehold Conveyancing in Cambourne - Sample of Questions you should consider before buying
Are any of leasehold owners in arrears of their service charge liability?
If a Cambourne lease has no more than eighty years it will affect the salability of the apartment. Check with your bank that they are willing to to proceed given the lease term. Leases with fewer than 80 years remaining means that you will probably need a lease extension at some point and you need to have some idea of what this will be. Remember, in most cases you would need to own the premises for two years in order to be eligible to exercise a lease extension.
How long is the Lease?