Fixed-fee leasehold conveyancing in Cardigan:

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Examples of recent questions relating to leasehold conveyancing in Cardigan

Back In 2008, I bought a leasehold flat in Cardigan. Conveyancing and Leeds Building Society mortgage organised. A letter has just been received from someone saying they have taken over the reversionary interest in the property. Attached was a demand for arrears of ground rent dating back to 1991. The conveyancing practitioner in Cardigan who previously acted has long since retired.Any advice?

First make enquiries of HMLR to be sure that the individual claiming to own the freehold is in fact the registered owner of the freehold reversion. You do not need to incur the fees of a Cardigan 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 the limitation period for recovery of ground rent is six years.

I am tempted by the attractive purchase price for a two apartments in Cardigan both have in the region of 50 years remaining on the leases. Should I regard a short lease as a deal breaker?

There are no two ways about it. A leasehold flat in Cardigan is a wasting asset as a result of the shortening lease. The closer the lease gets to zero years unexpired, the more it adversely affects the value of the property. For most purchasers and lenders, leases with less than eighty years become less and less marketable. On a more upbeat note, leaseholders can extend their leases by serving a Section 42 Notice. One stipulation is that they must have owned the premises for two years (unlike a Section 13 notice for purchasing the freehold, when leaseholders can participate from day one of ownership). When successful, they will have the right to an extension of 90 years to the current term and ground rent is effectively reduced to zero. Before moving forward with a purchase of a residence with a short lease term remaining you should talk to a solicitor specialising in lease extensions and leasehold enfranchisement. We are are happy to put you in touch with Cardigan conveyancing experts who will explain the options available to you during an initial telephone conversation free of charge. A more straightforward and quicker method of extending would be to contact your landlord directly and sound him out on the prospect of extending the lease You may find he or she is happy to negotiate informally and willing to consider your offer straight off, without having to involve anyone else. This will save you time and money and it could help you reach a lower price on the lease. You need to ensure that the agreed terms represent good long-term value compared with the standard benefits of the Section 42 Notice and that onerous clauses are not inserted into any redrafting of the lease.

Last month I purchased a leasehold property in Cardigan. Do I have any liability for service charges relating to a period prior to completion of my purchase?

In a situation 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 ensure 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).

What are your top tips when it comes to choosing a Cardigan conveyancing firm to carry out our lease extension conveyancing?

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

  • If the firm is not ALEP accredited then what is the reason?
  • Can they put you in touch with client in Cardigan who can give a testimonial?

  • Do you have any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in Cardigan from the perspective of saving time on the sale process?

    • Much of the delay in leasehold conveyancing in Cardigan can be reduced if you instruct lawyers as soon as you market your property and ask them to collate the leasehold information needed by the purchasers’ representatives.
    • In the event that you altered the property did you need the Landlord’s approval? In particular have you installed wooden flooring? Cardigan leases often stipulate that internal structural alterations or addition of wooden flooring require a licence from the Landlord acquiescing to such alterations. If you fail to have the approvals to hand do not communicate with the landlord without contacting your conveyancer first.
  • If you have had conflict with your landlord or managing agents it is very important that these are resolved prior to the flat being put on the market. The purchasers and their solicitors will be reluctant to purchase a property where a dispute is unresolved. 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 prior to the contract papers being issued to the buyers’ solicitors. You will still have to reveal details of the dispute to the buyers, but it is better to present the dispute as historic rather than unresolved.
  • If you are supposed to have a share in the Management Company, you should ensure that you are holding the original share document. Obtaining a re-issued share certificate can be a time consuming process and slows down many a Cardigan conveyancing deal. Where a reissued share is needed, you should approach the company director and secretary or managing agents (if applicable) for this as soon as possible.
  • You believe that you know the number of years remaining on your lease but it would be advisable verify this by asking 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 under 75 years. In the circumstances it is important at an early stage that you identify whether the lease term requires a lease extension. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your property on the market for sale.

  • I acquired a basement flat in Cardigan, conveyancing formalities finalised half a dozen years ago. Can you give me give me an indication of the likely cost of a lease extension? Comparable flats in Cardigan with over 90 years remaining are worth £214,000. The average or mid-range amount of ground rent is £65 invoiced annually. The lease comes to an end on 21st October 2077

    With 55 years remaining on your lease we estimate the premium for your lease extension to be between £29,500 and £34,000 as well as legals.

    The suggested premium range above a general guide to costs for renewing a lease, but we cannot give you a more accurate figure in the absence of comprehensive due diligence. You should not use this information in tribunal or court proceedings. There are no doubt additional issues that need to be taken into account and clearly you should be as accurate as possible in your negotiations. Please do not take any other action placing reliance on this information without first getting professional advice.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Cardigan