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Recently asked questions relating to Carlisle leasehold conveyancing

I own a leasehold flat in Carlisle. Conveyancing and Chelsea Building Society mortgage are in place. A letter has just been received from someone saying they have taken over the freehold. Attached was a ground rent demand for rent dating back to 1995. The conveyancing solicitor in Carlisle who acted for me is not around.Any advice?

First make enquiries of the Land Registry to be sure that the individual purporting to own the freehold is in fact the registered owner of the freehold reversion. You do not need to instruct a Carlisle conveyancing practitioner to do this as you can do this on the Land Registry website for £3. You should note that regardless, even if this is the rightful landlord, under the Limitation Act 1980 no more than 6 years of rent can be collected.

What are your top tips when it comes to appointing a Carlisle conveyancing practice to carry out our lease extension conveyancing?

When appointing a solicitor for lease extension works (regardless if they are a Carlisle conveyancing practice) it is essential that he or she should be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of work. We recommend that you speak with two or three firms including non Carlisle conveyancing practices before you instructing a firm. Where the conveyancing practice is ALEP accredited then that’s a bonus. Some following of questions might be useful:

  • How familiar is the firm with lease extension legislation?
  • How many lease extensions have they carried out in Carlisle in the last 12 months?

  • Do you have any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in Carlisle from the perspective of expediting the sale process?

    • A significant proportion of the delay in leasehold conveyancing in Carlisle can be avoided if you appoint lawyers as soon as your agents start marketing the property and request that they start to put together the leasehold documentation which will be required by the buyers lawyers.
    • Many freeholders or managing agents in Carlisle levy fees for supplying management packs for a leasehold property. You or your lawyers should enquire as to the fee that they propose to charge. The management information can be applied for on or before finding a buyer, thus accelerating the process. The typical amount of time it takes to obtain the necessary information is three weeks. It is the most frequent cause of frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Carlisle.
  • If there is a history of conflict with your landlord or managing agents it is very important that these are settled prior to the flat being marketed. The purchasers and their solicitors will be reluctant to purchase a flat where a dispute is unresolved. You may have to bite the bullet and discharge any arrears of service charge or resolve 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 particulars of the dispute to the purchasers, but it is clearly preferable to reveal the dispute as historic as opposed to unsettled.
  • If you are supposed to have a share in the Management Company, you should ensure that you have the original share certificate. Obtaining a duplicate share certificate is often a lengthy process and frustrates many a Carlisle conveyancing deal. If a new share is needed, you should approach the company officers or managing agents (where applicable) for this at the earliest opportunity.
  • You believe that you know the number of years left on your lease but it would be advisable verify this via your lawyers. A purchaser's lawyer will be unlikely to recommend their client to proceed with the purchase of a leasehold property the remaining number of years is less than 80 years. It is therefore important at an as soon as possible that you identify whether the lease requires a lease extension. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your property on the market for sale.

  • Completion in due on the sale of our £375000 apartment in Carlisle in six days. The managing agents has quoted £372 for Certificate of Compliance, building insurance schedule and previous years statements of service charge. Is the landlord entitled to charge an administration fee for a leasehold conveyance in Carlisle?

    Carlisle conveyancing on leasehold maisonettes normally involves the buyer’s conveyancer submitting questions for the landlord to address. Although the landlord is under no legal obligation to answer such questions the majority will be willing to assist. They are entitled charge a reasonable charge for answering questions or supplying documentation. There is no upper cap for such fees. The average costs for the information that you are referring to is £350, in some cases it is above £800. The management information fee required by the landlord must be sent together with a synopsis of entitlements and obligations in relation to administration charges, without which the charge is technically not due. In reality one has little option but to pay whatever is requested of you should you wish to complete the sale of your home.

    Are there frequently found defects that you witness in leases for Carlisle properties?

    Leasehold conveyancing in Carlisle is not unique. Most leases are unique and drafting errors can result in certain provisions are not included. For example, if your lease is missing any of the following, it could be defective:

    • Repairing obligations to or maintain parts of the building
    • A duty to insure the building
    • Clauses dealing with recovering service charges for expenditure on the building or common parts.
    • 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. Barclays , Coventry Building Society, and Bank of Ireland all have very detailed requirements when it comes to what is expected in a lease. Where a lender has been advised by their lawyers that the lease is problematic they may refuse to provide security, forcing the purchaser to withdraw.

    I acquired a split level flat in Carlisle, conveyancing formalities finalised 7 years ago. 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? Comparable properties in Carlisle with a long lease are worth £189,000. The average or mid-range amount of ground rent is £45 yearly. The lease ends on 21st October 2084

    With 62 years remaining on your lease we estimate the price of your lease extension to range between £20,000 and £23,000 plus plus your own and the landlord's "reasonable" professional fees.

    The figure that we have given is a general guide to costs for renewing a lease, but we are not able to advice on a more accurate figure in the absence of comprehensive due diligence. You should not use this information in a Notice of Claim or as an informal offer. There may be additional concerns that need to be taken into account and clearly you want to be as accurate as possible in your negotiations. Neither should you take any other action based on this information before seeking the advice of a professional.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Carlisle