Top Five Questions relating to Charmouth leasehold conveyancing
I am hoping to put an offer on a small detached house that seems to be perfect, at a great price which is making it more attractive. I have since discovered that the title is leasehold as opposed to freehold. I would have thought that there are particular concerns buying a leasehold house in Charmouth. Conveyancing advisers have are about to be appointed. Will they explain the issues?
Most houses in Charmouth are freehold rather than leasehold. This is one of the situations where having a local conveyancer used to dealing with such properties who can assist with the conveyancing process. It is clear that you are buying in Charmouth in which case you should be looking for a Charmouth conveyancing practitioner and check that they are used to transacting on leasehold houses. First you will need to check the unexpired lease term. Being a lessee you will not be at liberty to do whatever you want with the house. The lease will likely included provisions such as obtaining the freeholder’sconsent to carry out changes to the property. It may be necessary to pay a contribution towards the upkeep of the estate where the property is located on an estate. Your lawyer will report to you on the legal implications.
My wife and I purchased a leasehold flat in Charmouth. Conveyancing and Accord Mortgages Ltd mortgage went though with no issue. A letter has just been received from someone saying they have taken over the freehold. Attached was a demand for arrears of ground rent dating back to 1993. The conveyancing practitioner in Charmouth who previously acted has now retired.Any advice?
The first thing you should do is contact the Land Registry to be sure that this person is indeed the registered owner of the freehold reversion. There is no need to incur the fees of a Charmouth conveyancing lawyer to do this as it can be done on-line for £3. Rest assured that in any event, even if this is the rightful freeholder, under the Limitation Act 1980 no more than 6 years of rent can be collected.
Last month I purchased a leasehold house in Charmouth. Am I liable to pay service charges for periods before my ownership?
Where the service charge has already been demanded from the previous owner and they have not paid you would not usually be personally liable for the arrears. However, 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).
I am a negotiator for a long established estate agent office in Charmouth where we have experienced a number of leasehold sales put at risk as a result of leases having less than 80 years remaining. I have been given conflicting advice from local Charmouth conveyancing solicitors. Please can you confirm whether the seller of a flat can initiate the lease extension formalities for the purchaser on completion of the sale?
As long as the seller has been the owner 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 buyer can avoid having to wait 2 years to extend their lease. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment needs to be completed before, or at the same time as completion of the sale.
Alternatively, it may be possible 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 buyer.
When it comes to leasehold conveyancing in Charmouth what are the most common lease problems?
There is nothing unique about leasehold conveyancing in Charmouth. All leases are individual and legal mistakes in the legal wording can result in certain provisions are missing. The following missing provisions could result in a defective lease:
- Repairing obligations to or maintain parts of the premises
- 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
You could encounter a problem when selling your property if you have a defective lease as they can affect a potential buyer’s ability to obtain a mortgage. Nationwide Building Society, Leeds Building Society, and Aldermore 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, forcing the purchaser to pull out.
Charmouth Conveyancing for Leasehold Flats - Examples of Questions you should ask Prior to buying
What restrictions are contained in the Charmouth Lease?
How much is the yearly service fee and ground rent?
The answer will be important as a) areas can result in problems for the block as the communal areas may start to deteriorate where maintenance remain unpaid b) if the leasehold owners have a dispute with the managing agents you will wish to know about it