Top Five Questions relating to Chatteris leasehold conveyancing
I wish to let out my leasehold flat in Chatteris. Conveyancing solicitor who did the purchase is retired - so can't ask him. Is permission from the freeholder required?
Your lease dictates relations between the landlord and you the leaseholder; in particular, it will set out if subletting is prohibited, 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. Most leases in Chatteris do not contain subletting altogether – such a clause would adversely affect the market value the property. Instead, there is usually a basic requirement that the owner notifies the freeholder, possibly sending a copy of the sublease.
I am hoping to put an offer on a small detached house that appears to meet my requirements, at a great figure which is making it all the more appealing. I have since found out that the title is leasehold as opposed to freehold. I am assuming that there are particular concerns purchasing a house with a leasehold title in Chatteris. Conveyancing solicitors have are soon to be instructed. Will they explain the issues?
Most houses in Chatteris are freehold rather than leasehold. In this scenario it’s worth having a local conveyancer used to dealing with such properties who can help the conveyancing process. it is apparent that you are purchasing in Chatteris so you should seriously consider looking for a Chatteris conveyancing solicitor and be sure that they have experience in advising on leasehold houses. First you will need to check the number of years remaining. Being a leaseholder you will not be at liberty to do whatever you want to the property. The lease comes with conditions for example requiring the landlord’sconsent to carry out alterations. It may be necessary to pay a maintenance charge towards the maintenance of the communal areas where the property is located on an estate. Your conveyancer will appraise you on the various issues.
I am tempted by the attractive purchase price for a couple of maisonettes in Chatteris which have in the region of forty five years remaining on the leases. Do I need to be concerned?
There are no two ways about it. A leasehold apartment in Chatteris is a wasting asset as a result of the shortening lease. The closer the lease gets to its expiry date, the more it reduces the value of the premises. For most buyers and mortgage companies, leases with less than 75 years become less and less attractive. 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 property 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 Chatteris conveyancing experts who will explain the options available to you during an initial telephone conversation free of charge. More often than not it is possible to negotiate informally with the freeholder to extend 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 Chatteris. 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 owner 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).
I am a negotiator for a long established estate agent office in Chatteris where we have experienced a number of leasehold sales derailed as a result of short leases. I have received inconsistent advice from local Chatteris conveyancing solicitors. Please can you shed some light as to whether the seller of a flat can commence the lease extension process for the buyer?
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 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 prior to, or at the same time as completion of the sale.
An alternative approach is to agree the lease extension with the freeholder 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.
I am the registered owner of a 1 bedroom flat in Chatteris, conveyancing formalities finalised in 2004. Can you please calculate a probable premium for a statutory lease extension? Corresponding properties in Chatteris with a long lease are worth £224,000. The average or mid-range amount of ground rent is £45 levied per year. The lease comes to an end on 21st October 2078
With only 58 years left to run the likely cost is going to be between £22,800 and £26,400 plus professional fees.
The suggested premium range that we have given is a general guide to costs for extending a lease, but we are not able to provide 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 are no doubt additional issues that need to be taken into account and you obviously should be as accurate as possible in your negotiations. Please do not move forward based on this information without first getting professional advice.