Fixed-fee leasehold conveyancing in Christchurch:

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Recently asked questions relating to Christchurch leasehold conveyancing

Having had my offer accepted I require leasehold conveyancing in Christchurch. Before I get started I require certainty as to the number of years remaining on the lease.

Assuming the lease is recorded at the land registry - and 99.9% are in Christchurch - then the leasehold title will always include the basic details of the lease, namely the date; the term; and the original parties. From a conveyancing perspective such details then enable any prospective buyer and lender to confirm that any lease they are looking at is the one relevant to that title.For any other purpose, such as confirming how long the term was granted for and calculating what is left, then the register should be sufficient on it's own.

I only have 72 years remaining on my flat in Christchurch. I now want to extend my lease but my landlord is missing. What options are available to me?

On the basis that you qualify, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can submit an application to the County Court for an order to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will mean that your lease can be granted an extra 90 years by the Court. However, you will be required to prove that you have used your best endeavours to find the landlord. For most situations an enquiry agent should be useful to conduct investigations and prepare an expert document which can be used as evidence that the freeholder is indeed missing. It is wise to seek advice from a conveyancer both on investigating the landlord’s disappearance and the application to the County Court covering Christchurch.

I’m about to sell my 2 bed apartment in Christchurch.Conveyancing is yet to be initiated but I have just received a half-yearly maintenance charge invoice – should I leave it to the buyer to sort out?

It best that you 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 managing agents will not acknowledge the buyer until 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 own a leasehold house in Christchurch. Conveyancing and Chelsea Building Society mortgage are in place. I have received a letter from someone saying they have taken over the freehold. It included a demand for arrears of ground rent dating back to 1996. The conveyancing solicitor in Christchurch who previously acted has long since retired.Any advice?

The first thing you should do is make enquiries of the Land Registry to be sure that the individual claiming to own the freehold is in fact the new freeholder. It is not necessary to instruct a Christchurch conveyancing lawyer to do this as you can do this on the Land Registry website for £3. You should note 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.

What advice can you give us when it comes to appointing a Christchurch conveyancing firm to carry out our lease extension conveyancing?

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

  • How experienced is the firm with lease extension legislation?
  • If the firm is not ALEP accredited then what is the reason?

  • I bought a split level flat in Christchurch, conveyancing having been completed 4 years ago. Can you give me give me an indication of the likely cost of a lease extension? Corresponding flats in Christchurch with a long lease are worth £202,000. The average or mid-range amount of ground rent is £60 invoiced annually. The lease ends on 21st October 2091

    You have 70 years remaining on your lease we estimate the premium for your lease extension to span between £9,500 and £11,000 plus professional fees.

    The suggested premium range that we have given is a general guide to costs for renewing a lease, but we cannot give you a more accurate figure in the absence of detailed investigations. You should not use this information in a Notice of Claim or as an informal offer. There may be other concerns that need to be considered and clearly you should be as accurate as possible in your negotiations. Neither should you take any other action based on this information without first seeking the advice of a professional.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Christchurch