Experts for Leasehold Conveyancing in Coleford

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Frequently asked questions relating to Coleford leasehold conveyancing

I am in need of some leasehold conveyancing in Coleford. Before I set the wheels in motion I would like to find out the unexpired term of the lease.

If the lease is registered - and most are in Coleford - 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 wish to rent out my leasehold apartment in Coleford. Conveyancing solicitor who did the purchase is retired - so can't ask her. Is permission from the freeholder required?

A 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 rule is that if the lease contains no specific ban or restriction, subletting is allowed. Most leases in Coleford do not contain strict prohibition on subletting – such a provision would adversely affect the market value the flat. Instead, there is usually a basic requirement that the owner notifies the freeholder, possibly supplying a copy of the tenancy agreement.

There are only 72 years unexpired on my flat in Coleford. I need to get lease extension but my landlord is absent. What are my options?

If 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 magistrate. You will be obliged to prove that you or your lawyers have made all reasonable attempts to find the lessor. In some cases a specialist should be helpful to carry out a search and prepare a report which can be accepted by the court as proof that the landlord can not be located. It is advisable to get professional help from a conveyancer both on investigating the landlord’s absence and the application to the County Court overseeing Coleford.

I work for a long established estate agent office in Coleford where we have witnessed a few leasehold sales put at risk as a result of short leases. I have been given inconsistent advice from local Coleford conveyancing solicitors. Could you shed some light as to whether the vendor of a flat can initiate the lease extension process for the purchaser on completion of the sale?

Provided that the seller has been the owner for at least 2 years it is possible, to serve a Section 42 notice to start the lease extension process and assign the benefit of the notice to the purchaser. The benefit of this is that the buyer need not have to wait 2 years to extend their lease. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment has to be done before, or at the same time as completion of the sale.

Alternatively, it may be possible 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.

Can you provide any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in Coleford from the perspective of speeding up the sale process?

  • A significant proportion of the frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Coleford can be reduced where you appoint lawyers the minute your agents start advertising the property and ask them to put together the leasehold information which will be required by the purchasers’ representatives.
  • The majority freeholders or Management Companies in Coleford charge for supplying management packs for a leasehold premises. You or your lawyers should find out the actual amount of the charges. The management information sought on or before finding a buyer, thus accelerating the process. The average time it takes to obtain the necessary information is three weeks. It is the most usual cause of delay in leasehold conveyancing in Coleford.
  • Some Coleford leases require Licence to Assign from the landlord. If this is the case, you should notify your estate agents to make sure that the purchasers put in hand bank and professional references. The bank reference will need to confirm that the buyers are able to meet the yearly service charge and the actual amount of the service charge should be quoted in the bank’s letter. You will therefore need to provide your estate agents with the service charge figures so that they can pass this information on to the purchasers or their lawyers.
  • If there is a history of 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 buyers and their solicitors will be reluctant to purchase a property where there is a current dispute. You will have to accept that you will have to 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 ahead of the contract papers being issued to the buyers’ solicitors. You will still have to reveal details of the dispute to the purchasers, but it is clearly preferable to present the dispute as historic rather than unsettled.
  • You may think that you are aware of the number of years left on your lease but you should verify this by asking your lawyers. A buyer’s conveyancer will be unlikely to recommend their client to where the lease term is under 75 years. It is therefore essential at an as soon as possible that you consider whether the lease term for your property needs extending. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your property on the market for sale.

  • I bought a studio flat in Coleford, conveyancing having been completed 1998. Can you give me give me an indication of the likely cost of a lease extension? Similar flats in Coleford with over 90 years remaining are worth £192,000. The ground rent is £45 yearly. The lease finishes on 21st October 2100

    You have 77 years unexpired we estimate the premium for your lease extension to range between £9,500 and £11,000 as well as professional fees.

    The figure that we have given is a general guide to costs for renewing a lease, but we are not able to supply the actual costs without more detailed due diligence. You should not use the figures in a Notice of Claim or as an informal offer. There are no doubt additional concerns that need to be considered and you obviously should be as accurate as possible in your negotiations. Please do not move forward placing reliance on this information without first getting professional advice.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Coleford