Top Five Questions relating to Cotham leasehold conveyancing
Having had my offer accepted I require leasehold conveyancing in Cotham. Before I get started I would like to find out the number of years remaining on the lease.
Assuming the lease is registered - and most are in Cotham - then the leasehold title will always include the short particulars 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 Sixty One years remaining on my lease in Cotham. I now want to get lease extension but my freeholder is can not be found. What are my options?
If you meet the appropriate requirements, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can submit an application to the County Court for for permission to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will enable the lease to be granted an extra 90 years by the Court. You will be obliged to demonstrate that you have made all reasonable attempts to track down the landlord. For most situations an enquiry agent should be useful to try and locate and prepare an expert document to be accepted by the court as proof that the freeholder can not be located. It is wise to seek advice from a property lawyer both on devolving into the landlord’s absence and the vesting order request to the County Court covering Cotham.
I am tempted by the attractive purchase price for a couple of maisonettes in Cotham which have about fifty years left on the leases. should I be concerned?
There is no doubt about it. A leasehold apartment in Cotham is a deteriorating 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 banks, leases with under eighty years become less and less marketable. 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 Cotham 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 They may agree to a smaller lump sum and an increase in the ground rent, but to shorter extension terms in return. You need to ensure that any new 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.
I am a negotiator for a busy estate agency in Cotham where we see a few flat sales derailed due to short leases. I have been given contradictory information from local Cotham conveyancing firms. Can you clarify whether the vendor of a flat can commence the lease extension formalities for the buyer?
As long as the seller has owned the lease 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 sit tight for 2 years to extend their lease. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment has to be done before, or simultaneously with completion of the disposal of the property.
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.
In relation to leasehold conveyancing in Cotham what are the most frequent lease defects?
Leasehold conveyancing in Cotham is not unique. All leases are individual and drafting errors can sometimes mean that certain sections are wrong. For example, if your lease is missing any of the following, it could be defective:
- A provision to repair to or maintain parts of the premises
- Insurance obligations
- 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
You could encounter difficulties when selling your property if you have a defective lease as they can affect a potential buyer’s ability to obtain a mortgage. Lloyds TSB Bank, Skipton Building Society, and Aldermore all have express requirements when it comes to what is expected in a lease. If a mortgage lender believes that the lease is problematic they may refuse to grant the mortgage, forcing the purchaser to withdraw.
Leasehold Conveyancing in Cotham - Examples of Queries Prior to Purchasing
Does the lease have more than 85 years left?
Does the lease contain onerous restrictions?
Its a good idea to find out as much as you can about the company managing the block as they will impact your use and enjoyment of the property. As the proprietor of a leasehold property you are frequently at the mercy of the managing agents both financially and when it comes to daily matters such as the tidiness of the communal areas. Enquire of other tenants what they think of them. On a final note, be sure you know the dates that the maintenance fees are due to the managing agents and precisely what it includes.