Fixed-fee leasehold conveyancing in Crewe:

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Top Five Questions relating to Crewe leasehold conveyancing

Harry (my fiance) and I may need to rent out our Crewe 1st floor flat for a while due to taking a sabbatical. We instructed a Crewe conveyancing practice in 2001 but they have since shut and we did not have the foresight to get any advice as to whether the lease permits subletting. How do we find out?

The lease governs the relationship between the freeholder and you the flat owner; specifically, it will set out if subletting is prohibited, or permitted but only subject to certain caveats. The rule is that if the lease contains no expres ban or restriction, subletting is allowed. The majority of leases in Crewe do not contain subletting altogether – such a provision would adversely affect the market value the property. Instead, there is usually a basic requirement that the owner notifies the freeholder, possibly supplying a duplicate of the sublease.

I have just started marketing my 2 bed apartment in Crewe.Conveyancing is yet to be initiated but I have just received a yearly maintenance charge invoice – should I leave it to the buyer to sort out?

The sensible thing to do is clear 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. Having a clear account will assist your cause and will leave you no worse off financially.

My wife and I purchased a leasehold house in Crewe. Conveyancing and Leeds Building Society mortgage went though with no issue. I have received a letter from someone claiming to own the freehold. It included a demand for arrears of ground rent dating back to 1996. The conveyancing solicitor in Crewe who acted for me is not around.Any advice?

The first thing you should do is contact the Land Registry to be sure that this person is in fact the registered owner of the freehold reversion. It is not necessary to instruct a Crewe conveyancing solicitor to do this as it can be done on-line for £3. Rest assured that regardless, even if this is the legitimate landlord, under the Limitation Act 1980 no more than 6 years of rent can be collected.

I've recently bought a leasehold property in Crewe. Do I have any liability for service charges for periods before completion of my purchase?

Where the service charge has already been demanded from the previous lessee 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. It is an essential part of leasehold conveyancing for your conveyancer to be sure 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).

Do you have any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in Crewe from the point of view of saving time on the sale process?

  • A significant proportion of the delay in leasehold conveyancing in Crewe can be reduced if you get in touch lawyers the minute your agents start marketing the property and ask them to collate the leasehold documentation needed by the purchasers’ solicitors.
  • Many landlords or Management Companies in Crewe levy fees for supplying management packs for a leasehold premises. You or your lawyers should discover the fee that they propose to charge. The management pack sought as soon as you have a buyer, thus reducing delays. The average time it takes to receive management information is three weeks. It is the most common reason for delay in leasehold conveyancing in Crewe.
  • In the event that you altered the property did you need the Landlord’s permission? In particular have you installed wooden flooring? Crewe leases often stipulate that internal structural changes or laying down wooden flooring calls for a licence from the Landlord consenting to such alterations. Where you fail to have the paperwork to hand do not contact the landlord without checking with your solicitor before hand.
  • Some Crewe leases require Licence to Assign from the landlord. If this is the case, you should place the estate agents on notice to make sure that the purchasers put in hand bank and professional references. Any bank reference will need to confirm that the buyers are able to meet the annual 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 you are supposed to have a share in the Management Company, you should ensure that you hold the original share certificate. Organising a re-issued share certificate can be a lengthy process and delays many a Crewe home move. Where a reissued share certificate is required, you should approach the company officers or managing agents (if relevant) for this as soon as possible.

  • I bought a 1 bedroom flat in Crewe, conveyancing was carried out 3 years ago. Can you shed any light on how much the price could be for a 90 year extension to my lease? Equivalent properties in Crewe with over 90 years remaining are worth £233,000. The average or mid-range amount of ground rent is £55 yearly. The lease comes to an end on 21st October 2099

    You have 75 years remaining on your lease we estimate the price of your lease extension to range between £11,400 and £13,200 as well as costs.

    The figure that we have given is a general guide to costs for renewing a lease, but we are not able to supply a more accurate figure without more comprehensive investigations. You should not use this information in a Notice of Claim or as an informal offer. There are no doubt other concerns that need to be taken into account and you obviously should be as accurate as possible in your negotiations. Neither should you move forward based on this information before seeking the advice of a professional.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Crewe