Fixed-fee leasehold conveyancing in Cross Keys:

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Frequently asked questions relating to Cross Keys leasehold conveyancing

I am intending to let out my leasehold flat in Cross Keys. Conveyancing solicitor who did the purchase is retired - so can't ask her. Is permission from the freeholder required?

A small minority of properties in Cross Keys do contain a provision to say that subletting is only permitted with prior consent from the landlord. The landlord cannot unreasonably refuse but, in such cases, they would need to review references. Experience dictates that problems are usually caused by unsatisfactory tenants rather than owner-occupiers and for that reason you can expect the freeholder to take up the references and consider them carefully before granting permission.

I’m about to sell my garden flat in Cross Keys.Conveyancing has not commenced but I have just had a quarterly service charge demand – what should I do?

Your conveyancing lawyer is likely to suggest that you should discharge the service charge 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 management companies 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.

I own a leasehold flat in Cross Keys. Conveyancing and Santander mortgage organised. A letter has just been received from someone saying they have taken over the reversionary interest in the property. It included a demand for arrears of ground rent dating back to 1997. The conveyancing practitioner in Cross Keys who previously acted has long since retired.Do I pay?

The first thing you should do is make enquiries of the Land Registry to be sure that the individual purporting to own the freehold is in fact the new freeholder. You do not need to incur the fees of a Cross Keys conveyancing firm to do this as you can do this on the Land Registry website for less than a fiver. You should note 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 work for a long established estate agent office in Cross Keys where we have experienced a number of flat sales jeopardised as a result of leases having less than 80 years remaining. I have been given contradictory information from local Cross Keys conveyancing solicitors. Please can you shed some light as to whether the owner of a flat can initiate the lease extension process 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 kick-start the lease extension process and assign the benefit of the notice to the purchaser. This means that the proposed purchaser can avoid having to sit tight for 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 simultaneously with completion of the disposal of the property.

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 Cross Keys with the purpose of expediting the sale process?

  • A significant proportion of the frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Cross Keys can be bypassed where you instruct lawyers as soon as your agents start marketing the property and request that they start to put together the leasehold documentation needed by the purchasers’ representatives.
  • Many freeholders or managing agents in Cross Keys charge for providing management packs for a leasehold property. You or your lawyers should find out the actual amount of the charges. The management pack sought as soon as you have a buyer, thus reducing delays. The typical amount of time it takes to receive management information is three weeks. It is the most usual cause of delay in leasehold conveyancing in Cross Keys.
  • A minority of Cross Keys 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 obtain financial (bank) and professional references. The bank reference will need to confirm that the buyers are financially capable of paying 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 actual amount of the service charge so that they can pass this information on to the purchasers or their solicitors.
  • If there is a history of any disputes with your freeholder or managing agents it is very important that these are settled before the property is put on the market. The purchasers and their solicitors will be concerned about purchasing a flat where there is a current dispute. You may need to swallow your pride and discharge any arrears of service charge or settle the dispute prior to the buyers completing the purchase. It is therefore preferable to have any dispute settled ahead of the contract papers being issued to the buyers’ solicitors. You are still duty bound to disclose particulars of the dispute to the purchasers, but it is clearly preferable to reveal the dispute as over as opposed to ongoing.
  • You may think that you are aware of the number of years left on your lease but you should verify this via your lawyers. A buyer’s conveyancer will not be happy to advise their client to where the lease term is under 80 years. In the circumstances it is essential at an as soon as possible that you consider whether the lease requires a lease extension. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your home on the market for sale.

  • Cross Keys Conveyancing for Leasehold Flats - Sample of Queries Prior to Purchasing

      Is the freehold reversion owned collectively by the leaseholders? Plenty Cross Keys leasehold properties will incur a service charge for the upkeep of the block invoiced by the freeholder. Should you purchase the property you will have to pay this liability, normally periodically throughout the year. This could vary from two or three hundred pounds to thousands of pounds for buildings with lifts and large common areas. There will also be a ground rent to be met yearly, this is usually not a exorbitant figure, say about £50-£100 but you need to enquire it because occasionally it can be many hundreds of pounds. Best to be warned if window replacement or some other major work is pending to be shared between the leasehold owners and will dramatically increase the the maintenance costs or necessitate a specific invoice.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Cross Keys