Frequently asked questions relating to Crowborough leasehold conveyancing
Harry (my fiance) and I may need to let out our Crowborough garden flat for a while due to taking a sabbatical. We used a Crowborough conveyancing practice in 2001 but they have closed and we did not have the foresight to get any advice as to whether the lease permits subletting. How do we find out?
Even though your last Crowborough conveyancing lawyer is not around you can check your lease to check if you are permitted to let out the property. The rule is that if the lease is non-specific, subletting is permitted. There may be a precondition that you must seek permission from your landlord or some other party prior to subletting. The net result is you not allowed to sublet in the absence of prior consent. The consent must not not be unreasonably withheld. If the lease prohibits you from letting out the property you will need to ask your landlord for their consent.
I have recently realised that I have 72 years left on my flat in Crowborough. I now want to get lease extension but my landlord is missing. What should I do?
On the basis that you qualify, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can apply to the County Court for an order to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will enable the lease to be granted an extra 90 years by the Court. However, you will be required to prove that you or your lawyers have used your best endeavours to track down the lessor. In some cases an enquiry agent should be helpful to try and locate and prepare a report which can be used as proof that the freeholder can not be located. It is wise to seek advice from a solicitor both on proving the landlord’s disappearance and the vesting order request to the County Court covering Crowborough.
Can you offer any advice when it comes to choosing a Crowborough conveyancing practice to deal with our lease extension?
If you are instructing a solicitor for your lease extension (regardless if they are a Crowborough conveyancing practice) it is most important that he or she should be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of conveyancing. We advise that you make enquires with two or three firms including non Crowborough conveyancing practices before you instructing a firm. Where the conveyancing practice is ALEP accredited then that’s a bonus. Some following of questions might be helpful:
- What volume of lease extensions have they completed in Crowborough in the last year?
Do you have any advice for leasehold conveyancing in Crowborough with the intention of expediting the sale process?
- A significant proportion of the delay in leasehold conveyancing in Crowborough can be reduced if you instruct lawyers as soon as you market your property and request that they start to put together the leasehold documentation which will be required by the buyers representatives.
- In the event that you altered the property did you need the Landlord’s permission? In particular have you laid down wooden flooring? Crowborough leases often stipulate that internal structural alterations or laying down wooden flooring calls for a licence issued by the Landlord acquiescing to such alterations. If you fail to have the approvals to hand do not contact the landlord without checking with your conveyancer before hand.
Are there frequently found deficiencies that you see in leases for Crowborough properties?
There is nothing unique about leasehold conveyancing in Crowborough. All leases are unique and drafting errors can sometimes mean that certain clauses are erroneous. The following missing provisions could result in a defective lease:
- Repairing obligations to or maintain parts of the building
- A duty to insure the building
- A provision for the recovery of money spent for the benefit of another party.
- Maintenance charge proportions which don’t add up to the correct percentage
You could have a problem when selling your property if you have a defective lease as they can affect a potential buyer’s ability to obtain a mortgage. Nationwide Building Society, Bank of Scotland, and Aldermore all have express requirements when it comes to what is expected in a lease. Where a lender has been advised by their lawyers that the lease is defective they may refuse to grant the mortgage, obliging the buyer to pull out.
Crowborough Conveyancing for Leasehold Flats - Sample of Queries Prior to buying
Many Crowborough leasehold flats will be liable to pay a service charge for the upkeep of the block invoiced by the management company. Should you buy the apartment you will have to pay this amount, normally quarterly during the year. This can vary from two or three hundred pounds to thousands of pounds for large purpose-built blocks. In all likelihood there will be a ground rent for you to pay annual, this is usually not a large amount, say around £25-£75 but you should to check it because on occasion it could be many hundreds of pounds.
Is anyone aware of any major works in the near future that could increase the maintenance charges?
Its a good idea to find out as much as you can about the company managing the block as they can either make life much simpler or a lot more difficult. As the proprietor of a leasehold property you will be at the mercy of the managing agents both financially and when it comes to day to day matters such as the upkeep of the communal areas. Enquire of other tenants if they are happy with them. Finally, investigate as to the dates that you are obliged pay the service charge to the managing agents and precisely how they are spending the funds.