Frequently asked questions relating to Crowthorne leasehold conveyancing
I am on look out for some leasehold conveyancing in Crowthorne. Before I set the wheels in motion I require certainty as to the remaining lease term.
If the lease is recorded at the land registry - and most are in Crowthorne - 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’m about to sell my 2 bed flat in Crowthorne.Conveyancing solicitors are to be appointed soon but I have just received a half-yearly service charge demand – what should I do?
Your conveyancing lawyer is likely to suggest that you should discharge 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 unless 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 Crowthorne. Conveyancing and Barclays mortgage are in place. I have received a letter from someone claiming to own the reversionary interest in the property. It included a demand for arrears of ground rent dating back to 1996. The conveyancing practitioner in Crowthorne who acted for me is not around.Do I pay?
First make enquiries of the Land Registry to make sure that this person is indeed the registered owner of the freehold reversion. You do not need to instruct a Crowthorne conveyancing lawyer to do this as you can do this on the Land Registry website for £3. Rest assured that regardless, even if this is the legitimate landlord, under the Limitation Act 1980 the limitation period for recovery of ground rent is six years.
I've recently bought a leasehold flat in Crowthorne. Am I liable to pay service charges relating to a period prior to my ownership?
In a situation where the service charge has already been demanded from the previous owner and they have not paid you would not usually be personally liable for the arrears. However, your landlord may still be able to take action to forfeit the lease. A critical element of leasehold conveyancing for your conveyancer to ensure 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).
I work for a reputable estate agency in Crowthorne where we have witnessed a few leasehold sales derailed due to short leases. I have received inconsistent advice from local Crowthorne conveyancing firms. Please can you shed some light as to whether the vendor of a flat can instigate 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. The benefit of this is that the proposed purchaser need not have to sit tight for 2 years for a lease extension. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment needs to be completed before, or at the same time as completion of the disposal of the property.
An alternative approach is 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 purchaser.
I invested in buying a ground floor flat in Crowthorne, conveyancing having been completed in 2012. How much will my lease extension cost? Similar properties in Crowthorne with over 90 years remaining are worth £239,000. The ground rent is £65 per annum. The lease comes to an end on 21st October 2070
With only 50 years remaining on your lease the likely cost is going to span between £41,800 and £48,400 plus costs.
The figure that we have given is a general guide to costs for renewing a lease, but we cannot give you the actual costs without more detailed investigations. You should not use this information in tribunal or court proceedings. There may be additional issues that need to be considered and you obviously should be as accurate as possible in your negotiations. You should not move forward placing reliance on this information before getting professional advice.