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Danescourt leasehold conveyancing: Q and A’s

I am in need of some leasehold conveyancing in Danescourt. Before diving in I would like to find out the unexpired term of the lease.

If the lease is recorded at the land registry - and almost all are in Danescourt - 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 am looking at a two flats in Danescourt both have in the region of 50 years remaining on the lease term. Should I regard a short lease as a deal breaker?

There is no doubt about it. A leasehold flat in Danescourt is a deteriorating asset as a result of the reducing lease term. The closer the lease gets to zero years unexpired, the more it adversely affects the salability of the property. For most buyers and banks, leases with under 75 years become less and less attractive. 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 premises 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 Danescourt 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 the agreed 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've recently bought a leasehold house in Danescourt. Do I have any liability for 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. Strange as it may seem, 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).

Can you provide any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in Danescourt with the aim of speeding up the sale process?

  • A significant proportion of the delay in leasehold conveyancing in Danescourt can be avoided if you instruct lawyers as soon as you market your property and request that they start to collate the leasehold documentation needed by the buyers lawyers.
  • If you have carried out any alterations to the premises would they have required Landlord’s approval? Have you, for example installed wooden flooring? Most leases in Danescourt state that internal structural alterations or laying down wooden flooring calls for a licence from the Landlord consenting to such changes. Should you fail to have the paperwork in place you should not contact the landlord without contacting your solicitor first.
  • If there is a history of conflict with your freeholder or managing agents it is very important that these are settled prior to the flat being put on the market. The purchasers and their solicitors will be warry about purchasing a flat where there is an ongoing dispute. You may need to swallow your pride and pay any arrears of service charge or settle the dispute prior to completion of the sale. 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 buyers, but it is better to reveal the dispute as over rather than unsettled.
  • If you have the benefit of shareholding in the Management Company, you should ensure that you have the original share certificate. Organising a new share certificate can be a lengthy process and delays many a Danescourt conveyancing deal. If a new share is necessary, you should approach the company director and secretary or managing agents (where applicable) for this sooner rather than later.
  • You may think that you are aware of the number of years remaining on your lease but you should verify this via your conveyancers. A buyer’s lawyer will be unlikely to recommend their client to proceed with the purchase of a leasehold property the lease term is under 75 years. In the circumstances it is important at an early stage that you consider whether the lease for your property needs extending. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your property on the market for sale.

  • What are the frequently found problems that you witness in leases for Danescourt properties?

    Leasehold conveyancing in Danescourt is not unique. All leases are individual and legal mistakes in the legal wording can sometimes mean that certain provisions are missing. 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
    • A duty to insure the building
    • A provision for the recovery of money spent for the benefit of another party.
    • Service charge per centages that don't add up correctly leaving a shortfall

    A defective lease can cause issues when trying to sell a property primarily because it impacts on the ability to obtain a mortgage on the property. Accord Mortgages Ltd, Leeds Building Society, and Platform Home Loans Ltd all have express conveyancing instructions when it comes to what is expected in a lease. Where a lender has been advised by their lawyers that the lease does not cover certain provisions they may refuse to provide security, obliging the purchaser to withdraw.

    Leasehold Conveyancing in Danescourt - A selection of Queries before Purchasing

      The answer will be helpful as a) areas may result in problems in the block as the communal areas may begin to deteriorate where maintenance remain unpaid b) if the leasehold owners have a dispute with the managing agents you will need to have complete disclosure Who manages the block? Best to be warned whether changing the roof or some other significant cost is pending that will be shared amongst the leaseholders and could well materially impact the level of the maintenance charges or require a specific payment.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Danescourt