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Frequently asked questions relating to Darley Abbey leasehold conveyancing

I have just started marketing my garden apartment in Darley Abbey.Conveyancing solicitors are to be appointed soon but I have just had a quarterly maintenance charge demand – what should I do?

The sensible thing to do is 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. This will smooth the conveyancing process.

I am hoping to put an offer on a small detached house that appears to be perfect, at a great figure which is making it more attractive. I have since found out that it's a leasehold as opposed to freehold. I am assuming that there are particular concerns buying a house with a leasehold title in Darley Abbey. Conveyancing solicitors have are soon to be instructed. Will they explain the issues?

Most houses in Darley Abbey are freehold rather than leasehold. This is one of the situations where having a local conveyancer used to dealing with such properties who can assist with the conveyancing process. We note that you are buying in Darley Abbey in which case you should be looking for a Darley Abbey conveyancing practitioner and check that they are used to transacting on leasehold houses. First you will need to check the unexpired lease term. Being a leaseholder you will not be at liberty to do whatever you want with the house. The lease comes with conditions for example obtaining the freeholder’sconsent to carry out alterations. It may be necessary to pay a service charge towards the upkeep of the estate where the house is located on an estate. Your solicitor should appraise you on the various issues.

Last month I purchased a leasehold house in Darley Abbey. Do I have any liability for service charges relating to a period prior to 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. However, 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).

Can you offer any advice when it comes to appointing a Darley Abbey conveyancing firm to carry out our lease extension conveyancing?

When appointing a conveyancer for your lease extension (regardless if they are a Darley Abbey conveyancing practice) it is essential that he or she should be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of conveyancing. We advise that you make enquires with several firms including non Darley Abbey conveyancing practices prior to instructing a firm. If the firm is ALEP accredited then that’s a bonus. Some following of questions could be of use:

  • How familiar is the firm with lease extension legislation?
  • Can they put you in touch with client in Darley Abbey who can give a testimonial?

  • We expect to complete the disposal of our £150000 maisonette in Darley Abbey in six days. The managing agents has quoted £324 for Landlord’s certificate, insurance certificate and 3 years service charge statements. Is it legal for a freeholder to charge such fees for a leasehold conveyance in Darley Abbey?

    Darley Abbey conveyancing on leasehold apartments usually requires the purchaser’s lawyer submitting enquiries for the landlord to address. Although the landlord is not legally bound to answer such questions most will be willing to do so. They are at liberty invoice a reasonable administration fee for responding to enquiries or supplying documentation. There is no upper cap for such fees. The average costs for the information that you are referring to is over three hundred pounds, in some cases it is in excess of £800. The management information fee levied by the landlord must be sent together with a synopsis of entitlements and obligations in relation to administration fees, without which the charge is not strictly payable. Reality however dictates that one has no option but to pay whatever is requested of you if you want to sell the property.

    I am the registered owner of a 1st floor flat in Darley Abbey, conveyancing was carried out half a dozen years ago. Can you work out an approximate cost of a lease extension? Corresponding properties in Darley Abbey with over 90 years remaining are worth £193,000. The ground rent is £60 invoiced every year. The lease comes to an end on 21st October 2093

    You have 72 years left to run the likely cost is going to be between £9,500 and £11,000 as well as professional fees.

    The figure above a general guide to costs for extending a lease, but we cannot give you the actual costs in the absence of comprehensive investigations. You should not use the figures in tribunal or court proceedings. There are no doubt additional issues that need to be taken into account and clearly you want to be as accurate as possible in your negotiations. Please do not move forward based on this information without first getting professional advice.

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    Lease Extensions in Darley Abbey