Datchet leasehold conveyancing: Q and A’s
I have recently realised that I have 62 years remaining on my lease in Datchet. I now wish to extend my lease but my freeholder is absent. What options are available to me?
On the basis that you meet the appropriate requirements, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can submit an application to the County Court for for permission to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will mean that your lease can be granted an extra 90 years by the magistrate. However, you will be required to prove that you or your lawyers have made all reasonable attempts to locate the freeholder. On the whole a specialist would be useful to try and locate and to produce an expert document which can be used as evidence that the landlord can not be located. It is advisable to get professional help from a property lawyer both on devolving into the landlord’s absence and the vesting order request to the County Court overseeing Datchet.
I today plan to offer on a house that appears to be perfect, at a reasonable price which is making it all the more appealing. I have since found out that it's a leasehold as opposed to freehold. I would have thought that there are particular concerns buying a leasehold house in Datchet. Conveyancing solicitors have are soon to be instructed. Will my lawyers set out the risks of buying a leasehold house in Datchet ?
The majority of houses in Datchet are freehold and not leasehold. In this scenario it’s worth having a local conveyancer who is familiar with the area can assist with the conveyancing process. it is apparent that you are buying in Datchet so you should seriously consider looking for a Datchet conveyancing practitioner and check that they are used to dealing with leasehold houses. First you will need to check the unexpired lease term. Being a tenant you will not be entirely free to do whatever you want with the house. The lease will likely included provisions such as requiring the freeholder’spermission to conduct changes to the property. It may be necessary to pay a contribution towards the upkeep of the communal areas where the house is located on an estate. Your lawyer will advise you fully on all the issues.
I am tempted by the attractive purchase price for a two flats in Datchet which have approximately 50 years remaining on the leases. Will this present a problem?
There are no two ways about it. A leasehold flat in Datchet is a deteriorating asset as a result of the shortening lease. The closer the lease gets to zero years unexpired, the more it reduces the salability of the property. For most buyers and lenders, leases with under eighty years become less and less marketable. 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 property 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 property 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 Datchet 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 You may find he or she is happy to negotiate informally and willing to consider your offer straight off, without having to involve anyone else. This will save you time and money and it could help you reach a lower price on the lease. 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 property in Datchet. Do I have any liability for service charges for periods before completion of my purchase?
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).
What are your top tips when it comes to choosing a Datchet conveyancing practice to carry out our lease extension conveyancing?
If you are instructing a conveyancer for your lease extension (regardless if they are a Datchet conveyancing firm) it is imperative that he or she should be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of work. We recommend that you make enquires with two or three firms including non Datchet conveyancing practices before you instructing a firm. If the firm is ALEP accredited then so much the better. Some following of questions could be helpful:
- If the firm is not ALEP accredited then why not?
I purchased a basement flat in Datchet, conveyancing formalities finalised in 2011. Can you shed any light on how much the price could be for a 90 year extension to my lease? Comparable flats in Datchet with an extended lease are worth £196,000. The average or mid-range amount of ground rent is £45 per annum. The lease expires on 21st October 2088
You have 64 years remaining on your lease the likely cost is going to be between £15,200 and £17,600 plus professional fees.
The figure that we have given is a general guide to costs for extending a lease, but we are not able to provide the actual costs in the absence of comprehensive investigations. You should not use the figures in a Notice of Claim or as an informal offer. There may be additional concerns that need to be considered and clearly you want to be as accurate as possible in your negotiations. You should not take any other action based on this information without first getting professional advice.