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Questions and Answers: Duffield leasehold conveyancing

I today plan to offer on a house that appears to be perfect, at a reasonable price which is making it more attractive. I have just found out that the title is leasehold as opposed to freehold. I would have thought that there are particular concerns purchasing a leasehold house in Duffield. Conveyancing solicitors have are about to be appointed. Will my lawyers set out the risks of buying a leasehold house in Duffield ?

Most houses in Duffield are freehold rather than leasehold. This is one of the situations where having a local solicitor used to dealing with such properties who can assist with the conveyancing process. it is apparent that you are purchasing in Duffield in which case you should be looking for a Duffield conveyancing practitioner and be sure that they are used to dealing with leasehold houses. As a matter of priority you will need to check the number of years remaining. 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 obtaining the freeholder’spermission to conduct alterations. It may be necessary to pay a maintenance charge towards the maintenance of the estate where the property is located on an estate. Your lawyer will advise you fully on all the issues.

My wife and I purchased a leasehold flat in Duffield. Conveyancing and Barclays Direct mortgage went though with no issue. A letter has just been received from someone saying they have taken over the reversionary interest in the property. It included a demand for arrears of ground rent dating back to 1991. The conveyancing solicitor in Duffield who acted for me is not around.What should I do?

The first thing you should do is contact HMLR to make sure that the individual purporting to own the freehold is in fact the new freeholder. You do not need to instruct a Duffield conveyancing lawyer to do this as you can do this on the Land Registry website for £3. Rest assured that in any event, even if this is the rightful freeholder, under the Limitation Act 1980 no more than 6 years of rent can be collected.

I am looking at a couple of flats in Duffield both have approximately 50 years remaining on the lease term. should I be concerned?

There is no doubt about it. A leasehold apartment in Duffield is a deteriorating asset as a result of the reducing lease term. The nearer the lease gets to zero years unexpired, the more it adversely affects the marketability of the premises. The majority of buyers and lenders, 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 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 Duffield 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 house in Duffield. Do I have any liability for service charges relating to a period prior to my ownership?

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. It is an essential part 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 appointing a Duffield conveyancing firm to carry out our lease extension conveyancing?

When appointing a property lawyer for your lease extension (regardless if they are a Duffield conveyancing firm) it is essential that they be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of work. We suggested that you make enquires with two or three firms including non Duffield conveyancing practices prior to instructing a firm. Where the conveyancing practice is ALEP accredited then so much the better. Some following of questions could be of use:

  • How experienced is the firm with lease extension legislation?
  • What are the legal fees for lease extension conveyancing?

  • I bought a 1st floor flat in Duffield, conveyancing having been completed half a dozen years ago. Can you shed any light on how much the price could be for a 90 year extension to my lease? Corresponding flats in Duffield with a long lease are worth £264,000. The average or mid-range amount of ground rent is £55 invoiced every year. The lease runs out on 21st October 2090

    With 69 years remaining on your lease the likely cost is going to be between £11,400 and £13,200 plus plus your own and the landlord's "reasonable" professional fees.

    The suggested premium range above a general guide to costs for renewing a lease, but we are not able to advice on the actual costs in the absence of detailed investigations. You should not use the figures in tribunal or court proceedings. There are no doubt other concerns that need to be taken into account and you obviously want to be as accurate as possible in your negotiations. Neither should you move forward based on this information before seeking the advice of a professional.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Duffield