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East Dean leasehold conveyancing: Q and A’s

There are only 68 years left on my lease in East Dean. I now want to extend my lease but my freeholder is absent. What options are available to me?

If you qualify, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can apply to the County Court for an order to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will enable the lease to be lengthened by the magistrate. However, you will be required to prove that you or your lawyers have used your best endeavours to track down the lessor. On the whole a specialist would be useful to carry out a search and prepare an expert document which can be used as proof that the freeholder can not be located. It is wise to seek advice from a conveyancer in relation to devolving into the landlord’s disappearance and the vesting order request to the County Court covering East Dean.

I've found a house that appears to be perfect, at a reasonable price which is making it all the more appealing. I have since discovered that the title is leasehold rather than freehold. I would have thought that there are particular concerns buying a leasehold house in East Dean. Conveyancing advisers have not yet been appointed. Will they explain the issues?

The majority of houses in East Dean are freehold and not leasehold. In this scenario it’s worth having a local conveyancer used to dealing with such properties who can help the conveyancing process. It is clear that you are purchasing in East Dean so you should seriously consider looking for a East Dean conveyancing solicitor and be sure that they have experience in advising on leasehold houses. As a matter of priority you will need to check the unexpired lease term. As a lessee you will not be entirely free to do whatever you want to the property. The lease will likely included provisions such as obtaining the landlord’sconsent to conduct changes to the property. You may also be required to pay a service charge towards the upkeep of the estate where the house is located on an estate. Your conveyancer will appraise you on the various issues.

I am attracted to a two maisonettes in East Dean which have in the region of fifty years left on the leases. should I be concerned?

There is no doubt about it. A leasehold flat in East Dean is a deteriorating asset as a result of the shortening lease. The nearer the lease gets to zero years unexpired, the more it adversely affects the marketability of the property. For most buyers and banks, leases with less than 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 East Dean conveyancing experts who will explain the options available to you during an initial telephone conversation free of charge. A more straightforward and quicker method of extending would be to contact your landlord directly and sound him out on the prospect of extending 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 any new 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.

What are your top tips when it comes to choosing a East Dean conveyancing practice to carry out our lease extension conveyancing?

If you are instructing a solicitor for your lease extension (regardless if they are a East Dean conveyancing firm) it is imperative that they be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of work. We advise that you talk with several firms including non East Dean conveyancing practices before you instructing a firm. If the firm is ALEP accredited then so much the better. Some following of questions could be useful:

  • How familiar is the practice with lease extension legislation?
  • What are the charges for lease extension conveyancing?

  • We expect to complete the disposal of our £250000 garden flat in East Dean in just under a week. The freeholder has quoted £324 for Certificate of Compliance, building insurance schedule and 3 years service charge statements. Is the landlord entitled to charge an administration fee for a leasehold conveyance in East Dean?

    East Dean conveyancing on leasehold maisonettes normally requires the buyer’s conveyancer submitting enquiries for the landlord to address. Although the landlord is not legally bound to respond to such questions most will be content to do so. They are entitled invoice a reasonable charge for responding to enquiries or supplying documentation. There is no set fee. The average fee for the information that you are referring to is over three hundred pounds, in some situations it exceeds £800. The administration charge demanded by the landlord must be sent together with a synopsis of rights and obligations in relation to administration charges, without which the charge is not strictly payable. In reality one has no option but to pay whatever is demanded should you wish to sell the property.

    I purchased a studio flat in East Dean, conveyancing was carried out in 2000. Can you give me give me an indication of the likely cost of a lease extension? Corresponding properties in East Dean with a long lease are worth £172,000. The average or mid-range amount of ground rent is £60 yearly. The lease finishes on 21st October 2085

    With only 63 years remaining on your lease the likely cost is going to range between £18,100 and £20,800 plus plus your own and the landlord's "reasonable" professional fees.

    The figure that we have given is a general guide to costs for extending a lease, but we cannot give you a more accurate figure without more detailed due diligence. You should not use the figures in tribunal or court proceedings. There may be additional concerns that need to be considered and you obviously want to be as accurate as possible in your negotiations. Please do not move forward placing reliance on this information without first getting professional advice.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in East Dean