Common questions relating to Easthampstead leasehold conveyancing
I have just appointed agents to market my 2 bed flat in Easthampstead.Conveyancing lawyers have not yet been instructed but I have just had a quarterly service charge demand – Do I pay up?
It best that you clear the service charge 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 until 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 today plan to offer on a house that appears to be perfect, at a reasonable figure which is making it all the more appealing. I have subsequently been informed that it's a leasehold as opposed to freehold. I would have thought that there are issues buying a leasehold house in Easthampstead. Conveyancing advisers have are about to be instructed. Will my lawyers set out the implications of buying a leasehold house in Easthampstead ?
The majority of houses in Easthampstead are freehold and not 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 Easthampstead so you should seriously consider looking for a Easthampstead conveyancing solicitor and be sure that they are used to transacting on leasehold houses. As a matter of priority you will need to check the unexpired lease term. Being a leaseholder you will not be at liberty to do whatever you want to the property. The lease comes with conditions for example obtaining the freeholder’spermission to carry out changes to the property. You may also be required to pay a service charge towards the upkeep of the estate where the property is part of an estate. Your solicitor will appraise you on the various issues.
I am tempted by the attractive purchase price for a two apartments in Easthampstead which have approximately fifty years remaining on the lease term. Should I regard a short lease as a deal breaker?
There are no two ways about it. A leasehold apartment in Easthampstead is a deteriorating asset as a result of the reducing lease term. The closer the lease gets to its expiry date, the more it adversely affects the marketability of the premises. For most purchasers 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 a residence 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 Easthampstead 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 advice can you give us when it comes to choosing a Easthampstead conveyancing firm to deal with our lease extension?
If you are instructing a solicitor for your lease extension (regardless if they are a Easthampstead conveyancing practice) it is most important that they be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of conveyancing. We suggested that you speak with several firms including non Easthampstead conveyancing practices prior to instructing a firm. If the firm is ALEP accredited then that’s a bonus. Some following of questions might be useful:
- How familiar is the firm with lease extension legislation?
What are the common defects that you see in leases for Easthampstead properties?
There is nothing unique about leasehold conveyancing in Easthampstead. All leases are individual and drafting errors can sometimes mean that certain provisions are wrong. The following missing provisions could result in a defective lease:
- A provision to repair to or maintain elements of the property
- A duty to insure the building
- Clauses dealing with recovering service charges for expenditure on the building or common parts.
- Maintenance charge proportions which don’t add up to the correct percentage
You will have a problem when selling your property if you have a defective lease as they can affect a potential buyer’s ability to obtain a mortgage. Santander, Norwich and Peterborough Building Society, and Godiva Mortgages Ltd all have very detailed requirements when it comes to what is expected in a lease. Where a lender has been advised by their lawyers that the lease is defective they may refuse to grant the mortgage, obliging the buyer to pull out.
I am the registered owner of a 2 bed flat in Easthampstead, conveyancing was carried out in 2008. Can you let me have an estimate of the premium that my landlord can legally expect in return for granting a renewal of my lease? Similar flats in Easthampstead with an extended lease are worth £169,000. The ground rent is £50 invoiced every year. The lease terminates on 21st October 2089
With 66 years unexpired we estimate the price of your lease extension to range between £12,400 and £14,200 as well as professional fees.
The suggested premium range that we have given is a general guide to costs for renewing a lease, but we cannot give you a more accurate figure in the absence of comprehensive investigations. Do not use the figures in tribunal or court proceedings. There may be additional concerns that need to be taken into account and you obviously should be as accurate as possible in your negotiations. Please do not take any other action based on this information before seeking the advice of a professional.