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Questions and Answers: Ferryhill leasehold conveyancing

I am on look out for some leasehold conveyancing in Ferryhill. Before diving in I want to be sure as to the number of years remaining on the lease.

If the lease is registered - and most are in Ferryhill - then the leasehold title will always include the basic details of the lease, namely the date; the term; and the original parties. From a conveyancing perspective such details then enable any prospective buyer and lender to confirm that any lease they are looking at is the one relevant to that title.For any other purpose, such as confirming how long the term was granted for and calculating what is left, then the register should be sufficient on it's own.

There are only Seventy years remaining on my flat in Ferryhill. I need to extend my lease but my freeholder is absent. What options are available to me?

If you meet the appropriate requirements, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can apply to the County Court for for permission to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will enable the lease to be granted an extra 90 years by the magistrate. You will be obliged to demonstrate that you or your lawyers have made all reasonable attempts to locate the freeholder. In some cases a specialist should be useful to conduct investigations and prepare an expert document to be used as evidence that the freeholder can not be located. It is advisable to get professional help from a solicitor both on investigating the landlord’s absence and the application to the County Court covering Ferryhill.

I have just started marketing my 2 bed flat in Ferryhill.Conveyancing has not commenced but I have just received a half-yearly maintenance charge demand – what should I do?

The sensible thing to do is pay 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 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. Having a clear account will assist your cause and will leave you no worse off financially.

Last month I purchased a leasehold flat in Ferryhill. Do I have any liability for service charges relating to a period prior to completion of my purchase?

In a situation 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).

Are there common defects that you encounter in leases for Ferryhill properties?

There is nothing unique about leasehold conveyancing in Ferryhill. All leases are individual and legal mistakes in the legal wording can sometimes mean that certain sections are missing. The following missing provisions could result in a defective lease:

  • Repairing obligations to or maintain elements of the property
  • Insurance obligations
  • A provision for the recovery of money spent for the benefit of another party.
  • Maintenance charge proportions which don’t add up to the correct percentage

A defective lease will likely cause issues when trying to sell a property primarily because it impacts on the ability to obtain a mortgage on the property. Halifax, Barnsley Building Society, and Nottingham Building Society all have very detailed conveyancing instructions when it comes to what is expected in a lease. If a mortgage lender believes that the lease is defective they may refuse to grant the mortgage, obliging the purchaser to withdraw.

I invested in buying a basement flat in Ferryhill, conveyancing was carried out half a dozen years ago. How much will my lease extension cost? Similar flats in Ferryhill with over 90 years remaining are worth £192,000. The ground rent is £45 yearly. The lease terminates on 21st October 2094

You have 73 years left to run we estimate the price of your lease extension to be between £11,400 and £13,200 as well as costs.

The suggested premium range above a general guide to costs for extending 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 are no doubt additional concerns that need to be considered and clearly you should be as accurate as possible in your negotiations. Please do not take any other action placing reliance on this information before seeking the advice of a professional.

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Lease Extensions in Ferryhill