Fixed-fee leasehold conveyancing in Forest of Dean:

Any conveyancing solicitor can theoretically handle your leasehold conveyancing in Forest of Dean, your mortgage provider may unwilling to work with them if the firm are not on their list of approved solicitors for conveyancing

Sample questions relating to Forest of Dean leasehold conveyancing

My partner and I may need to let out our Forest of Dean ground floor flat temporarily due to a new job. We used a Forest of Dean conveyancing practice in 2004 but they have closed and we did not have the foresight to seek any guidance as to whether the lease permits subletting. How do we find out?

A small minority of properties in Forest of Dean do contain a provision to say that subletting is only permitted with prior consent from the landlord. The landlord is not entitled to unreasonably refuse but, in such cases, they would need to review references. Experience suggests that problems are usually caused by unsatisfactory tenants rather than owner-occupiers and for that reason you can expect the freeholder to take up the references and consider them carefully before granting consent.

I've recently bought a leasehold flat in Forest of Dean. Am I liable to pay service charges for periods before 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. However, 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 advice can you give us when it comes to appointing a Forest of Dean conveyancing practice to deal with our lease extension?

If you are instructing a property lawyer for lease extension works (regardless if they are a Forest of Dean conveyancing firm) it is essential that they be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of work. We recommend that you talk with two or three firms including non Forest of Dean conveyancing practices before you instructing a firm. If the firm is ALEP accredited then so much the better. Some following of questions might be helpful:

  • If the firm is not ALEP accredited then what is the reason?
  • Can they put you in touch with client in Forest of Dean who can give a testimonial?

  • Our conveyancer has advised that he intends to complete and exchange simultaneously on the disposal of our £275000 flat in Forest of Dean in 10 days. The freeholder has quoted £336 for Landlord’s certificate, insurance certificate and previous years statements of service charge. Is the landlord entitled to charge such fees for a flat conveyance in Forest of Dean?

    For the majority of leasehold sales in Forest of Dean conveyancing will involve, queries regarding the management of a building inevitably needing to be answered directly by the freeholder or its agent, this includes :

    • Completing conveyancing due diligence enquiries
    • Where consent is required before sale in Forest of Dean
    • Supplying insurance information
    • Deeds of covenant upon sale
    • Registering of the assignment of the change of lessee after a sale
    Your lawyer will have no control over the level of the charges for this information but the average costs for the information for Forest of Dean leasehold property is £350. For Forest of Dean conveyancing transactions it is customary for the seller to pay for these costs. The landlord or their agents are under no legal obligation to answer such questions most will be willing to do so - albeit often at exorbitant prices where the fees bear little relation to the work involved. Unfortunately there is no law that requires fixed charges for administrative tasks. Neither is there any legal time frame by which they are obliged to provide answers.

    What are the common problems that you witness in leases for Forest of Dean properties?

    Leasehold conveyancing in Forest of Dean is not unique. All leases are individual and legal mistakes in the legal wording can sometimes mean that certain provisions are not included. For example, if your lease is missing any of the following, it could be defective:

    • 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 as they can affect a potential buyer’s ability to obtain a mortgage. HSBC Bank, Norwich and Peterborough Building Society, and Barclays Direct all have very detailed requirements when it comes to what is expected in a lease. If a mortgage lender believes that the lease is problematic they may refuse to grant the mortgage, forcing the purchaser to withdraw.

    I bought a 1st floor flat in Forest of Dean, conveyancing formalities finalised 1997. 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? Equivalent properties in Forest of Dean with a long lease are worth £195,000. The ground rent is £65 charged once a year. The lease expires on 21st October 2101

    With 78 years left to run we estimate the premium for your lease extension to range between £10,500 and £12,000 plus costs.

    The suggested premium range above a general guide to costs for renewing a lease, but we cannot give you a more accurate figure without more detailed investigations. You should not use the figures in a Notice of Claim or as an informal offer. There may be other issues that need to be considered and you obviously want to be as accurate as possible in your negotiations. Please do not take any other action based on this information without first getting professional advice.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Forest of Dean