Frequently asked questions relating to Grangetown leasehold conveyancing
Having had my offer accepted I require leasehold conveyancing in Grangetown. Before I set the wheels in motion I would like to find out the unexpired term of the lease.
If the lease is recorded at the land registry - and almost all are in Grangetown - then the leasehold title will always include the short particulars 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.
I have recently realised that I have Fifty years left on my flat in Grangetown. I now wish to extend my lease but my freeholder is missing. What should I do?
On the basis that you qualify, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can submit an application 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 Court. However, you will be required to demonstrate that you or your lawyers have used your best endeavours to find the freeholder. On the whole a specialist would be helpful to conduct investigations and prepare a report to be used as proof that the freeholder can not be located. It is advisable to get professional help from a property lawyer both on investigating the landlord’s absence and the vesting order request to the County Court overseeing Grangetown.
I today plan to offer on a house that appears to tick a lot of boxes, at a great price which is making it more attractive. I have subsequently discovered that it's a leasehold rather than freehold. I would have thought that there are issues buying a house with a leasehold title in Grangetown. Conveyancing solicitors have not yet been instructed. Will my lawyers set out the risks of buying a leasehold house in Grangetown ?
The majority of houses in Grangetown 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. We note that you are buying in Grangetown in which case you should be shopping around for a Grangetown conveyancing solicitor and check that they have experience in advising on leasehold houses. First you will need to check the number of years remaining. Being a lessee you will not be entirely free to do whatever you want to the property. The lease will likely included provisions such as requiring the landlord’sconsent to carry out alterations. You may also be required to pay a maintenance charge towards the upkeep of the estate where the house is part of an estate. Your conveyancer will report to you on the legal implications.
I am employed by a reputable estate agent office in Grangetown where we see a number of leasehold sales put at risk due to short leases. I have received contradictory information from local Grangetown conveyancing solicitors. Could you clarify whether the owner of a flat can instigate the lease extension formalities for the purchaser on completion of the sale?
Provided that the seller has owned the lease for at least 2 years it is possible, to serve a Section 42 notice to start the lease extension process and assign the benefit of the notice to the purchaser. This means that the buyer need not have to sit tight for 2 years for a lease extension. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment needs to be completed prior to, or simultaneously with completion of the disposal of the property.
Alternatively, it may be possible to agree the lease extension with the freeholder either before or after the sale. If you are informally negotiating there are no rules and so you cannot insist on the landlord agreeing to grant an extension or transferring the benefit of an agreement to the buyer.
Are there common defects that you see in leases for Grangetown properties?
There is nothing unique about leasehold conveyancing in Grangetown. All leases are unique and drafting errors can result in certain clauses are missing. The following missing provisions could result in a defective lease:
- A provision to repair to or maintain parts of the property
- A duty to insure the building
- A provision for the recovery of money spent for the benefit of another party.
- Service charge per centages that don't add up correctly leaving a shortfall
A defective lease will likely cause problems when trying to sell a property primarily because it impacts on the ability to obtain a mortgage on the property. Accord Mortgages Ltd, Virgin Money, and Platform Home Loans Ltd all have very detailed conveyancing instructions 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 provide security, obliging the buyer to withdraw.
Grangetown Conveyancing for Leasehold Flats - Sample of Queries Prior to Purchasing
How much is the annual maintenance fee and ground rent?
In the main the outlay for major works are not built into the service charges, although some managing agents in Grangetown ask leaseholders to pay into a sinking fund created for the specific intention of establishing a fund for major repairs or maintenance.
It is important to be aware whether redecorating or some other major work is due in the near future that will be shared amongst the leasehold owners and could well dramatically increase the the service fees or necessitate a one off invoice.