Gunnislake leasehold conveyancing: Q and A’s
Planning to exchange soon on a studio apartment in Gunnislake. Conveyancing solicitors inform me that they will have a report out to me within the next couple of days. Are there areas in the report that I should be focusing on?
The report on title for your leasehold conveyancing in Gunnislake should include some of the following:
- You should receive a copy of the lease
Back In 2001, I bought a leasehold flat in Gunnislake. Conveyancing and Accord Mortgages Ltd mortgage are in place. I have received a letter from someone claiming to own the freehold. It included a demand for arrears of ground rent dating back to 1997. The conveyancing solicitor in Gunnislake who previously acted has long since retired.Do I pay?
First contact the Land Registry to make sure that this person is indeed the new freeholder. It is not necessary to instruct a Gunnislake conveyancing firm to do this as it can be done on-line for a few pound. Rest assured that in any event, even if this is the rightful landlord, under the Limitation Act 1980 the limitation period for recovery of ground rent is six years.
I am looking at a couple of apartments in Gunnislake which have in the region of fifty years unexpired on the lease term. Will this present a problem?
There are no two ways about it. A leasehold flat in Gunnislake is a wasting asset as a result of the shortening lease. The nearer the lease gets to zero years unexpired, the more it reduces the salability of the premises. The majority of purchasers and banks, leases with less than eighty 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 Gunnislake conveyancing experts who will explain the options available to you during an initial telephone conversation free of charge. More often than not it is possible to negotiate informally with the freeholder to extend 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.
Last month I purchased a leasehold property in Gunnislake. Am I liable to pay service charges for periods before completion of my purchase?
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. It is an essential part 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 makes a Gunnislake lease defective?
Leasehold conveyancing in Gunnislake is not unique. All leases are unique and drafting errors can sometimes mean that certain clauses 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 building
- Insurance obligations
- 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
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. Nationwide Building Society, Skipton Building Society, and Godiva Mortgages Ltd all have very detailed requirements when it comes to what is expected in a lease. If a mortgage lender believes that the lease is defective they may refuse to provide security, obliging the buyer to withdraw.
Gunnislake Conveyancing for Leasehold Flats - Sample of Queries before buying
Is the freehold owned jointly by the tenants?
Most Gunnislake leasehold properties will have a service bill for maintenance of the block invoiced by the management company. Where you acquire the property you will have to meet this contribution, normally periodically accross the year. This may differ from a few hundred pounds to thousands of pounds for blocks with lifts and large common grounds. There will also be a ground rent to be met annual, normally this is not a exorbitant figure, say approximately £25-£75 but you should to enquire as occasionally it could be many hundreds of pounds.
Are there any major works in the planning that could add a premium to the maintenance fees?