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Questions and Answers: Halkyn leasehold conveyancing

I am in need of some leasehold conveyancing in Halkyn. Before I get started I require certainty as to the number of years remaining on the lease.

If the lease is registered - and 99.9% are in Halkyn - 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.

I would like to rent out my leasehold flat in Halkyn. Conveyancing solicitor who did the purchase is retired - so can't ask her. Do I need to ask my freeholder for their consent?

A lease dictates the relationship between the landlord and you the flat owner; specifically, it will say if subletting is not allowed, or permitted but only subject to certain caveats. The accepted inference is that if the lease contains no expres ban or restriction, subletting is permitted. The majority of leases in Halkyn do not contain strict prohibition on subletting – such a provision would undoubtedly devalue the property. Instead, there is usually a basic requirement that the owner notifies the freeholder, possibly sending a duplicate of the tenancy agreement.

Having checked my lease I have discovered that there are only 72 years remaining on my lease in Halkyn. I am keen to extend my lease but my landlord is missing. What should I do?

If you qualify, 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 mean that your lease can be granted an extra 90 years by the Court. You will be obliged to demonstrate that you or your lawyers have used your best endeavours to locate the lessor. For most situations an enquiry agent may be useful to try and locate and prepare a report to be accepted by the court as evidence that the freeholder is indeed missing. It is wise to seek advice from a solicitor in relation to proving the landlord’s disappearance and the application to the County Court overseeing Halkyn.

I am a negotiator for a long established estate agent office in Halkyn where we see a number of leasehold sales put at risk as a result of leases having less than 80 years remaining. I have received inconsistent advice from local Halkyn conveyancing firms. Could you shed some light as to whether the seller of a flat can commence the lease extension process for the buyer?

As long as 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 proposed purchaser need not have to sit tight for 2 years to extend their lease. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment needs to be completed prior to, or at the same time as completion of the sale.

Alternatively, it may be possible to extend the lease informally by agreement with the landlord 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 purchaser.

Completion in due on the disposal of our £425000 garden flat in Halkyn next week. The landlords agents has quoted £408 for Certificate of Compliance, insurance certificate and previous years service charge statements. Is the landlord entitled to charge such fees for a flat conveyance in Halkyn?

Halkyn conveyancing on leasehold apartments often requires the buyer’s lawyer submitting questions for the landlord to answer. Although the landlord is under no legal obligation to respond to these enquiries most will be willing to do so. They are entitled invoice a reasonable charge for answering enquiries or supplying documentation. There is no upper cap for such fees. The average costs for the paperwork that you are referring to is £350, in some situations it is above £800. The administration charge invoiced by the landlord must be sent together with a summary of entitlements and obligations in respect of administration fees, without which the invoice is not strictly payable. In reality one has little option but to pay whatever is requested of you should you wish to exchange contracts with the buyer.

I purchased a garden flat in Halkyn, conveyancing having been completed 9 years ago. Can you please calculate a probable premium for a statutory lease extension? Corresponding properties in Halkyn with an extended lease are worth £236,000. The average or mid-range amount of ground rent is £55 per annum. The lease runs out on 21st October 2092

With just 70 years remaining on your lease we estimate the price of your lease extension to be between £8,600 and £9,800 as well as costs.

The figure above a general guide to costs for renewing a lease, but we are not able to provide a more accurate figure in the absence of comprehensive investigations. You should not use this information in tribunal or court proceedings. There are no doubt additional issues that need to be taken into account and clearly you should be as accurate as possible in your negotiations. Neither should you take any other action based on this information before getting professional advice.

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Lease Extensions in Halkyn