Guaranteed fixed fees for Leasehold Conveyancing in Hastings

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Examples of recent questions relating to leasehold conveyancing in Hastings

Having checked my lease I have discovered that there are only 62 years unexpired on my lease in Hastings. I now wish to get lease extension but my freeholder is missing. What options are available to me?

If you qualify, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can apply to the County Court for an order to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will enable the lease to be granted an extra 90 years by the Court. However, you will be required to demonstrate that you have done all that could be expected to find the freeholder. In some cases an enquiry agent should be helpful to try and locate and prepare an expert document to be used as proof that the freeholder can not be located. It is advisable to get professional help from a conveyancer both on proving the landlord’s absence and the vesting order request to the County Court covering Hastings.

I have just appointed agents to market my ground floor flat in Hastings.Conveyancing lawyers have not yet been instructed but I have just received a yearly maintenance charge demand – what should I do?

It best that you pay the invoice 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 until 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. This will smooth the conveyancing process.

I am employed by a reputable estate agent office in Hastings where we see a few flat sales derailed as a result of short leases. I have been given inconsistent advice from local Hastings conveyancing solicitors. Can you clarify whether the vendor of a flat can instigate the lease extension formalities for the purchaser on completion of the sale?

As long as the seller has been the owner 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 wait 2 years for a lease extension. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment has to be done before, or at the same time as completion of the sale.

An alternative approach is 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 purchaser.

What are your top tips when it comes to choosing a Hastings conveyancing firm to deal with our lease extension?

When appointing a solicitor for lease extension works (regardless if they are a Hastings conveyancing practice) it is imperative that he or she should be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of conveyancing. We suggested that you speak with two or three firms including non Hastings conveyancing practices before you instructing a firm. Where the conveyancing practice is ALEP accredited then that’s a bonus. Some following of questions might be of use:

  • How experienced is the firm with lease extension legislation?
  • Can they put you in touch with client in Hastings who can give a testimonial?

  • Do you have any advice for leasehold conveyancing in Hastings with the purpose of speeding up the sale process?

    • A significant proportion of the frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Hastings can be bypassed if you instruct lawyers the minute your agents start marketing the property and request that they start to put together the leasehold documentation which will be required by the buyers conveyancers.
    • The majority freeholders or Management Companies in Hastings levy fees for providing management packs for a leasehold property. You or your lawyers should enquire as to the fee that they propose to charge. The management pack sought as soon as you have a buyer, thus reducing delays. The typical amount of time it takes to obtain the necessary information is three weeks. It is the most common cause of delay in leasehold conveyancing in Hastings.
  • If you have had conflict with your landlord or managing agents it is essential that these are settled before the property is marketed. The buyers and their solicitors will be warry about purchasing a property where there is a current dispute. You will have to accept that you will have to pay any arrears of service charge or resolve the dispute prior to completion of the sale. It is therefore preferable to have any dispute settled ahead of the contract papers being issued to the buyers’ solicitors. You will still have to reveal details of the dispute to the buyers, but it is clearly preferable to reveal the dispute as historic as opposed to unresolved.
  • If you are supposed to have a share in the Management Company, you should make sure that you are holding the original share document. Organising a replacement share certificate is often a time consuming formality and frustrates many a Hastings conveyancing deal. Where a duplicate share is necessary, you should approach the company director and secretary or managing agents (if applicable) for this as soon as possible.
  • You believe that you know the number of years remaining on your lease but it would be advisable verify this via your lawyers. A buyer’s conveyancer will not be happy to advise their client to to exchange contracts if the remaining number of years is less than 80 years. In the circumstances it is essential at an as soon as possible that you consider whether the lease for your property needs extending. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your property on the market for sale.

  • I bought a 1 bedroom flat in Hastings, conveyancing having been completed 2007. Can you work out an approximate cost of a lease extension? Corresponding flats in Hastings with a long lease are worth £261,000. The ground rent is £65 charged once a year. The lease ends on 21st October 2083

    You have 63 years unexpired the likely cost is going to be between £16,200 and £18,600 plus professional fees.

    The figure above a general guide to costs for extending a lease, but we cannot give you a more accurate figure without more detailed investigations. Do not use this information in a Notice of Claim or as an informal offer. There may be other issues that need to be taken into account and you obviously should be as accurate as possible in your negotiations. Neither should you take any other action placing reliance on this information before seeking the advice of a professional.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Hastings