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Top Five Questions relating to Hermitage leasehold conveyancing

There are only 68 years unexpired on my lease in Hermitage. I need to extend my lease but my freeholder is can not be found. What options are available to me?

On the basis that you meet the appropriate requirements, 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 magistrate. You will be obliged to demonstrate that you or your lawyers have made all reasonable attempts to track down the landlord. For most situations a specialist may be useful to try and locate and prepare a report which can be accepted by the court as proof that the landlord is indeed missing. It is wise to seek advice from a conveyancer in relation to devolving into the landlord’s disappearance and the vesting order request to the County Court covering Hermitage.

I am hoping to put an offer on a small detached house that seems to meet my requirements, at a great figure which is making it all the more appealing. I have subsequently found out that it's a leasehold rather than freehold. I would have thought that there are particular concerns buying a leasehold house in Hermitage. Conveyancing solicitors have are about to be instructed. Will they explain the issues?

Most houses in Hermitage are freehold rather than leasehold. This is one of the situations where having a local solicitor used to dealing with such properties who can help the conveyancing process. it is apparent that you are purchasing in Hermitage so you should seriously consider looking for a Hermitage conveyancing solicitor and check that they are used to advising on leasehold houses. As a matter of priority you will need to check the unexpired lease term. Being a tenant you will not be at liberty to do whatever you want to the property. The lease will likely included provisions for example obtaining the landlord’spermission to conduct changes to the property. It may be necessary to pay a maintenance charge towards the maintenance of the estate where the property is located on an estate. Your solicitor will appraise you on the various issues.

My wife and I purchased a leasehold flat in Hermitage. Conveyancing and Accord Mortgages Ltd mortgage went though with no issue. A letter has just been received from someone claiming to own the reversionary interest in the property. Attached was a ground rent demand for rent dating back to 1992. The conveyancing solicitor in Hermitage who previously acted has now retired.Any advice?

The first thing you should do is contact the Land Registry to be sure that this person is in fact the new freeholder. It is not necessary to instruct a Hermitage conveyancing solicitor to do this as you can do this on the Land Registry website for less than a fiver. Rest assured that in any event, even if this is the legitimate freeholder, under the Limitation Act 1980 the limitation period for recovery of ground rent is six years.

Can you provide any advice for leasehold conveyancing in Hermitage from the perspective of expediting the sale process?

  • A significant proportion of the frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Hermitage can be avoided if you appoint lawyers the minute your agents start advertising the property and ask them to put together the leasehold documentation which will be required by the buyers conveyancers.
  • The majority landlords or managing agents in Hermitage charge for supplying management packs for a leasehold homes. You or your lawyers should discover the fee that they propose to charge. The management pack sought on or before finding a buyer, thus accelerating the process. The average time it takes to receive management information is three weeks. It is the most common reason for frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Hermitage.
  • If you have had any disputes with your landlord or managing agents it is essential that these are settled before the property is put on the market. The buyers and their solicitors will be nervous about purchasing a flat where there is an ongoing dispute. You may need to swallow your pride and discharge any arrears of service charge or settle the dispute prior to the buyers completing the purchase. It is therefore preferable to have any dispute settled prior to the contract papers being issued to the buyers’ solicitors. You are still duty bound to disclose particulars of the dispute to the buyers, but it is better to present the dispute as historic as opposed to ongoing.
  • If you hold a share in a the Management Company, you should make sure that you hold the original share certificate. Obtaining a duplicate share certificate can be a lengthy process and frustrates many a Hermitage conveyancing deal. If a new share certificate is required, do contact 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 solicitors. A buyer’s conveyancer will not be happy to advise their client to where the remaining number of years is less than 80 years. In the circumstances it is important at an early stage that you identify whether the lease term for your property needs extending. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your property on the market for sale.

  • Our conveyancer has advised that he intends to complete and exchange simultaneously on the disposal of our £200000 maisonette in Hermitage next week. The freeholder has quoted £384 for Landlord’s certificate, building insurance schedule and 3 years service charge statements. Is it legal for a freeholder to charge exorbitant fees for a leasehold conveyance in Hermitage?

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

    • Addressing pre-exchange questions
    • Where consent is required before sale in Hermitage
    • Copies of the building insurance and schedule
    • Deeds of covenant upon sale
    • Registering of the assignment of the change of lessee after a sale
    Your conveyancer will have no control over the level of the charges for this information but the average costs for the information for Hermitage leasehold property is £350. For Hermitage 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 required to supply answers.

    Leasehold Conveyancing in Hermitage - A selection of Questions you should ask Prior to buying

      It would be prudent to find out if there is anything that is prohibited in the lease. For instance it is very common in Hermitage leases that pets are not permitted in certain buildings in Hermitage. If you love the flatin Hermitage yet your cat can’t move with you then you have a very hard choice. What is the length of the lease? The prefered form of lease arrangement is where the freehold title is in the ownership of the leaseholders. In this arrangement the leaseholders have control and although a managing agent is often retained where it is larger than a house conversion, the managing agent is directed by the tenants.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Hermitage