Fixed-fee leasehold conveyancing in Holmrook:

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Questions and Answers: Holmrook leasehold conveyancing

Estate agents have just been given the go-ahead to market my ground floor flat in Holmrook.Conveyancing is yet to be initiated but I have just had a quarterly service charge demand – what should I do?

The sensible thing to do is pay the service charge 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 management companies 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. Having a clear account will assist your cause and will leave you no worse off financially.

Back In 2003, I bought a leasehold flat in Holmrook. Conveyancing and Barclays mortgage are in place. A letter has just been received from someone saying they have taken over the reversionary interest in the property. Attached was a demand for arrears of ground rent dating back to 1998. The conveyancing practitioner in Holmrook who acted for me is not around.What should I do?

First contact HMLR to be sure that this person is indeed the new freeholder. You do not need to instruct a Holmrook conveyancing practitioner to do this as you can do this on the Land Registry website for a few pound. Rest assured that regardless, even if this is the legitimate 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 Holmrook which have in the region of forty five years left on the lease term. Should I regard a short lease as a deal breaker?

There is no doubt about it. A leasehold apartment in Holmrook is a deteriorating asset as a result of the reducing lease term. The nearer the lease gets to zero years unexpired, the more it reduces the value of the premises. The majority of purchasers and mortgage companies, leases with under eighty years become less and less marketable. 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 premises 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 Holmrook conveyancing experts who will explain the options available to you during an initial telephone conversation free of charge. A more straightforward and quicker method of extending would be to contact your landlord directly and sound him out on the prospect of extending 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 the agreed 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 flat in Holmrook. Do I have any liability for service charges for periods before my ownership?

In a situation 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. Strange as it may seem, 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 be sure 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).

We expect to complete the disposal of our £350000 flat in Holmrook in nine days. The managing agents has quoted £372 for Certificate of Compliance, building insurance schedule and previous years statements of service charge. Is it legal for a freeholder to charge such fees for a flat conveyance in Holmrook?

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

  • Completing pre-contract questions
  • Where consent is required before sale in Holmrook
  • 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 lawyer will have no control over the level of the charges for this information but the average costs for the information for Holmrook leasehold property is £350. For Holmrook 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 obliged to provide the information.

I own a 1st floor flat in Holmrook, conveyancing formalities finalised 2011. Can you give me give me an indication of the likely cost of a lease extension? Corresponding flats in Holmrook with over 90 years remaining are worth £212,000. The average or mid-range amount of ground rent is £60 per annum. The lease terminates on 21st October 2084

With 63 years remaining on your lease the likely cost is going to range between £18,100 and £20,800 as well as costs.

The suggested premium range above a general guide to costs for renewing a lease, but we are not able to provide the actual costs in the absence of detailed due diligence. Do not use this information in a Notice of Claim or as an informal offer. There may be other issues that need to be considered and clearly you should be as accurate as possible in your negotiations. Please do not take any other action based on this information before seeking the advice of a professional.

Other Topics

Lease Extensions in Holmrook