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Frequently asked questions relating to Hoole leasehold conveyancing

My partner and I may need to sub-let our Hoole garden flat for a while due to taking a sabbatical. We used a Hoole conveyancing practice in 2003 but they have since shut and we did not think at the time seek any guidance as to whether the lease allows us to sublet. How do we find out?

The lease dictates relations between the freeholder and you the leaseholder; specifically, it will set out if subletting is prohibited, or permitted but only subject to certain caveats. The rule is that if the lease contains no specific ban or restriction, subletting is permitted. The majority of leases in Hoole do not prevent strict prohibition on subletting – such a provision would undoubtedly devalue the property. In most cases there is simply a requirement that the owner notifies the freeholder, possibly sending a copy of the tenancy agreement.

I have recently realised that I have 72 years remaining on my lease in Hoole. I now wish to get lease extension but my freeholder is missing. What are my options?

On the basis that you meet the appropriate requirements, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can submit an application to the County Court for an order to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will mean that your lease can be extended by the Court. You will be obliged to prove that you have used your best endeavours to locate the landlord. In some cases an enquiry agent may be useful to conduct investigations and to produce a report which can be accepted by the court as proof that the landlord can not be located. It is wise to seek advice from a property lawyer both on proving the landlord’s absence and the vesting order request to the County Court covering Hoole.

I’m about to sell my ground floor flat in Hoole.Conveyancing lawyers have not yet been instructed but I have just had a half-yearly maintenance charge demand – should I leave it to the buyer to sort out?

Your conveyancing lawyer is likely to suggest that you should clear 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 managing agents will not acknowledge the buyer unless 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've recently bought a leasehold house in Hoole. Do I have any liability for service charges for periods before my ownership?

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. A critical element 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).

Are there common problems that you come across in leases for Hoole properties?

There is nothing unique about leasehold conveyancing in Hoole. Most leases is drafted differently and legal mistakes in the legal wording can result in certain provisions are not included. The following missing provisions could result in a defective lease:

  • Repairing obligations to or maintain elements of the property
  • A duty to insure the building
  • A provision for the recovery of money spent for the benefit of another party.
  • 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 primarily because it impacts on the ability to obtain a mortgage on the property. Accord Mortgages Ltd, The Mortgage Works, and TSB all have express conveyancing instructions when it comes to what is expected in a lease. Where a lender has been advised by their lawyers that the lease does not cover certain provisions they may refuse to provide security, obliging the purchaser to pull out.

Hoole Leasehold Conveyancing - Examples of Queries Prior to Purchasing

    The answer will be important as a) areas could result in problems in the block as the common areas may begin to deteriorate if repairs are not paid for b) if the leaseholders have an issue with the running of the building you will need to know about it What is the annual service fee and ground rent? On the whole the outlay for major works are not built into the service charges, albeit that a few managing agents in Hoole require leasehold owners to contribute towards a reserve fund created for the specific intention of building a fund for major works.

Other Topics

Lease Extensions in Hoole