Guaranteed fixed fees for Leasehold Conveyancing in Horwich

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Recently asked questions relating to Horwich leasehold conveyancing

My husband and I may need to sub-let our Horwich basement flat for a while due to a career opportunity. We instructed a Horwich conveyancing firm in 2003 but they have closed and we did not have the foresight to seek any advice as to whether the lease prohibits the subletting of the flat. How do we find out?

A lease governs relations between the freeholder and you the leaseholder; specifically, it will say if subletting is banned, or permitted but only subject to certain conditions. The rule is that if the lease contains no expres ban or restriction, subletting is permitted. Most leases in Horwich do not contain subletting altogether – such a clause would adversely affect the market value the flat. Instead, there is usually simply a requirement that the owner notifies the freeholder, possibly supplying a duplicate of the tenancy agreement.

Last month I purchased a leasehold property in Horwich. Am I liable to pay 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. A critical element 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).

I am employed by a reputable estate agency in Horwich where we have experienced a number of flat sales put at risk as a result of leases having less than 80 years remaining. I have been given contradictory information from local Horwich conveyancing solicitors. Please can you confirm whether the vendor of a flat can commence the lease extension process for the buyer?

Provided that the seller has been the owner for at least 2 years it is possible, to serve a Section 42 notice to commence the lease extension process and assign the benefit of the notice to the purchaser. The benefit of this is that the proposed purchaser need not have to wait 2 years for a lease extension. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment needs to be completed prior to, or simultaneously with completion of the disposal of the property.

Alternatively, it may be possible 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.

Can you offer any advice when it comes to appointing a Horwich conveyancing practice to deal with our lease extension?

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

  • If the firm is not ALEP accredited then what is the reason?
  • What volume of lease extensions has the firm completed in Horwich in the last twenty four months?

  • We expect to complete the sale of our £225000 apartment in Horwich next week. The landlords agents has quoted £372 for Landlord’s certificate, building insurance schedule and 3 years statements of service charge. Is the landlord entitled to charge such fees for a flat conveyance in Horwich?

    Horwich conveyancing on leasehold apartments normally necessitates the buyer’s lawyer submitting questions for the landlord to address. Although the landlord is not legally bound to respond to such questions most will be willing to do so. They may levy a reasonable charge for responding to enquiries or supplying documentation. There is no set fee. The average fee for the paperwork that you are referring to is over three hundred pounds, in some transactions it is in excess of £800. The administration charge invoiced by the landlord must be accompanied by a synopsis of entitlements and obligations in respect of administration charges, otherwise the charge is not strictly payable. Reality however dictates that one has little option but to pay whatever is demanded if you want to sell the property.

    Leasehold Conveyancing in Horwich - A selection of Questions you should ask before buying

      How much is the ground rent and service charge? On the whole the outlay for major works are not included within maintenance charges, although a few managing agents in Horwich ask tenants to pay into a reserve fund and this is used to offset against larger works. Who is in charge of the block?

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Horwich