Fixed-fee leasehold conveyancing in Hove:

While any conveyancing practice can theoretically handle your leasehold conveyancing in Hove, your mortgage provider may not be willing to work with them if the firm are not on their list of approved solicitors for conveyancing

Hove leasehold conveyancing: Q and A’s

I am on look out for some leasehold conveyancing in Hove. Before I set the wheels in motion I want to be sure as to the unexpired term of the lease.

If the lease is registered - and 99.9% are in Hove - then the leasehold title will always include the basic details of the lease, namely the date; the term; and the original parties. From a conveyancing perspective such details then enable any prospective buyer and lender to confirm that any lease they are looking at is the one relevant to that title.For any other purpose, such as confirming how long the term was granted for and calculating what is left, then the register should be sufficient on it's own.

Expecting to sign contracts shortly on a studio apartment in Hove. Conveyancing solicitors inform me that they are sending me a report tomorrow. Are there areas in the report that I should be focusing on?

The report on title for your leasehold conveyancing in Hove should include some of the following:

  • Are you allowed to have a pet in the flat?
  • Ground rent - how much and when you need to pay, and also know whether this will change in the future
  • An explanation as to the provision in the lease to pay service charges - with regard to both the building, and the more general rights a leaseholder has
  • I don't know whether the lease allows me to alter or improve anything in the flat - you should know whether it applies to all alterations or just structural alteration, and whether consent is required
  • The landlord’s obligations to repair and maintain the building. It is important that you know who is responsible for the repair and maintenance of every part of the building
  • Responsibility for repairing the window frames
  • What the implications are if you breach a clause of your lease? For details of the information to be contained in your report on your leasehold property in Hove please ask your conveyancer in advance of your conveyancing in Hove

  • Last month I purchased a leasehold property in Hove. Am I liable to pay service charges relating to a period prior to completion of my purchase?

    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).

    Do you have any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in Hove from the point of view of saving time on the sale process?

    • Much of the frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Hove can be reduced where you appoint lawyers the minute your agents start advertising the property and ask them to collate the leasehold documentation which will be required by the buyers conveyancers.
    • The majority landlords or managing agents in Hove levy fees for providing management packs for a leasehold property. You or your lawyers should find out the actual amount of the charges. The management pack can be applied for on or before finding a buyer, thus reducing delays. The average time it takes to receive management information is three weeks. It is the most common cause of frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Hove.
  • A minority of Hove leases require Landlord’s consent to the sale and approval of the buyers. If this is the case, you should place the estate agents on notice to make sure that the purchasers obtain bank and professional references. The bank reference should make it clear that the buyer is financially capable of paying the yearly service charge and the actual amount of the service charge should be quoted in the bank’s letter. You will therefore need to provide your estate agents with the actual amount of the service charge so that they can pass this information on to the purchasers or their solicitors.
  • If you have had any disputes with your freeholder or managing agents it is essential that these are resolved before the property is marketed. The purchasers and their solicitors will be warry about purchasing a flat where there is a current dispute. You may need to swallow your pride and discharge any arrears of service charge or resolve the dispute prior to the buyers completing the purchase. It is therefore preferable to have any dispute settled ahead of the contract papers being issued to the buyers’ solicitors. You are still duty bound to disclose particulars of the dispute to the purchasers, but it is better to present the dispute as over as opposed to unresolved.
  • You may think that you are aware of the number of years left on your lease but it would be advisable double-check by asking your lawyers. A purchaser's lawyer will not be happy to advise their client to proceed with the purchase of a leasehold property the remaining number of years is below 75 years. In the circumstances it is important at an early stage that you identify whether the lease requires a lease extension. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your home on the market for sale.

  • In relation to leasehold conveyancing in Hove what are the most frequent lease defects?

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

    • Repairing obligations to or maintain elements of the property
    • Insurance obligations
    • 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

    You could have difficulties when selling your property if you have a defective lease primarily because it impacts on the ability to obtain a mortgage on the property. Accord Mortgages Ltd, Norwich and Peterborough Building Society, and Clydesdale all have express requirements when it comes to what is expected in a lease. If a mortgage lender believes that the lease is defective they may refuse to grant the mortgage, forcing the buyer to withdraw.

    Hove Conveyancing for Leasehold Flats - Examples of Queries Prior to Purchasing

      Does this lease have more than 90 years unexpired? How much is the yearly service fee and ground rent? Generally speaking the cost for major works are not incorporated into the maintenance charges, although some managing agents in Hove ask tenants to contribute towards a reserve fund and this is used to offset against major works.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Hove