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Hyde Park leasehold conveyancing: Q and A’s

I am hoping to put an offer on a small detached house that appears to tick a lot of boxes, at a great price which is making it all the more appealing. I have subsequently been informed that the title is leasehold rather than freehold. I am assuming that there are issues purchasing a house with a leasehold title in Hyde Park. Conveyancing solicitors have not yet been appointed. Will they explain the issues?

Most houses in Hyde Park are freehold and not leasehold. This is one of the situations where having a local conveyancer who is familiar with the area can help the conveyancing process. it is apparent that you are buying in Hyde Park so you should seriously consider looking for a Hyde Park conveyancing solicitor and be sure that they have experience in transacting on leasehold houses. First you will need to check the unexpired lease term. As a leaseholder you will not be entirely free to do whatever you want to the property. The lease comes with conditions for example obtaining the landlord’spermission to carry out changes to the property. You may also be required to pay a maintenance charge towards the maintenance of the estate where the house is part of an estate. Your conveyancer should report to you on the legal implications.

I am tempted by the attractive purchase price for a two apartments in Hyde Park which have in the region of fifty years left on the lease term. Should I regard a short lease as a deal breaker?

A lease is a legal document that entitles you to use the property for a prescribed time frame. As the lease shortens the saleability of the lease deteriorate and it becomes more costly to acquire a lease extension. For this reason it is often a good idea to increase the term of the lease. It is often difficult to sell a property with a short lease because mortgage companies may be reluctant to lend money on such properties. Lease enfranchisement can be a protracted process. We recommend you get professional assistance from a conveyancer and surveyor with experience in this field

I work for a long established estate agent office in Hyde Park where we have experienced a number of flat sales put at risk due to short leases. I have been given conflicting advice from local Hyde Park conveyancing firms. Could you shed some light as to whether the owner of a flat can instigate the lease extension formalities for the purchaser on completion of the sale?

As long as the seller has owned the lease for at least 2 years it is possible, to serve a Section 42 notice to kick-start 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 sit tight for 2 years to extend their lease. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment needs to be completed before, or at the same time as completion of the sale.

Alternatively, it may be possible to extend the lease informally by agreement with the landlord 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 buyer.

Our conveyancer has advised that he intends to complete and exchange simultaneously on the sale of our £200000 maisonette in Hyde Park next Tuesday . The landlords agents has quoted £348 for Certificate of Compliance, building insurance schedule and 3 years service charge statements. Is it legal for a freeholder to charge exorbitant fees for a leasehold conveyance in Hyde Park?

Hyde Park conveyancing on leasehold maisonettes more often than not necessitates the buyer’s solicitor submitting questions for the landlord to answer. Although the landlord is not legally bound to address these enquiries most will be willing to do so. They are entitled charge a reasonable administration fee for responding to questions or supplying documentation. There is no set fee. The average costs for the paperwork that you are referring to is over three hundred pounds, in some situations it is above £800. The management information fee levied by the landlord must be accompanied by a synopsis of entitlements and obligations in relation to administration fees, otherwise the charge is not strictly payable. In reality you have little option but to pay whatever is requested of you if you want to sell the property.

In relation to leasehold conveyancing in Hyde Park what are the most common lease defects?

There is nothing unique about leasehold conveyancing in Hyde Park. All leases are unique and drafting errors can sometimes mean that certain sections are wrong. 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 can cause issues when trying to sell a property primarily because it impacts on the ability to obtain a mortgage on the property. HSBC Bank, Leeds Building Society, and Nottingham Building Society 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 provide security, forcing the purchaser to withdraw.

Hyde Park Leasehold Conveyancing - Examples of Queries before buying

    Please tell me if there are any major works anticipated that will increase the service charges? Best to be warned whether window replacement or some other major work is coming up that will be shared between the tenants and will dramatically increase the the maintenance charges or result in a one time payment. Be sure to investigate if the the lease includes any adverse restrictions in the lease. For example it is fairly common in Hyde Park leases that pets are not allowed in in a block in Hyde Park. If you love the propertyin Hyde Park yet your dog is not allowed to move with you then you will be faced difficult determination.

Other Topics

Lease Extensions in Hyde Park