Questions and Answers: Hyde Park leasehold conveyancing
I am intending to rent out my leasehold apartment in Hyde Park. Conveyancing solicitor who did the purchase is retired - so can't ask him. Do I need to ask my freeholder for permission?
Notwithstanding that your last Hyde Park conveyancing solicitor is not around you can check your lease to check if it allows you to sublet the apartment. The rule is that if the lease is silent, subletting is allowed. There may be a precondition that you need to obtain consent via your landlord or some other party prior to subletting. The net result is you not allowed to sublet in the absence of first obtaining permission. The consent must not not be unreasonably withheld. If your lease does not allow you to sublet you will need to ask your landlord for their consent.
Last month I purchased a leasehold house in Hyde Park. Do I have any liability for service charges relating to a period prior to completion of my purchase?
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. However, 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 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).
What advice can you give us when it comes to appointing a Hyde Park conveyancing firm to deal with our lease extension?
If you are instructing a solicitor for lease extension works (regardless if they are a Hyde Park conveyancing practice) it is imperative that he or she should be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of work. We advise that you talk with two or three firms including non Hyde Park conveyancing practices before you instructing a firm. If the firm is ALEP accredited then so much the better. Some following of questions could be of use:
- If the firm is not ALEP accredited then what is the reason?
Completion in due on our sale of a £275000 garden flat in Hyde Park in just under a week. The management company has quoted £300 for Landlord’s certificate, insurance certificate and 3 years service charge statements. Is the landlord entitled to charge an administration fee for a leasehold conveyance in Hyde Park?
For the majority of leasehold sales in Hyde Park conveyancing will involve, questions about the management of a building inevitably needing to be answered directly by the freeholder or its agent, this includes :
- Answering pre-contract questions
- Where consent is required before sale in Hyde Park
- Supplying insurance information
- Deeds of covenant upon sale
- Registering of the assignment of the change of lessee after a sale
What makes a Hyde Park lease problematic?
There is nothing unique about leasehold conveyancing in Hyde Park. Most leases are individual and drafting errors can result in certain clauses are not included. For example, if your lease is missing any of the following, it could be defective:
- A provision to repair to or maintain elements of the premises
- Insurance obligations
- Clauses dealing with recovering service charges for expenditure on the building or common parts.
- Service charge per centages that don't add up correctly leaving a shortfall
You could have a problem when selling your property if you have a defective lease as they can affect a potential buyer’s ability to obtain a mortgage. Barclays , Virgin Money, and Alliance & Leicester all have very detailed conveyancing instructions when it comes to what is expected in a lease. Where a lender has been advised by their lawyers that the lease is problematic they may refuse to provide security, obliging the buyer to withdraw.
Leasehold Conveyancing in Hyde Park - Examples of Queries before Purchasing
Does the lease have onerous restrictions?
Many Hyde Park leasehold properties will be liable to pay a service bill for maintenance of the building set by the freeholder. Should you buy the apartment you will have to meet this amount, normally quarterly throughout the year. This may differ from several hundred pounds to thousands of pounds for large purpose-built blocks. In all probability there will be a rentcharge for you to pay annual, ordinarily this is not a large amount, say approximately £50-£100 but you need to check it because on occasion it can be prohibitively expensive.
This question is important as a) areas could result in problems for the block as the communal areas may start to deteriorate where repairs are not paid for b) if the tenants have a dispute with the managing agents you will wish to know about it