Hyde Park leasehold conveyancing: Q and A’s
Having had my offer accepted I require leasehold conveyancing in Hyde Park. Before I get started I want to be sure as to the remaining lease term.
If the lease is registered - and almost all are in Hyde Park - 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.
Last month I purchased a leasehold property in Hyde Park. 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. It is an essential part 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 work for a long established estate agency in Hyde Park where we have experienced a number of flat sales derailed due to short leases. I have been given inconsistent advice from local Hyde Park conveyancing firms. Can you clarify whether the vendor of a flat can commence the lease extension process for the buyer?
As long as the seller has been the owner for at least 2 years it is possible, to serve a Section 42 notice to start the lease extension process and assign the benefit of the notice to the purchaser. The benefit of this is that the buyer need not have to wait 2 years to extend their lease. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment has to be done 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.
What advice can you give us when it comes to appointing a Hyde Park conveyancing practice to deal with our lease extension?
When appointing a solicitor for your lease extension (regardless if they are a Hyde Park conveyancing practice) it is essential that they be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of conveyancing. We recommend that you talk with two or three firms including non Hyde Park conveyancing practices before you instructing a firm. Where the conveyancing practice is ALEP accredited then so much the better. Some following of questions might be useful:
- If the firm is not ALEP accredited then why not?
Can you provide any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in Hyde Park from the point of view of expediting the sale process?
- A significant proportion of the delay in leasehold conveyancing in Hyde Park can be bypassed if you get in touch lawyers the minute your agents start advertising the property and ask them to collate the leasehold information which will be required by the purchasers’ lawyers.
- Many landlords or managing agents in Hyde Park charge for supplying management packs for a leasehold homes. You or your lawyers should find out the fee that they propose to charge. The management pack can be applied for as soon as you have a buyer, thus reducing delays. The average time it takes to receive management information is three weeks. It is the most common reason for frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Hyde Park.
Hyde Park Conveyancing for Leasehold Flats - A selection of Questions you should ask Prior to buying
Does this lease have in excess of 90 years remaining?
If a Hyde Park lease has less than eighty years it will affect the value of the apartment. Check with your bank that they are content with remaining years on the lease. A short lease means that you will most likely have to extend the lease sooner rather than later and you need to have some idea of what this would cost. For most Hyde Parklease extensions you will be required to have owned the property for two years in order to be eligible to extend the lease.
How is the lease structured?