Leasehold Conveyancing in Kempston - Get a Quote from the leasehold experts approved by your lender

When it comes to leasehold conveyancing in Kempston, you will need to instruct a conveyancing solicitor with leasehold experience. Whether your mortgage company is to be Halifax, RBS or NatWest make sure you choose a lawyer on their approved list. Feel free to use our search tool

Questions and Answers: Kempston leasehold conveyancing

Estate agents have just been given the go-ahead to market my garden apartment in Kempston.Conveyancing lawyers have not yet been instructed but I have just had a quarterly maintenance charge demand – should I leave it to the buyer to sort out?

It best that you pay the invoice as normal because all ground rent and service charges will be apportioned on completion, so you will be reimbursed by the buyer for the period running from after the completion date to the next payment date. Most managing agents will not acknowledge the buyer until the service charges have been paid and are up to date so it is important for both buyer and seller for the seller to show that they are up to date. This will smooth the conveyancing process.

I am attracted to a couple of apartments in Kempston both have about 50 years remaining on the lease term. Should I regard a short lease as a deal breaker?

A lease is a right to use the premises for a prescribed time frame. As a lease shortens the value of the lease decreases and it becomes more expensive to extend the lease. This is why it is advisable to increase the term of the lease. More often than not it is difficulties arise selling premises with a short lease as mortgage companies less inclined to grant a loan on properties of this type. Lease extension can be a difficult process. We advise that you get professional help from a solicitor and surveyor with experience in this area

Last month I purchased a leasehold house in Kempston. Do I have any liability for service charges relating to a period prior to my ownership?

Where the service charge has already been demanded from the previous lessee 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. 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).

What advice can you give us when it comes to choosing a Kempston conveyancing firm to carry out our lease extension conveyancing?

When appointing a conveyancer for your lease extension (regardless if they are a Kempston conveyancing firm) it is essential that he or she should be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of conveyancing. We recommend that you speak with several firms including non Kempston conveyancing practices prior to instructing a firm. Where the conveyancing practice is ALEP accredited then that’s a bonus. Some following of questions could be of use:

  • What volume of lease extensions have they completed in Kempston in the last 12 months?
  • Can they put you in touch with client in Kempston who can give a testimonial?

  • Do you have any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in Kempston from the perspective of saving time on the sale process?

    • Much of the frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Kempston can be avoided where you get in touch lawyers the minute you market your property and ask them to collate the leasehold information needed by the buyers representatives.
    • If you have carried out any alterations to the residence would they have required Landlord’s consent? Have you, for example installed wooden flooring? Most leases in Kempston state that internal structural alterations or laying down wooden flooring require a licence from the Landlord consenting to such changes. Where you fail to have the paperwork to hand do not contact the landlord without checking with your lawyer before hand.
  • A minority of Kempston leases require Licence to Assign from the landlord. If this applies to your lease, you should place the estate agents on notice to make sure that the purchasers put in hand bank and professional references. Any bank reference should make it clear that the buyer is able to meet the annual 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 service charge figures so that they can pass this information on to the buyers or their solicitors.
  • If you have had any disputes with your landlord or managing agents it is very important that these are resolved prior to the flat being put on the market. The purchasers and their solicitors will be nervous about purchasing a flat where there is an ongoing dispute. You will have to accept that you will have to pay any arrears of service charge or settle the dispute prior to completion of the sale. It is therefore preferable to have any dispute settled ahead of the contract papers being issued to the buyers’ solicitors. You will still have to reveal particulars of the dispute to the purchasers, but it is clearly preferable to reveal the dispute as historic rather than unresolved.
  • You may think that you are aware of the number of years remaining on your lease but it would be advisable double-check via your conveyancers. A buyer’s conveyancer will not be happy to advise their client to where the remaining number of years is below 75 years. In the circumstances it is essential at an early stage that you identify whether the lease term requires a lease extension. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your premises on the market for sale.

  • Kempston Leasehold Conveyancing - A selection of Queries Prior to Purchasing

      It is important to be aware if redecorating or some other major work is pending that will be shared by the tenants and will dramatically impact the level of the service charges or require a specific invoice. The prefered form of lease arrangement is a share of the freehold. In this arrangement the leaseholders have control and even though a managing agent is usually employed where the building is bigger than a house conversion, the managing agent is directed by the tenants. You should be aware that where the lease has fewer than 80 years it will have adverse implications on the salability of the flat. Check with your bank that they are content with remaining years on the lease. Leases with less than 80 years remaining means that you will most likely require a lease extension sooner rather than later and it is worth discovering how much this would cost. For most Kempstonlease extensions you will be required to have owned the premises for two years before you are entitled to carry out a lease extension.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Kempston