Top Five Questions relating to Kings Heath leasehold conveyancing
Having had my offer accepted I require leasehold conveyancing in Kings Heath. Before I set the wheels in motion I require certainty as to the number of years remaining on the lease.
If the lease is registered - and almost all are in Kings Heath - 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.
Estate agents have just been given the go-ahead to market my ground floor apartment in Kings Heath.Conveyancing has not commenced but I have just received a yearly maintenance charge demand – what should I do?
It best that you clear the service charge 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 unless 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 today plan to offer on a 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 would have thought that there are issues purchasing a leasehold house in Kings Heath. Conveyancing advisers have not yet been appointed. Will they explain the issues?
Most houses in Kings Heath are freehold and not leasehold. In this scenario it’s worth having a local solicitor used to dealing with such properties who can help the conveyancing process. We note that you are buying in Kings Heath so you should seriously consider looking for a Kings Heath conveyancing practitioner and check that they are used to dealing with leasehold houses. As a matter of priority you will need to check the unexpired lease term. As a lessee you will not be at liberty to do whatever you want with the house. The lease comes with conditions such as obtaining the landlord’spermission to carry out alterations. You may also be required to pay a contribution towards the maintenance of the estate where the house is located on an estate. Your solicitor will advise you fully on all the issues.
Last month I purchased a leasehold flat in Kings Heath. Am I liable to pay service charges for periods before my ownership?
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. 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).
I work for a reputable estate agency in Kings Heath where we see a few flat sales derailed due to short leases. I have been given contradictory information from local Kings Heath conveyancing firms. Could you clarify whether the vendor of a flat can commence the lease extension process for the buyer?
Provided that 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 can avoid having to wait 2 years to extend their lease. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment has to be done before, or simultaneously with completion of the disposal of the property.
An alternative approach is 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.
Kings Heath Leasehold Conveyancing - Examples of Questions you should consider before buying
On the whole the cost for major works tend not to be built into the maintenance charges, albeit that there some managing agents in Kings Heath require tenants to pay into a sinking fund and this is used to offset against major repairs or maintenance.
How many of the leaseholders are in arrears for their service charge payments?
How long is the Lease?