Recently asked questions relating to Kings Norton leasehold conveyancing
I have just started marketing my basement flat in Kings Norton.Conveyancing has not commenced but I have just had a quarterly service charge invoice – should I leave it to the buyer to sort out?
The sensible thing to do is discharge 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've found a house that seems to tick a lot of boxes, at a great figure which is making it more attractive. I have since been informed that it's a leasehold as opposed to freehold. I am assuming that there are issues buying a leasehold house in Kings Norton. Conveyancing lawyers have are soon to be appointed. Will my lawyers set out the implications of buying a leasehold house in Kings Norton ?
Most houses in Kings Norton are freehold and not leasehold. In this scenario it’s worth having a local conveyancer who is familiar with the area can help the conveyancing process. It is clear that you are buying in Kings Norton so you should seriously consider looking for a Kings Norton conveyancing solicitor and be sure that they are used to transacting on leasehold houses. First you will need to check the unexpired lease term. As a leaseholder you will not be at liberty to do whatever you want with the house. The lease comes with conditions such as requiring the landlord’sconsent to carry out changes to the property. It may be necessary to pay a service charge towards the upkeep of the estate where the property is part of an estate. Your conveyancer should report to you on the legal implications.
I am looking at a two flats in Kings Norton which have about 50 years left on the lease term. Should I regard a short lease as a deal breaker?
There are no two ways about it. A leasehold apartment in Kings Norton is a deteriorating asset as a result of the reducing lease term. The nearer the lease gets to zero years unexpired, the more it reduces the salability of the property. For most buyers and banks, leases with less than eighty years become less and less attractive. On a more positive note, leaseholders can extend their leases by serving a Section 42 Notice. One stipulation is that they must have owned the premises for two years (unlike a Section 13 notice for purchasing the freehold, when leaseholders can participate from day one of ownership). When successful, they will have the right to an extension of 90 years to the current term and ground rent is effectively reduced to zero. Before moving forward with a purchase of a residence with a short lease term remaining you should talk to a solicitor specialising in lease extensions and leasehold enfranchisement. We are are happy to put you in touch with Kings Norton conveyancing experts who will explain the options available to you during an initial telephone conversation free of charge. A more straightforward and quicker method of extending would be to contact your landlord directly and sound him out on the prospect of extending the lease You may find he or she is happy to negotiate informally and willing to consider your offer straight off, without having to involve anyone else. This will save you time and money and it could help you reach a lower price on the lease. You need to ensure that any new terms represent good long-term value compared with the standard benefits of the Section 42 Notice and that onerous clauses are not inserted into any redrafting of the lease.
I am employed by a reputable estate agency in Kings Norton where we have witnessed a number of leasehold sales put at risk as a result of short leases. I have been given conflicting advice from local Kings Norton conveyancing solicitors. Could you shed some light as to whether the vendor of a flat can start the lease extension formalities for the purchaser on completion of the sale?
Provided that the seller has owned the lease 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. This means that the proposed purchaser need not have to sit tight for 2 years for a lease extension. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment needs to be completed prior to, or simultaneously with completion of the disposal of the property.
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.
What advice can you give us when it comes to choosing a Kings Norton conveyancing practice to carry out our lease extension conveyancing?
If you are instructing a property lawyer for lease extension works (regardless if they are a Kings Norton conveyancing firm) it is imperative that he or she should be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of work. We recommend that you speak with several firms including non Kings Norton conveyancing practices before you instructing a firm. Where the conveyancing practice is ALEP accredited then that’s a bonus. Some following of questions might be useful:
- How experienced is the practice with lease extension legislation?
Kings Norton Conveyancing for Leasehold Flats - Examples of Queries Prior to buying
Does the lease have onerous restrictions?
Can you inform me if there are any major works in the near future that will increase the maintenance charges?
The prefered form of lease structure is a share of the freehold. In this scenario the lessees have being in charge if their destiny and even though a managing agent is usually retained where it is bigger than a house conversion, the managing agent employed by the leaseholders.