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Frequently asked questions relating to Ladywood leasehold conveyancing

I have recently realised that I have 68 years left on my flat in Ladywood. I am keen to extend my lease but my freeholder is absent. What are my options?

On the basis that you qualify, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can apply to the County Court for for permission to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will enable the lease to be lengthened by the Court. However, you will be required to demonstrate that you have done all that could be expected to track down the lessor. In some cases a specialist should be helpful to try and locate and prepare an expert document to be used as proof that the landlord can not be located. It is wise to seek advice from a property lawyer both on investigating the landlord’s disappearance and the vesting order request to the County Court overseeing Ladywood.

I am attracted to a couple of flats in Ladywood both have in the region of 50 years remaining on the lease term. Will this present a problem?

There are plenty of short leases in Ladywood. The lease is a legal document that entitles you to use the premises for a period of time. As a lease gets shorter the saleability of the lease reduces and results in it becoming more expensive to acquire a lease extension. This is why it is generally wise to extend the lease term. Sometimes 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 seek professional help from a conveyancer and surveyor with experience in this field

What advice can you give us when it comes to choosing a Ladywood conveyancing practice to deal with our lease extension?

When appointing a property lawyer for your lease extension (regardless if they are a Ladywood conveyancing firm) it is most important that they be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of work. We recommend that you talk with several firms including non Ladywood 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 useful:

  • If the firm is not ALEP accredited then what is the reason?
  • What are the costs for lease extension work?

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

    • A significant proportion of the delay in leasehold conveyancing in Ladywood can be bypassed where you instruct lawyers as soon as your agents start marketing the property and request that they start to collate the leasehold information which will be required by the buyers lawyers.
    • The majority freeholders or Management Companies in Ladywood charge for providing management packs for a leasehold premises. You or your lawyers should enquire as to the fee that they propose to charge. The management information can be applied for as soon as you have a buyer, thus accelerating the process. The average time it takes to receive management information is three weeks. It is the most frequent reason for delay in leasehold conveyancing in Ladywood.
  • If there is a history of any disputes with your landlord or managing agents it is essential that these are resolved before the property is marketed. The purchasers and their solicitors will be warry about purchasing a property where a dispute is unsettled. You may need to swallow your pride and discharge any arrears of service charge or resolve the dispute prior to completion of the sale. It is therefore preferable to have any dispute settled prior to the contract papers being issued to the buyers’ solicitors. You are still duty bound to disclose particulars of the dispute to the buyers, but it is clearly preferable to present the dispute as over rather than ongoing.
  • If you are supposed to have a share in the Management Company, you should make sure that you are holding the original share document. Arranging a new share certificate is often a lengthy process and slows down many a Ladywood conveyancing deal. If a duplicate share is needed, you should approach the company officers or managing agents (if relevant) for this at the earliest opportunity.
  • You may think that you are aware of the number of years remaining on your lease but you should verify this by asking your conveyancers. A buyer’s lawyer will be unlikely to recommend their client to where the remaining number of years is below 80 years. In the circumstances it is essential at an early stage that you consider whether the lease for your property needs extending. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your home on the market for sale.

  • Completion in due on the sale of our £250000 garden flat in Ladywood next week. The management company has quoted £408 for Certificate of Compliance, insurance certificate and previous years service charge statements. Is it legal for a freeholder to charge exorbitant fees for a leasehold conveyance in Ladywood?

    Ladywood conveyancing on leasehold apartments more often than not necessitates the purchaser’s conveyancer sending enquiries for the landlord to address. Although the landlord is not legally bound to address such questions most will be content to assist. They are at liberty levy a reasonable administration fee for responding to questions or supplying documentation. There is no set fee. The average fee for the paperwork that you are referring to is £350, in some transactions it is above £800. The administration charge levied by the landlord must be sent together with a summary of entitlements and obligations in relation to administration charges, without which the charge is not strictly payable. Reality however dictates that you have no option but to pay whatever is requested of you should you wish to sell the property.

    I invested in buying a leasehold flat in Ladywood, conveyancing was carried out in 2002. Can you let me have an estimate of the premium that my landlord can legally expect in return for granting a renewal of my lease? Similar properties in Ladywood with a long lease are worth £247,000. The ground rent is £65 invoiced every year. The lease ceases on 21st October 2094

    With just 74 years remaining on your lease we estimate the price of your lease extension to be between £10,500 and £12,000 plus costs.

    The suggested premium range above a general guide to costs for extending a lease, but we cannot give you the actual costs without more comprehensive investigations. You should not use this information in tribunal or court proceedings. There may be other concerns that need to be taken into account and clearly you should be as accurate as possible in your negotiations. Please do not take any other action placing reliance on this information before getting professional advice.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Ladywood