Frequently asked questions relating to Lake District leasehold conveyancing
I have recently realised that I have 68 years remaining on my flat in Lake District. I now wish to get lease extension but my landlord is missing. What options are available to me?
On the basis that you meet the appropriate requirements, 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 mean that your lease can be extended by the Court. However, you will be required to prove that you or your lawyers have made all reasonable attempts to find the lessor. On the whole an enquiry agent should be helpful to carry out a search and prepare a report which can be used as proof that the freeholder is indeed missing. It is advisable to get professional help from a conveyancer in relation to devolving into the landlord’s disappearance and the vesting order request to the County Court overseeing Lake District.
I have just started marketing my ground floor flat in Lake District.Conveyancing lawyers have not yet been instructed but I have just received a quarterly maintenance charge invoice – should I leave it to the buyer to sort out?
It best that you clear 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 management companies 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. Having a clear account will assist your cause and will leave you no worse off financially.
I am attracted to a couple of flats in Lake District both have approximately fifty years left on the lease term. should I be concerned?
There are no two ways about it. A leasehold flat in Lake District is a deteriorating asset as a result of the shortening lease. The closer the lease gets to zero years unexpired, the more it reduces the salability of the premises. The majority of buyers and mortgage companies, leases with under 75 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 Lake District conveyancing experts who will explain the options available to you during an initial telephone conversation free of charge. More often than not it is possible to negotiate informally with the freeholder to extend 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 the agreed 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.
Last month I purchased a leasehold property in Lake District. Do I have any liability for service charges for periods before completion of my purchase?
In a situation 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. 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 ensure 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).
Can you provide any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in Lake District from the point of view of expediting the sale process?
- A significant proportion of the delay in leasehold conveyancing in Lake District can be bypassed if you appoint lawyers as soon as you market your property and ask them to collate the leasehold information which will be required by the purchasers’ solicitors.
- Many freeholders or managing agents in Lake District levy fees for supplying management packs for a leasehold homes. You or your lawyers should discover the actual amount of the charges. The management pack can be applied for as soon as you have a buyer, thus reducing delays. The typical amount of time it takes to obtain the necessary information is three weeks. It is the most common cause of delay in leasehold conveyancing in Lake District.
Leasehold Conveyancing in Lake District - Sample of Questions you should consider before Purchasing
The best form of lease arrangement is a share of the freehold. In this situation the lessees enjoy control and notwithstanding that a managing agent is often employed if it is larger than a house conversion, the managing agent employed by the leaseholders.
You should want to find out as much as possible regarding the company managing the block as they can either make living at the property much simpler or problematic. As the owner of a leasehold property you are frequently at the mercy of the managing agents from a financial perspective and when it comes to practical matters such as the tidiness of the common parts. Enquire of prospective neighbours whether they are happy with them. In conclusion, find out the dates that you are obliged pay the maintenance charge to the appropriate party and precisely what it includes.
Are there any major works in the planning that will likely increase the maintenance fees?