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Sample questions relating to Langley leasehold conveyancing

Frank (my husband) and I may need to sub-let our Langley garden flat temporarily due to a new job. We used a Langley conveyancing practice in 2002 but they have closed and we did not have the foresight to get any advice as to whether the lease permits subletting. How do we find out?

A small minority of properties in Langley do contain a provision to say that subletting is only allowed with permission. The landlord is not entitled to unreasonably withhold but, in such cases, they would need to review references. Experience suggests that problems are usually caused by unsatisfactory tenants rather than owner-occupiers and for that reason you can expect the freeholder to take up the references and consider them carefully before granting consent.

Estate agents have just been given the go-ahead to market my 2 bed flat in Langley.Conveyancing lawyers have not yet been instructed but I have just received a yearly service charge invoice – should I leave it to the buyer to sort out?

It best that you 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 today plan to offer on a house that seems to be perfect, at a reasonable figure which is making it all the more appealing. I have subsequently found out that the title is leasehold rather than freehold. I am assuming that there are issues buying a leasehold house in Langley. Conveyancing solicitors have are about to be instructed. Will they explain the issues?

The majority of houses in Langley are freehold and not leasehold. This is one of the situations where having a local conveyancer who is familiar with the area can help the conveyancing process. it is apparent that you are purchasing in Langley so you should seriously consider shopping around for a Langley conveyancing solicitor and be sure that they have experience in transacting on leasehold houses. First you will need to check the unexpired lease term. Being a lessee you will not be at liberty to do whatever you want to the property. The lease will likely included provisions for example requiring the landlord’spermission to conduct alterations. It may be necessary to pay a maintenance charge towards the upkeep of the estate where the house is part of an estate. Your lawyer will appraise you on the various issues.

My wife and I purchased a leasehold house in Langley. Conveyancing and HSBC Bank mortgage are in place. I have received a letter from someone saying they have taken over the reversionary interest in the property. Attached was a ground rent demand for rent dating back to 1995. The conveyancing practitioner in Langley who previously acted has now retired.What should I do?

First make enquiries of the Land Registry to make sure that the individual claiming to own the freehold is indeed the registered owner of the freehold reversion. It is not necessary to incur the fees of a Langley conveyancing practitioner to do this as you can do this on the Land Registry website for a few pound. You should note that regardless, even if this is the legitimate landlord, under the Limitation Act 1980 no more than 6 years of rent can be collected.

I am attracted to a couple of apartments in Langley both have approximately forty five years remaining on the leases. Will this present a problem?

There is no doubt about it. A leasehold apartment in Langley is a wasting asset as a result of the reducing lease term. The nearer the lease gets to zero years unexpired, the more it adversely affects the value of the property. For most purchasers and banks, leases with under eighty years become less and less marketable. On a more upbeat note, leaseholders can extend their leases by serving a Section 42 Notice. One stipulation is that they must have owned the property 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 premises 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 Langley 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 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.

Having spent months of dialogue we cannot agree with our landlord on how much the lease extension should cost for our flat in Langley. Can we issue an application to the Residential Property Tribunal Service?

Most definitely. We are happy to put you in touch with a Langley conveyancing firm who can help.

An example of a Freehold Enfranchisement case for a Langley property is 164 Nestles Avenue in October 2013. The tribunal agreed with the proposed price of £20,158 for the freehold and determined that that sum is the amount to be paid into court This case affected 2 flats. The the unexpired term as at the valuation date was 69 years.

Other Topics

Lease Extensions in Langley