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Top Five Questions relating to Leigh leasehold conveyancing

I wish to rent out my leasehold apartment in Leigh. Conveyancing solicitor who did the purchase is retired - so can't ask her. Do I need to ask my freeholder for their consent?

Your lease dictates the relationship between the freeholder and you the flat owner; specifically, it will set out if subletting is not allowed, or permitted but only subject to certain conditions. The rule is that if the lease contains no specific ban or restriction, subletting is permitted. Most leases in Leigh do not contain strict prohibition on subletting – such a clause would adversely affect the market value the property. Instead, there is usually a basic requirement that the owner notifies the freeholder, possibly sending a duplicate of the tenancy agreement.

Having checked my lease I have discovered that there are only Seventy years unexpired on my flat in Leigh. I now wish to get lease extension but my landlord is missing. What options are available to me?

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 mean that your lease can be granted an extra 90 years by the Court. However, you will be required to prove that you or your lawyers have done all that could be expected to locate the lessor. In some cases an enquiry agent should be useful to try and locate and prepare a report to be accepted by the court as proof that the freeholder is indeed missing. It is advisable to get professional help from a property lawyer both on investigating the landlord’s disappearance and the application to the County Court overseeing Leigh.

I am hoping to sign contracts shortly on a garden flat in Leigh. Conveyancing lawyers assured me that they report fully on Monday. What should I be looking out for?

The report on title for your leasehold conveyancing in Leigh should include some of the following:

  • Setting out your rights in relation to common areas in the block.For example, does the lease include a right of way over an accessway or staircase?
  • Whether the lease restricts you from subletting the flat, or having a home office for business
  • Ground rent - how much and when you need to pay, and also know whether this is subject to change
  • Changes to the flat (alterations and additions)
  • The landlord’s rights to access the flat you be made aware that your landlord has rights of access and I know how much notice s/he must provide.
  • Whether the landlord has obligations to ensure rights of quiet enjoyment over your property and do you know what it means in practice?
  • The landlord’s obligations to repair and maintain the building. It is important that you know who is responsible for the repair and maintenance of every part of the building For details of the information to be contained in your report on your leasehold property in Leigh please ask your conveyancer in ahead of your conveyancing in Leigh

  • I have just started marketing my 2 bed flat in Leigh.Conveyancing has not commenced but I have just received a yearly maintenance charge demand – should I leave it to the buyer to sort out?

    It best that you discharge 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 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. This will smooth the conveyancing process.

    Can you provide any advice for leasehold conveyancing in Leigh with the aim of speeding up the sale process?

    • Much of the delay in leasehold conveyancing in Leigh can be avoided where you instruct lawyers the minute you market your property and request that they start to put together the leasehold information which will be required by the purchasers’ solicitors.
    • The majority landlords or managing agents in Leigh charge for providing management packs for a leasehold premises. You or your lawyers should discover the actual amount of the charges. The management information can be applied for as soon as you have a buyer, thus reducing delays. The average time it takes to receive management information is three weeks. It is the most frequent reason for frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Leigh.
  • Some Leigh leases require Licence to Assign from the landlord. If this is the case, you should notify your estate agents to make sure that the purchasers put in hand bank and professional references. The bank reference will need to confirm that the buyers are able to meet the yearly service charge and the actual amount of the service charge should be quoted in the bank’s letter. You will therefore need to provide your estate agents with the actual amount of the service charge so that they can pass this information on to the purchasers or their solicitors.
  • If you are supposed to have a share in the Management Company, you should make sure that you have the original share certificate. Organising a duplicate share certificate is often a time consuming formality and delays many a Leigh conveyancing transaction. Where a new share is needed, do contact the company officers or managing agents (if applicable) for this at the earliest opportunity.
  • You may think that you are aware of the number of years remaining on your lease but it would be advisable verify this via your lawyers. A buyer’s conveyancer will be unlikely to recommend their client to proceed with the purchase of a leasehold property the remaining number of years is below 75 years. It is therefore important at an as soon as possible that you identify whether the lease requires a lease extension. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your home on the market for sale.

  • I bought a 1st floor flat in Leigh, conveyancing was carried out in 2005. Can you work out an approximate cost of a lease extension? Similar flats in Leigh with over 90 years remaining are worth £253,000. The ground rent is £55 invoiced every year. The lease ends on 21st October 2078

    With just 54 years remaining on your lease we estimate the premium for your lease extension to range between £28,500 and £33,000 plus professional fees.

    The suggested premium range that we have given is a general guide to costs for renewing a lease, but we cannot give you the actual costs in the absence of comprehensive investigations. You should not use this information in a Notice of Claim or as an informal offer. 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 based on this information without first getting professional advice.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Leigh