Fixed-fee leasehold conveyancing in Leyland:

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Top Five Questions relating to Leyland leasehold conveyancing

There are only 62 years left on my lease in Leyland. I now want to get lease extension but my freeholder is absent. 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 granted an extra 90 years by the magistrate. However, you will be required to demonstrate that you have done all that could be expected to locate the landlord. On the whole an enquiry agent would be useful to conduct investigations and prepare an expert document to be accepted by the court as evidence that the freeholder can not be located. It is advisable to get professional help from a conveyancer both on proving the landlord’s absence and the application to the County Court overseeing Leyland.

I own a leasehold house in Leyland. Conveyancing and Halifax mortgage organised. A letter has just been received from someone saying they have taken over the reversionary interest in the property. It included a demand for arrears of ground rent dating back to 1993. The conveyancing practitioner in Leyland who acted for me is not around.What should I do?

First make enquiries of the Land Registry to be sure that this person is indeed the registered owner of the freehold reversion. You do not need to instruct a Leyland conveyancing lawyer to do this as you can do this on the Land Registry website for less than a fiver. Rest assured that regardless, even if this is the rightful freeholder, under the Limitation Act 1980 no more than 6 years of rent can be collected.

I am looking at a two flats in Leyland both have approximately fifty years remaining on the leases. Do I need to be concerned?

There is no doubt about it. A leasehold apartment in Leyland is a wasting asset as a result of the reducing lease term. The closer the lease gets to zero years unexpired, the more it reduces the value of the premises. For most purchasers and banks, leases with less than 75 years become less and less marketable. 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 property 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 Leyland 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 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.

I am a negotiator for a busy estate agent office in Leyland where we see a number of leasehold sales put at risk due to short leases. I have been given inconsistent advice from local Leyland conveyancing firms. Can you shed some light as to whether the seller 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 commence the lease extension process and assign the benefit of the notice to the purchaser. The benefit of this is that the buyer need not have to sit tight for 2 years to extend their lease. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment has to be done before, or simultaneously with completion of the sale.

An alternative approach is to agree the lease extension with the freeholder 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 purchaser.

What are the common deficiencies that you come across in leases for Leyland properties?

Leasehold conveyancing in Leyland is not unique. Most leases is drafted differently and drafting errors can result in certain provisions are wrong. For example, if your lease is missing any of the following, it could be defective:

  • Repairing obligations to or maintain parts of the property
  • A duty to insure the building
  • A provision for the recovery of money spent for the benefit of another party.
  • Maintenance charge proportions which don’t add up to the correct percentage

A defective lease can cause problems when trying to sell a property as they can affect a potential buyer’s ability to obtain a mortgage. National Westminster Bank, The Mortgage Works, and Alliance & Leicester all have very detailed requirements when it comes to what is expected in a lease. Where a lender has been advised by their lawyers that the lease is defective they may refuse to provide security, obliging the buyer to pull out.

I invested in buying a leasehold flat in Leyland, conveyancing was carried out in 2001. Can you work out an approximate cost of a lease extension? Corresponding flats in Leyland with an extended lease are worth £257,000. The average or mid-range amount of ground rent is £50 charged once a year. The lease ends on 21st October 2102

With 80 years left to run we estimate the price of your lease extension to range between £9,500 and £11,000 as well as costs.

The figure above a general guide to costs for extending a lease, but we cannot give you a more accurate figure in the absence of comprehensive due diligence. You should not use the figures in a Notice of Claim or as an informal offer. There may be other concerns that need to be considered and you obviously should be as accurate as possible in your negotiations. You should not move forward based on this information before getting professional advice.

Other Topics

Lease Extensions in Leyland