Top Five Questions relating to Abbey Wood leasehold conveyancing
I only have Sixty One years left on my flat in Abbey Wood. I now wish to extend my lease but my landlord is can not be found. 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 lengthened by the magistrate. However, you will be required to demonstrate that you or your lawyers have made all reasonable attempts to find the lessor. For most situations a specialist may be useful to conduct investigations and to produce a report to be used as evidence that the freeholder can not be located. It is wise to seek advice from a property lawyer in relation to investigating the landlord’s disappearance and the vesting order request to the County Court covering Abbey Wood.
I have just started marketing my garden flat in Abbey Wood.Conveyancing is yet to be initiated but I have just received a yearly maintenance charge invoice – Do I pay up?
The sensible thing to do is 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 management companies will not acknowledge the buyer unless 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've recently bought a leasehold property in Abbey Wood. 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. A critical element of leasehold conveyancing for your conveyancer to be sure 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).
I work for a long established estate agency in Abbey Wood where we have witnessed a few flat sales jeopardised as a result of leases having less than 80 years remaining. I have been given conflicting advice from local Abbey Wood conveyancing solicitors. Could you shed some light as to whether the owner of a flat can initiate the lease extension process for the buyer?
As long as 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. This means that the buyer can avoid having to sit tight for 2 years to extend their lease. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment needs to be completed prior to, or at the same time as completion of the disposal of the property.
Alternatively, it may be possible 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.
Our conveyancer has advised that he intends to complete and exchange simultaneously on the sale of our £275000 garden flat in Abbey Wood next Thursday . The landlords agents has quoted £324 for Certificate of Compliance, insurance certificate and previous years service charge statements. Is the landlord entitled to charge exorbitant fees for a leasehold conveyance in Abbey Wood?
Abbey Wood conveyancing on leasehold maisonettes usually necessitates administration charges raised by landlords agents :
- Addressing pre-contract enquiries
- Where consent is required before sale in Abbey Wood
- Supplying insurance information
- Deeds of covenant upon sale
- Registering of the assignment of the change of lessee after a sale
Notwithstanding our best endeavours, we have been unsuccessful in trying to purchase the freehold in Abbey Wood. Can the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal adjudicate on premiums?
Where there is a missing freeholder or where there is disagreement about the premium for a lease extension, under the relevant legislation it is possible to make an application to the First-tier Tribunal (Property Chamber) to arrive at the price payable.
An example of a Lease Extension case for a Abbey Wood property is Various @ Colombus Square in January 2012. the Tribunal calculated the premiums to be paid for new leases for each of the flats in Mariners Walk to be £3822 and the premium to be paid for the new lease of 2 Knights Court to be £4439. This case was in relation to 13 flats. The the number of years remaining on the existing lease(s) was 76 years.