Frequently asked questions relating to Balham leasehold conveyancing
I am on look out for some leasehold conveyancing in Balham. Before I get started I require certainty as to the number of years remaining on the lease.
If the lease is registered - and most are in Balham - then the leasehold title will always include the short particulars of the lease, namely the date; the term; and the original parties. From a conveyancing perspective such details then enable any prospective buyer and lender to confirm that any lease they are looking at is the one relevant to that title.For any other purpose, such as confirming how long the term was granted for and calculating what is left, then the register should be sufficient on it's own.
I am hoping to put an offer on a small detached house that appears to be perfect, at a great figure which is making it all the more appealing. I have just discovered that the title is leasehold rather than freehold. I am assuming that there are issues purchasing a leasehold house in Balham. Conveyancing solicitors have are about to be appointed. Will my lawyers set out the risks of buying a leasehold house in Balham ?
Most houses in Balham are freehold and not leasehold. In this scenario it’s worth having a local solicitor used to dealing with such properties who can assist with the conveyancing process. We note that you are buying in Balham in which case you should be looking for a Balham conveyancing solicitor and check that they are used to dealing with leasehold houses. As a matter of priority you will need to check the unexpired lease term. As a tenant you will not be entirely free to do whatever you want with the house. The lease comes with conditions such as requiring the landlord’spermission to carry out alterations. It may be necessary to pay a maintenance charge towards the upkeep of the communal areas where the property is located on an estate. Your solicitor will appraise you on the various issues.
Back In 2004, I bought a leasehold flat in Balham. Conveyancing and Alliance & Leicester mortgage organised. A letter has just been received from someone claiming to own the reversionary interest in the property. It included a demand for arrears of ground rent dating back to 1991. The conveyancing solicitor in Balham who acted for me is not around.Do I pay?
The first thing you should do is contact the Land Registry to make sure that the individual purporting to own the freehold is indeed the registered owner of the freehold reversion. There is no need to incur the fees of a Balham conveyancing firm to do this as you can do this on the Land Registry website for £3. You should note that in any event, even if this is the rightful freeholder, under the Limitation Act 1980 the limitation period for recovery of ground rent is six years.
I am employed by a busy estate agent office in Balham where we have witnessed a number of flat sales put at risk due to short leases. I have been given inconsistent advice from local Balham conveyancing solicitors. Can you confirm whether the vendor of a flat can initiate the lease extension process for the purchaser on completion of the sale?
As long as the seller has been the owner 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 proposed purchaser can avoid having to wait 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 extend the lease informally by agreement with the landlord 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.
We expect to complete the sale of our £175000 garden flat in Balham in 5 days. The freeholder has quoted £360 for Certificate of Compliance, building insurance schedule and previous years service charge statements. Is the landlord entitled to charge exorbitant fees for a flat conveyance in Balham?
Balham conveyancing on leasehold apartments normally necessitates the buyer’s solicitor submitting questions for the landlord to address. Although the landlord is under no legal obligation to address these enquiries most will be willing to do so. They may invoice a reasonable administration fee for answering questions or supplying documentation. There is no upper cap for such fees. The average fee for the information that you are referring to is over three hundred pounds, in some cases it exceeds £800. The administration charge invoiced by the landlord must be sent together with a synopsis of rights and obligations in relation to administration fees, otherwise the charge is not strictly payable. Reality however dictates that one has little option but to pay whatever is requested of you if you want to exchange contracts with the buyer.
I am the registered owner of a ground-floor 1960’s flat in Balham. In the absence of agreement between myself and the freeholder, can the Leasehold valuation Tribunal make a decision on the amount payable for the purchase of the freehold?
Where there is a absentee freeholder or if there is disagreement about the premium for a lease extension, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can apply to the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal to arrive at the amount due.
An example of a Lease Extension decision for a Balham property is First Floor Flat 152a Ramsden Road in June 2009. The net result of the tribunals calculation produced a premium payable of £23,975. This case related to 1 flat. The remaining number of years on the lease was 56.67 years.