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Common questions relating to Barking leasehold conveyancing

Having had my offer accepted I require leasehold conveyancing in Barking. Before diving in I want to be sure as to the unexpired term of the lease.

Assuming the lease is recorded at the land registry - and most are in Barking - then the leasehold title will always include the basic details 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 have just started marketing my garden flat in Barking.Conveyancing solicitors are to be appointed soon but I have just had a half-yearly service charge invoice – what should I do?

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 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. Having a clear account will assist your cause and will leave you no worse off financially.

What are your top tips when it comes to finding a Barking conveyancing firm to deal with our lease extension?

If you are instructing a property lawyer for lease extension works (regardless if they are a Barking conveyancing practice) it is imperative that he or she should be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of work. We advise that you make enquires with two or three firms including non Barking conveyancing practices before you instructing a firm. If the firm is ALEP accredited then that’s a bonus. Some following of questions could be useful:

  • How familiar is the firm with lease extension legislation?
  • What are the legal fees for lease extension work?

  • Can you provide any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in Barking with the aim of speeding up the sale process?

    • Much of the delay in leasehold conveyancing in Barking can be reduced where you instruct lawyers the minute you market your property and ask them to collate the leasehold information needed by the purchasers’ representatives.
    • In the event that you altered the property did you need the Landlord’s consent? Have you, for example installed wooden flooring? Barking leases often stipulate that internal structural alterations or laying down wooden flooring require a licence from the Landlord approving such works. Where you fail to have the consents to hand you should not contact the landlord without checking with your solicitor in advance.
  • A minority of Barking leases require Landlord’s consent to the sale and approval of the buyers. If this applies to your lease, it would be prudent to place the estate agents on notice 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 buyers or their solicitors.
  • If you hold a share in a the Management Company, you should make sure that you hold the original share document. Organising a duplicate share certificate can be a time consuming formality and delays many a Barking conveyancing deal. Where a new share is required, do contact the company director and secretary or managing agents (where applicable) for this as soon as possible.
  • You believe that you know the number of years remaining on your lease but it would be wise to double-check by asking your solicitors. A purchaser's lawyer will not be happy to advise their client to proceed with the purchase of a leasehold property the lease term is under 80 years. In the circumstances it is essential at an as soon as possible that you consider whether the lease for your property needs extending. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your property on the market for sale.

  • I have tried to negotiate informally with with my landlord for a lease extension without success. Can the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal adjudicate on such matters? Can you recommend a Barking conveyancing firm to act on my behalf?

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

    An example of a Lease Extension case for a Barking residence is 240 Strone Road in January 2014. the tribunal held that the price to be paid for the freehold interest was£23,538 of which£13,017 is attributable to the ground floor flat and £10,521 to the first floor flat. This case related to 2 flats. The unexpired lease term was 65.5 years.

    What are the common problems that you witness in leases for Barking properties?

    Leasehold conveyancing in Barking is not unique. All leases are unique and legal mistakes in the legal wording can sometimes mean that certain sections are erroneous. For example, if your lease is missing any of the following, it could be defective:

    • A provision to repair to or maintain elements of the building
    • Insurance obligations
    • 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 will likely cause issues when trying to sell a property as they can affect a potential buyer’s ability to obtain a mortgage. HSBC Bank, Coventry Building Society, and Godiva Mortgages Ltd all have express conveyancing instructions when it comes to what is expected in a lease. Where a lender has been advised by their lawyers that the lease is problematic they may refuse to provide security, obliging the buyer to withdraw.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Barking