Top Five Questions relating to Barking leasehold conveyancing
I have recently realised that I have 72 years unexpired on my flat in Barking. I now want to extend my lease but my freeholder is absent. What are my options?
If 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 enable the lease to be granted an extra 90 years by the magistrate. However, you will be required to prove that you or your lawyers have done all that could be expected to track down the freeholder. For most situations a specialist may be useful to try and locate and prepare a report to be accepted by the court as evidence that the freeholder can not be located. It is advisable to get professional help from a property lawyer in relation to devolving into the landlord’s disappearance and the vesting order request to the County Court covering Barking.
Looking forward to sign contracts shortly on a basement flat in Barking. Conveyancing lawyers assured me that they are sending me a report on Monday. What should I be looking out for?
The report on title for your leasehold conveyancing in Barking should include some of the following:
- Details of the parties to the lease, for example these could be the leaseholder (you), head lessor, landlord
I’m about to sell my 2 bed flat in Barking.Conveyancing has not commenced but I have just had a half-yearly service charge demand – Do I pay up?
The sensible thing to do is 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 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.
I am a negotiator for a busy estate agency in Barking where we have witnessed a number of leasehold sales derailed as a result of leases having less than 80 years remaining. I have been given inconsistent advice from local Barking conveyancing firms. Could you shed some light as to whether the owner of a flat can instigate the lease extension process 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 start the lease extension process and assign the benefit of the notice to the purchaser. The benefit of this is that the proposed purchaser 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 has to be done prior to, or simultaneously with completion of the sale.
An alternative approach is 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 buyer.
Following years of correspondence we simply can't agree with our landlord on how much the lease extension should cost for our flat in Barking. Does the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal have jurisdiction to calculate the appropriate figures?
Where there is a absentee landlord or if there is disagreement about the premium for a lease extension, under the relevant legislation you can apply to the First-tier Tribunal (Property Chamber) to calculate the amount due.
An example of a Lease Extension matter before the tribunal for a Barking premises 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 was in relation to 2 flats. The remaining number of years on the lease was 65.5 years.
What makes a Barking lease defective?
There is nothing unique about leasehold conveyancing in Barking. Most leases is drafted differently and drafting errors can sometimes mean that certain clauses are missing. The following missing provisions could result in a defective lease:
- A provision to repair to or maintain elements of the property
- 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 problems when trying to sell a property primarily because it impacts on the ability to obtain a mortgage on the property. Santander, Chelsea Building Society, and Nottingham Building Society 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 grant the mortgage, forcing the purchaser to withdraw.