Leasehold Conveyancing in Barnet - Get a Quote from the leasehold experts approved by your lender

Any conveyancing practice can theoretically handle your leasehold conveyancing in Barnet, your mortgage provider may unwilling to work with them if the firm are not on their list of approved solicitors for conveyancing

Common questions relating to Barnet leasehold conveyancing

Having had my offer accepted I require leasehold conveyancing in Barnet. Before I get started I would like to find out the number of years remaining on the lease.

If the lease is recorded at the land registry - and 99.9% are in Barnet - 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.

There are only Sixty One years left on my flat in Barnet. I am keen to extend my lease but my landlord is missing. What are my options?

If you meet the appropriate requirements, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can submit an application to the County Court for an order to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will mean that your lease can be granted an extra 90 years by the Court. You will be obliged to prove that you have used your best endeavours to track down the landlord. On the whole an enquiry agent should 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 property lawyer both on devolving into the landlord’s disappearance and the vesting order request to the County Court overseeing Barnet.

I own a leasehold flat in Barnet. Conveyancing and Aldermore mortgage are in place. I have received a letter from someone saying they have taken over the reversionary interest in the property. Attached was a demand for arrears of ground rent dating back to 1998. The conveyancing solicitor in Barnet who acted for me is not around.Any advice?

First make enquiries of the Land Registry to be sure that the individual claiming to own the freehold is indeed the registered owner of the freehold reversion. You do not need to incur the fees of a Barnet conveyancing practitioner to do this as it can be done on-line for a few pound. You should note that regardless, even if this is the rightful landlord, under the Limitation Act 1980 no more than 6 years of rent can be collected.

I work for a busy estate agent office in Barnet where we have experienced a number of flat sales put at risk due to leases having less than 80 years remaining. I have received inconsistent advice from local Barnet conveyancing solicitors. Could you clarify whether the seller of a flat can initiate the lease extension formalities for the purchaser on completion of the sale?

Provided that the seller has been the owner for at least 2 years it is possible, to serve a Section 42 notice to kick-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 for a lease extension. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment has to be done before, or at the same time as 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 buyer.

Can you provide any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in Barnet from the perspective of speeding up the sale process?

  • A significant proportion of the frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Barnet can be bypassed where you get in touch lawyers the minute you market your property and ask them to put together the leasehold documentation which will be required by the buyers lawyers.
  • The majority landlords or managing agents in Barnet charge for providing management packs for a leasehold property. You or your lawyers should enquire as to the actual amount of the charges. The management information can be applied for as soon as you have a buyer, thus accelerating the process. The typical amount of time it takes to obtain the necessary information is three weeks. It is the most common cause of delay in leasehold conveyancing in Barnet.
  • Some Barnet leases require Landlord’s consent to the sale and approval of the buyers. If this is the case, it would be prudent to notify your estate agents to make sure that the purchasers obtain bank and professional references. The bank reference should make it clear that the buyer is financially capable of paying the annual 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 service charge figures so that they can pass this information on to the buyers or their lawyers.
  • If there is a history of any disputes with your freeholder or managing agents it is very important that these are resolved prior to the flat being put on the market. The purchasers and their solicitors will be warry about purchasing a flat where a dispute is ongoing. You may need to swallow your pride and discharge any arrears of service charge or settle the dispute prior to the buyers completing the purchase. It is therefore preferable to have any dispute settled ahead of the contract papers being issued to the buyers’ solicitors. You are still duty bound to disclose particulars of the dispute to the buyers, but it is better to present the dispute as historic rather than unsettled.
  • If you have the benefit of shareholding in the Management Company, you should ensure that you have the original share document. Obtaining a replacement share certificate is often a time consuming formality and delays many a Barnet conveyancing deal. Where a duplicate share certificate is required, do contact the company officers or managing agents (where applicable) for this as soon as possible.

  • I am the registered owner of a ground floor flat in Barnet. Given that I can not reach agreement with the freeholder, can the Leasehold valuation Tribunal determine the sum due for a lease extension?

    You certainly can. We can put you in touch with a Barnet conveyancing firm who can help.

    An example of a Lease Extension matter before the tribunal for a Barnet property is Flat 2 2 Netherfield Road in April 2010. The Tribunale held that premium payable for a 90 year extension to the existing Lease should be £7,705. This case was in relation to 1 flat. The unexpired term was 76 years.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Barnet