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

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Recently asked questions relating to Belsize Park leasehold conveyancing

I've found a house that appears to meet my requirements, at a reasonable figure which is making it more attractive. I have just found out that the title is leasehold as opposed to freehold. I am assuming that there are particular concerns buying a house with a leasehold title in Belsize Park. Conveyancing lawyers have not yet been instructed. Will they explain the issues?

Most houses in Belsize Park are freehold and not leasehold. In this scenario it’s worth having a local conveyancer used to dealing with such properties who can help the conveyancing process. It is clear that you are purchasing in Belsize Park in which case you should be shopping around for a Belsize Park conveyancing solicitor and check that they have experience in dealing with leasehold houses. As a matter of priority you will need to check the unexpired lease term. As a lessee you will not be at liberty to do whatever you want with the house. The lease will likely included provisions for example requiring the landlord’spermission to conduct changes to the property. You may also be required to pay a service charge towards the maintenance of the estate where the property is located on an estate. Your lawyer will report to you on the legal implications.

I own a leasehold flat in Belsize Park. Conveyancing and Skipton Building Society mortgage organised. A letter has just been received from someone saying they have taken over the freehold. Attached was a demand for arrears of ground rent dating back to 1995. The conveyancing practitioner in Belsize Park who acted for me is not around.Do I pay?

First contact HMLR to make sure that the individual claiming to own the freehold is in fact the registered owner of the freehold reversion. You do not need to incur the fees of a Belsize Park conveyancing practitioner to do this as it can be done on-line for less than a fiver. You should note that regardless, 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 looking at a couple of flats in Belsize Park both have about forty five years unexpired on the leases. Do I need to be concerned?

There is no doubt about it. A leasehold flat in Belsize Park is a deteriorating asset as a result of the reducing lease term. The closer the lease gets to zero years unexpired, the more it adversely affects the marketability of the premises. For most buyers and mortgage companies, leases with under 75 years become less and less marketable. On a more positive note, leaseholders can extend their leases by serving a Section 42 Notice. One stipulation is that they must have owned the premises for two years (unlike a Section 13 notice for purchasing the freehold, when leaseholders can participate from day one of ownership). When successful, they will have the right to an extension of 90 years to the current term and ground rent is effectively reduced to zero. Before moving forward with a purchase of property with a short lease term remaining you should talk to a solicitor specialising in lease extensions and leasehold enfranchisement. We are are happy to put you in touch with Belsize Park conveyancing experts who will explain the options available to you during an initial telephone conversation free of charge. More often than not it is possible to negotiate informally with the freeholder to extend the lease They may agree to a smaller lump sum and an increase in the ground rent, but to shorter extension terms in return. You need to ensure that the agreed terms represent good long-term value compared with the standard benefits of the Section 42 Notice and that onerous clauses are not inserted into any redrafting of the lease.

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

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

  • How experienced is the firm with lease extension legislation?
  • If the firm is not ALEP accredited then what is the reason?

  • Do you have any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in Belsize Park with the intention of speeding up the sale process?

    • A significant proportion of the delay in leasehold conveyancing in Belsize Park can be bypassed where you appoint lawyers the minute your agents start advertising the property and ask them to put together the leasehold documentation needed by the buyers lawyers.
    • Many landlords or managing agents in Belsize Park charge for providing management packs for a leasehold premises. You or your lawyers should enquire as to the fee that they propose to charge. The management information sought on or before finding a buyer, thus reducing delays. The average time it takes to receive management information is three weeks. It is the most usual cause of delay in leasehold conveyancing in Belsize Park.
  • Some Belsize Park leases require Landlord’s consent to the sale and approval of the buyers. If this applies to your lease, you should place the estate agents on notice to make sure that the purchasers obtain financial (bank) and professional references. Any bank reference should make it clear that the buyer is 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 service charge figures so that they can pass this information on to the buyers or their solicitors.
  • If you have the benefit of shareholding in the freehold, you should ensure that you hold the original share document. Arranging a replacement share certificate can be a time consuming process and slows down many a Belsize Park home move. If a reissued share is necessary, you should approach the company officers or managing agents (if relevant) for this at the earliest opportunity.
  • You may think that you are aware of the number of years left on your lease but you should verify this via your conveyancers. A buyer’s conveyancer will be unlikely to recommend their client to where the remaining number of years is under 75 years. In the circumstances it is essential at an early stage that you identify whether the lease term for your property needs extending. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your premises on the market for sale.

  • My wife and I have hit a brick wall in trying to purchase the freehold in Belsize Park. Can the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal adjudicate on premiums?

    Absolutely. We can put you in touch with a Belsize Park conveyancing firm who can help.

    An example of a Lease Extension matter before the tribunal for a Belsize Park property is Raised Ground Floor Flat 20 Fitzjohns Avenue in July 2014. the Tribunal decided that the premiums to be paid for new leases in respect of the Raised Ground Floor Flat and the First Floor Flat were to be calculated as: Raised Ground Floor: £765,175.14 First Floor: £601,617.77 This case related to 2 flats. The unexpired lease term was 16.83 and 16.43.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Belsize Park