Questions and Answers: Bexley leasehold conveyancing
Looking forward to sign contracts shortly on a ground floor flat in Bexley. Conveyancing lawyers assured me that they report fully next week. Are there areas in the report that I should be focusing on?
The report on title for your leasehold conveyancing in Bexley 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 own a leasehold flat in Bexley. Conveyancing and Norwich and Peterborough Building Society mortgage organised. I have received a letter from someone saying they have taken over the reversionary interest in the property. Attached was a ground rent demand for rent dating back to 1998. The conveyancing practitioner in Bexley who acted for me is not around.Do I pay?
The first thing you should do is make enquiries of the Land Registry to be sure that this person is indeed the registered owner of the freehold reversion. There is no need to incur the fees of a Bexley conveyancing solicitor to do this as you can do this on the Land Registry website for less than a fiver. You should note that in any event, even if this is the rightful landlord, 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 Bexley both have about fifty years remaining on the lease term. Should I regard a short lease as a deal breaker?
There are plenty of short leases in Bexley. The lease is a legal document that entitles you to use the property for a period of time. As the lease gets shorter the marketability of the lease decreases and results in it becoming more expensive to extend the lease. For this reason it is generally wise to increase the term of the lease. It is often difficult to sell a property with a short lease as mortgage lenders less inclined to grant a loan on such properties. Lease extension can be a difficult process. We recommend you seek professional assistance from a conveyancer and surveyor with experience in this area
I work for a reputable estate agency in Bexley where we see a few flat sales jeopardised due to leases having less than 80 years remaining. I have received contradictory information from local Bexley conveyancing solicitors. Please can you clarify whether the owner of a flat can start 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 need not have to sit tight for 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 sale.
Alternatively, it may be possible 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.
Having spent months of correspondence we are unable to agree with our landlord on how much the lease extension should cost for our flat in Bexley. Can we issue an application to the Residential Property Tribunal Service?
if there is a absentee freeholder or where there is dispute about what the lease extension should cost, under the relevant statutes you can apply to the First-tier Tribunal (Property Chamber) to assess the amount due.
An example of a Lease Extension decision for a Bexley property is 103a Footscray Road in January 2014. The tribunal determines that the premium payable for the extended lease should be £34,500 according to the expert witness valuation calculation This case was in relation to 1 flat.
What makes a Bexley lease unacceptable for security purposes?
There is nothing unique about leasehold conveyancing in Bexley. Most leases is drafted differently and legal mistakes in the legal wording can sometimes mean that certain clauses are erroneous. The following missing provisions could result in a defective lease:
- A provision to repair to or maintain elements of the premises
- A duty to insure the building
- 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 can cause issues when trying to sell a property primarily because it impacts on the ability to obtain a mortgage on the property. HSBC Bank, Chelsea Building Society, and Aldermore all have very detailed 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 defective they may refuse to grant the mortgage, forcing the buyer to withdraw.