Bexleyheath leasehold conveyancing: Q and A’s
I am in need of some leasehold conveyancing in Bexleyheath. Before I set the wheels in motion I want to be sure as to the remaining lease term.
If the lease is recorded at the land registry - and almost all are in Bexleyheath - then the leasehold title will always include the short particulars 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 am hoping to sign contracts shortly on a leasehold property in Bexleyheath. Conveyancing lawyers have said that they are sending me a report within the next couple of days. What should I be looking out for?
Your report on title for your leasehold conveyancing in Bexleyheath should include some of the following:
- You should receive a copy of the lease
I've recently bought a leasehold property in Bexleyheath. Do I have any liability for service charges for periods before completion of my purchase?
Where the service charge has already been demanded from the previous lessee and they have not paid you would not usually be personally liable for the arrears. However, your landlord may still be able to take action to forfeit the lease. It is an essential part of leasehold conveyancing for your conveyancer to ensure to have an up to date clear service charge receipt before completion of your purchase. If you have a mortgage this is likely to be a requirement of your lender.
If you purchase part way through an accounting year you may be liable for charges not yet demanded even if they relate to a period prior to your purchase. In such circumstances your conveyancer would normally arrange for the seller to set aside some money to cover their part of the period (usually called a service charge retention).
I work for a long established estate agency in Bexleyheath where we have experienced a number of flat sales derailed as a result of short leases. I have been given inconsistent advice from local Bexleyheath conveyancing firms. Could you clarify whether the seller of a flat can initiate the lease extension formalities for the buyer?
Provided that the seller has owned the lease 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 buyer need not have 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 prior to, or at the same time as completion of the disposal of the property.
Alternatively, it may be possible 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 purchaser.
What advice can you give us when it comes to appointing a Bexleyheath conveyancing practice to carry out our lease extension conveyancing?
When appointing a conveyancer for lease extension works (regardless if they are a Bexleyheath conveyancing firm) it is essential that they be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of work. We suggested that you speak with two or three firms including non Bexleyheath conveyancing practices prior to instructing a firm. If the firm is ALEP accredited then that’s a bonus. Some following of questions could be helpful:
- How familiar is the firm with lease extension legislation?
I am the proprietor of a ground floor flat in Bexleyheath. In the absence of agreement between myself and the freeholder, can the Leasehold valuation Tribunal make a decision on the sum due for a lease extension?
Where there is a missing landlord or where there is dispute about what the lease extension should cost, under the relevant statutes you can apply to the LVT to determine the amount due.
An example of a Lease Extension matter before the tribunal for a Bexleyheath property is Various @ Colombus Square in January 2012. the Tribunal calculated the premiums to be paid for new leases for each of the flats in Mariners Walk to be £3822 and the premium to be paid for the new lease of 2 Knights Court to be £4439. This case affected 13 flats. The the unexpired term as at the valuation date was 76 years.