Fixed-fee leasehold conveyancing in Bickley:

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Common questions relating to Bickley leasehold conveyancing

Back In 2006, I bought a leasehold house in Bickley. Conveyancing and The Mortgage Works mortgage went though with no issue. 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 1998. The conveyancing solicitor in Bickley who acted for me is not around.What should I do?

The first thing you should do is make enquiries of HMLR to be sure that this person is in fact the registered owner of the freehold reversion. You do not need to instruct a Bickley conveyancing practitioner to do this as it can be done on-line for less than a fiver. You should note that in any event, even if this is the legitimate landlord, under the Limitation Act 1980 the limitation period for recovery of ground rent is six years.

I am attracted to a two flats in Bickley both have approximately fifty years left on the lease term. Will this present a problem?

A lease is a right to use the property for a prescribed time frame. As the lease shortens the value of the lease deteriorate and it becomes more expensive to acquire a lease extension. For this reason it is generally wise to extend the lease term. Sometimes it is difficult to sell a property with a short lease because mortgage lenders may be reluctant to lend money on such properties. Lease enfranchisement can be a protracted process. We advise that you get professional help from a conveyancer and surveyor with experience in this field

I am a negotiator for a busy estate agency in Bickley where we have witnessed a few leasehold sales jeopardised as a result of short leases. I have received inconsistent advice from local Bickley conveyancing solicitors. Could you clarify whether the seller of a flat can start the lease extension formalities for the buyer?

As long as 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. This means that the proposed purchaser need not have to wait 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 simultaneously with 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 buyer.

What are your top tips when it comes to finding a Bickley conveyancing firm to carry out our lease extension conveyancing?

If you are instructing a property lawyer for your lease extension (regardless if they are a Bickley conveyancing firm) it is essential that he or she should be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of conveyancing. We suggested that you speak with two or three firms including non Bickley conveyancing practices before you instructing a firm. If the firm is ALEP accredited then so much the better. Some following of questions might be helpful:

  • How experienced is the practice with lease extension legislation?
  • How many lease extensions have they carried out in Bickley in the last 12 months?

  • I am the leaseholder of a ground-floor 1960’s flat in Bickley. Given that I can not reach agreement with the freeholder, can the Leasehold valuation Tribunal make a decision on the sum payable for a lease extension?

    Most certainly. We are happy to put you in touch with a Bickley conveyancing firm who can help.

    An example of a Lease Extension matter before the tribunal for a Bickley residence is 1 Southlands Court Southlands Road in September 2013. The Leasehold Valuation Tribunal determined that the premium to be paid by the tenant on the grant of a new lease, in accordance with section 56 and Schedule 13 of the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 was £30,541 This case affected 1 flat. The remaining number of years on the lease was 50.57 years.

    What makes a Bickley lease defective?

    Leasehold conveyancing in Bickley is not unique. All leases is drafted differently and drafting errors can result in certain clauses are erroneous. For example, if your lease is missing any of the following, it could be defective:

    • Repairing obligations to or maintain elements of the premises
    • Insurance obligations
    • A provision for the recovery of money spent for the benefit of another party.
    • Service charge per centages that don't add up correctly leaving a shortfall

    A defective lease can cause problems when trying to sell a property as they can affect a potential buyer’s ability to obtain a mortgage. Accord Mortgages Ltd, Skipton Building Society, and Godiva Mortgages Ltd all have very detailed conveyancing instructions when it comes to what is expected in a lease. If a mortgage lender believes that the lease is problematic they may refuse to provide security, obliging the purchaser to pull out.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Bickley