Blackfriars leasehold conveyancing: Q and A’s
Frank (my husband) and I may need to sub-let our Blackfriars garden flat for a while due to a career opportunity. We instructed a Blackfriars conveyancing practice in 2003 but they have since shut and we did not have the foresight to seek any advice as to whether the lease prohibits the subletting of the flat. How do we find out?
Even though your previous Blackfriars conveyancing solicitor is no longer around you can review your lease to check if you are permitted to let out the premises. The rule is that if the lease is non-specific, subletting is allowed. There may be a precondition that you must obtain permission from your landlord or other appropriate person prior to subletting. The net result is you not allowed to sublet without prior consent. The consent must not not be unreasonably turned down. If the lease prohibits you from letting out the property you will need to ask your landlord for their consent.
I have recently realised that I have Sixty One years left on my flat in Blackfriars. I now want to get lease extension but my freeholder is missing. What are my options?
On the basis that you qualify, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can submit an application to the County Court for for permission to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will enable the lease to be lengthened by the magistrate. You will be obliged to prove that you have made all reasonable attempts to locate the landlord. In some cases an enquiry agent would be helpful to conduct investigations and to produce a report to be accepted by the court as proof that the freeholder is indeed missing. It is advisable to get professional help from a property lawyer in relation to investigating the landlord’s disappearance and the application to the County Court covering Blackfriars.
Looking forward to complete next month on a garden flat in Blackfriars. Conveyancing solicitors assured me that they report fully on Monday. What should I be looking out for?
The report on title for your leasehold conveyancing in Blackfriars should include some of the following:
- How long the lease is You should be advised as what happens when the lease expires, and informed of the importance of the 80 year mark
Estate agents have just been given the go-ahead to market my 2 bed flat in Blackfriars.Conveyancing has not commenced but I have just received a quarterly maintenance charge demand – should I leave it to the buyer to sort out?
It best that you discharge the service charge as normal because all ground rent and service charges will be apportioned on completion, so you will be reimbursed by the buyer for the period running from after the completion date to the next payment date. Most managing agents will not acknowledge the buyer until the service charges have been paid and are up to date so it is important for both buyer and seller for the seller to show that they are up to date. This will smooth the conveyancing process.
I am tempted by the attractive purchase price for a two apartments in Blackfriars both have about forty five years remaining on the leases. Should I regard a short lease as a deal breaker?
There are no two ways about it. A leasehold apartment in Blackfriars is a deteriorating asset as a result of the reducing lease term. The nearer the lease gets to its expiry date, the more it adversely affects the value of the premises. For most purchasers and lenders, 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 a residence 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 Blackfriars conveyancing experts who will explain the options available to you during an initial telephone conversation free of charge. A more straightforward and quicker method of extending would be to contact your landlord directly and sound him out on the prospect of extending the lease You may find he or she is happy to negotiate informally and willing to consider your offer straight off, without having to involve anyone else. This will save you time and money and it could help you reach a lower price on the lease. 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.
I have tried to negotiate informally with with my landlord to extend my lease without any joy. Can the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal decide on such issues? Can you recommend a Blackfriars conveyancing firm to assist?
if there is a absentee freeholder or if there is disagreement about the premium for a lease extension, under the relevant legislation it is possible to make an application to the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal to make a decision on the premium.
An example of a Lease Extension case for a Blackfriars property is Flat 89 Trinity Court Grays Inn Road in February 2013. the Tribunal found that the premium to be paid by the tenant on the grant of a new lease, in accordance with section 56 and Schedule 13 to the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 should be £36,229. This case affected 1 flat. The the number of years remaining on the existing lease(s) was 66.8 years.