Bow leasehold conveyancing: Q and A’s
Expecting to exchange soon on a ground floor flat in Bow. Conveyancing lawyers inform me that they are sending me a report on Monday. What should I be looking out for?
The report on title for your leasehold conveyancing in Bow should include some of the following:
- You should receive a copy of the lease
I've found a house that appears to be perfect, at a reasonable price which is making it all the more appealing. I have just discovered that it's a leasehold rather than freehold. I would have thought that there are issues buying a house with a leasehold title in Bow. Conveyancing advisers have are soon to be instructed. Will my lawyers set out the risks of buying a leasehold house in Bow ?
The majority of houses in Bow are freehold and not leasehold. This is one of the situations where having a local solicitor used to dealing with such properties who can help the conveyancing process. it is apparent that you are buying in Bow so you should seriously consider looking for a Bow conveyancing solicitor and check that they have experience in advising on leasehold houses. As a matter of priority you will need to check the unexpired lease term. As a tenant you will not be at liberty to do whatever you want with the house. The lease will likely included provisions such as requiring the landlord’spermission to conduct alterations. It may be necessary to pay a maintenance charge towards the maintenance of the estate where the property is part of an estate. Your lawyer should report to you on the legal implications.
Back In 2003, I bought a leasehold house in Bow. Conveyancing and Chelsea Building Society mortgage went though with no issue. I have received a letter from someone claiming to own the freehold. It included a demand for arrears of ground rent dating back to 1991. The conveyancing solicitor in Bow who acted for me is not around.Do I pay?
First make enquiries of HMLR to be sure that the individual purporting to own the freehold is indeed the registered owner of the freehold reversion. It is not necessary to instruct a Bow conveyancing lawyer to do this as it can be done on-line for £3. You should note that in any event, even if this is the legitimate landlord, under the Limitation Act 1980 no more than 6 years of rent can be collected.
I've recently bought a leasehold property in Bow. Do I have any liability for service charges for periods before completion of my purchase?
In a situation where the service charge has already been demanded from the previous owner and they have not paid you would not usually be personally liable for the arrears. Strange as it may seem, your landlord may still be able to take action to forfeit the lease. A critical element 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 reputable estate agency in Bow where we see a few flat sales jeopardised due to leases having less than 80 years remaining. I have received inconsistent advice from local Bow conveyancing solicitors. Can you shed some light as to whether the seller of a flat can instigate the lease extension formalities for the buyer?
Provided that the seller has been the owner for at least 2 years it is possible, to serve a Section 42 notice to commence the lease extension process and assign the benefit of the notice to the purchaser. This means that the buyer need not have to wait 2 years for a lease extension. 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 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.
I have had difficulty in seeking a lease extension in Bow. Can this matter be resolved via the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal?
You certainly can. We can put you in touch with a Bow conveyancing firm who can help.
An example of a Freehold Enfranchisement case for a Bow flat is 26 Rhondda Grove in June 2009. The net price payable by the leaseholders as determined by the Tribunal was £3,015.13. This comprised £11,300 premium for the reversion less £8,284.87 costs as ordered by the County Court.