Experts for Leasehold Conveyancing in Brockley

When it comes to leasehold conveyancing in Brockley, you will need to chose a conveyancing lawyer with leasehold experience. Whether your lender is to be Halifax, Birmingham Midshires or Bradford & Bingley be sure to find a lawyer on their approved list. Feel free to use our search tool

Brockley leasehold conveyancing: Q and A’s

I am intending to let out my leasehold apartment in Brockley. Conveyancing solicitor who did the purchase is retired - so can't ask him. Do I need to ask my freeholder for their consent?

The lease governs relations between the landlord and you the flat owner; in particular, it will say if subletting is not allowed, or permitted but only subject to certain conditions. The rule is that if the lease contains no specific ban or restriction, subletting is permitted. The majority of leases in Brockley do not prevent subletting altogether – such a provision would adversely affect the market value the flat. Instead, there is usually simply a requirement that the owner notifies the freeholder, possibly supplying a copy of the tenancy agreement.

Back In 2002, I bought a leasehold house in Brockley. Conveyancing and Lloyds TSB Bank mortgage are in place. I have received a letter from someone claiming to own the reversionary interest in the property. It included a ground rent demand for rent dating back to 1992. The conveyancing practitioner in Brockley who previously acted has now retired.Any advice?

First make enquiries of the Land Registry to make sure that the individual purporting to own the freehold is indeed the new freeholder. You do not need to instruct a Brockley conveyancing lawyer to do this as it can be done on-line for £3. Rest assured that regardless, even if this is the rightful freeholder, under the Limitation Act 1980 the limitation period for recovery of ground rent is six years.

I am looking at a couple of apartments in Brockley which have about 50 years unexpired on the lease term. Do I need to be concerned?

There are no two ways about it. A leasehold flat in Brockley is a wasting asset as a result of the reducing lease term. The closer the lease gets to its expiry date, the more it reduces the salability of the property. For most purchasers and banks, leases with under 75 years become less and less attractive. 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 premises 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 Brockley conveyancing experts who will explain the options available to you during an initial telephone conversation free of charge. More often than not it is possible to negotiate informally with the freeholder to extend 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 any new 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.

Do you have any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in Brockley from the perspective of saving time on the sale process?

  • Much of the frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Brockley can be avoided if you get in touch lawyers as soon as your agents start marketing the property and request that they start to collate the leasehold documentation which will be required by the purchasers’ representatives.
  • Many freeholders or Management Companies in Brockley levy fees for providing management packs for a leasehold homes. You or your lawyers should enquire as to the fee that they propose to charge. The management pack sought as soon as you have a buyer, thus accelerating the process. The average time it takes to receive management information is three weeks. It is the most frequent reason for delay in leasehold conveyancing in Brockley.
  • If you have carried out any alterations to the premises would they have required Landlord’s consent? Have you, for example laid down wooden flooring? Most leases in Brockley state that internal structural changes or addition of wooden flooring require a licence from the Landlord acquiescing to such changes. Where you fail to have the approvals to hand you should not communicate with the landlord without checking with your lawyer in advance.
  • Some Brockley leases require Landlord’s consent to the sale and approval of the buyers. If this is the case, you should place the estate agents on notice to make sure that the purchasers put in hand financial (bank) and professional references. The bank reference should make it clear that the buyer is able to meet the yearly service charge and the actual amount of the service charge should be quoted in the bank’s letter. You will therefore need to provide your estate agents with the service charge figures so that they can pass this information on to the buyers or their solicitors.
  • You believe that you know the number of years remaining on your lease but it would be advisable verify this by asking your solicitors. A purchaser's lawyer will be unlikely to recommend their client to where the remaining number of years is below 75 years. It is therefore essential at an as soon as possible that you identify whether the lease term for your property needs extending. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your home on the market for sale.

  • My wife and I have hit a brick wall in seeking a lease extension in Brockley. Can the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal adjudicate on premiums?

    in cases where there is a missing landlord or if there is dispute about what the lease extension should cost, under the relevant legislation you can apply to the First-tier Tribunal (Property Chamber) to assess the premium.

    An example of a Lease Extension matter before the tribunal for a Brockley premises is Flat b 14 Kemble Road in May 2014. The Tribunal assessed the value of the premium payable for the lease extension to be £9,761 This case was in relation to 1 flat.

    Are there common problems that you see in leases for Brockley properties?

    Leasehold conveyancing in Brockley is not unique. Most leases are unique and legal mistakes in the legal wording can result in certain provisions are missing. For example, if your lease is missing any of the following, it could be defective:

    • A provision to repair to or maintain elements of the building
    • A duty to insure the building
    • 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 issues when trying to sell a property as they can affect a potential buyer’s ability to obtain a mortgage. Nationwide Building Society, Skipton Building Society, and TSB all have express conveyancing instructions when it comes to what is expected in a lease. Where a lender has been advised by their lawyers that the lease does not cover certain provisions they may refuse to provide security, forcing the purchaser to pull out.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Brockley