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Questions and Answers: Bromley leasehold conveyancing

I am in need of some leasehold conveyancing in Bromley. Before diving in I want to be sure as to the remaining lease term.

Assuming the lease is recorded at the land registry - and most are in Bromley - 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 want to rent out my leasehold apartment in Bromley. Conveyancing solicitor who did the purchase is retired - so can't ask her. Is permission from the freeholder required?

Notwithstanding that your last Bromley conveyancing solicitor is no longer around you can review your lease to check if you are permitted to let out the apartment. The accepted inference is that if the deeds are silent, subletting is allowed. Quite often there is a prerequisite that you must obtain consent via your landlord or some other party before subletting. The net result is you not allowed to sublet in the absence of prior consent. The consent should not be unreasonably turned down. If your lease does not allow you to sublet you will need to ask your landlord if they are willing to waive this restriction.

Due to complete next month on a leasehold property in Bromley. Conveyancing lawyers have said that they are sending me a report within the next couple of days. Are there areas in the report that I should be focusing on?

Your report on title for your leasehold conveyancing in Bromley should include some of the following:

  • You should be sent a copy of the lease
  • The unexpired lease term You should be advised as what happens when the lease expires, and informed of the importance of the 80 year mark
  • Details of the parties to the lease, for example these could be the leaseholder (you), head lessor, landlord
  • Changes to the flat (alterations and additions)
  • I don't know whether the lease allows me to alter or improve anything in the flat - you should know whether it applies to all alterations or just structural alteration, and whether consent is required
  • The landlord’s rights to access the flat you be made aware that your landlord has rights of access and I know how much notice s/he must provide.
  • Whether the landlord has obligations to ensure rights of quiet enjoyment over your premises and do you know what it means in practice? For a comprehensive list of information to be contained in your report on your leasehold property in Bromley please ask your lawyer in advance of your conveyancing in Bromley

  • I've found a house that appears to tick a lot of boxes, at a great price which is making it all the more appealing. I have subsequently discovered that the title is leasehold rather than freehold. I would have thought that there are issues purchasing a house with a leasehold title in Bromley. Conveyancing solicitors have not yet been instructed. Will they explain the issues?

    The majority of houses in Bromley are freehold rather than leasehold. In this scenario it’s worth having a local solicitor used to dealing with such properties who can help the conveyancing process. it is apparent that you are purchasing in Bromley in which case you should be shopping around for a Bromley conveyancing solicitor and check that they are used to advising on leasehold houses. As a matter of priority you will need to check the number of years remaining. As a tenant you will not be at liberty to do whatever you want with the house. The lease comes with conditions for example obtaining the freeholder’spermission to carry out alterations. It may be necessary to pay a contribution towards the upkeep of the communal areas where the property is part of an estate. Your conveyancer will advise you fully on all the issues.

    Can you provide any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in Bromley with the aim of expediting the sale process?

    • Much of the delay in leasehold conveyancing in Bromley can be reduced where you appoint lawyers as soon as your agents start advertising the property and request that they start to collate the leasehold documentation needed by the purchasers’ lawyers.
    • Many freeholders or Management Companies in Bromley charge for providing management packs for a leasehold property. You or your lawyers should discover the actual amount of the charges. The management information can be applied for on or before finding a buyer, thus reducing delays. The average time it takes to receive management information is three weeks. It is the most frequent cause of delay in leasehold conveyancing in Bromley.
  • If you have had any disputes with your landlord or managing agents it is very important that these are resolved before the property is put on the market. The buyers and their solicitors will be nervous about purchasing a flat where there is an ongoing dispute. You may need to swallow your pride and pay any arrears of service charge or settle the dispute prior to the buyers completing the purchase. It is therefore preferable to have any dispute settled ahead of the contract papers being issued to the buyers’ solicitors. You are still duty bound to disclose particulars of the dispute to the buyers, but it is better to present the dispute as over as opposed to unsettled.
  • If you are supposed to have a share in the freehold, you should make sure that you hold the original share document. Arranging a replacement share certificate is often a time consuming process and slows down many a Bromley home move. Where a duplicate share certificate is necessary, you should approach the company officers or managing agents (if relevant) for this at the earliest opportunity.
  • You may think that you are aware of the number of years left on your lease but it would be wise to verify this by asking your lawyers. A buyer’s lawyer will not be happy to advise their client to where the lease term is below 75 years. It is therefore important at an as soon as possible that you consider whether the lease term for your property needs extending. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your premises on the market for sale.

  • I have attempted and failed to negotiate with my landlord for a lease extension without success. Can one apply to the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal? Can you recommend a Bromley conveyancing firm to represent me?

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

    An example of a Lease Extension decision for a Bromley property is 70 Andace Park Gardens 133-149 Widmore Road in November 2013. Tribunal determined that the premium payable for the lease extension was £10,052 This case affected 1 flat. The unexpired term was 72 years.