Experts for Leasehold Conveyancing in Bromley Common

When it comes to leasehold conveyancing in Bromley Common, you will need to instruct a conveyancing practitioner with leasehold experience. Whether your mortgage company is to be Lloyds, RBS or NatWest be sure to choose a lawyer on their panel. Find a Bromley Common conveyancing lawyer with our search tool

Examples of recent questions relating to leasehold conveyancing in Bromley Common

My wife and I purchased a leasehold flat in Bromley Common. Conveyancing and Santander mortgage are in place. A letter has just been received from someone claiming to own the reversionary interest in the property. It included a demand for arrears of ground rent dating back to 1992. The conveyancing practitioner in Bromley Common who acted for me is not around.Do I pay?

The first thing you should do is make enquiries of the Land Registry to make sure that the individual purporting to own the freehold is indeed the new freeholder. There is no need to incur the fees of a Bromley Common conveyancing practitioner to do this as you can do this on the Land Registry website for a few pound. Rest assured 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.

Last month I purchased a leasehold property in Bromley Common. Am I liable to pay service charges relating to a period prior to my ownership?

In a situation where the service charge has already been demanded from the previous lessee 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 be sure 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 am a negotiator for a busy estate agency in Bromley Common where we have witnessed a number of leasehold sales derailed as a result of short leases. I have received conflicting advice from local Bromley Common conveyancing solicitors. Can you shed some light as to whether the vendor of a flat can commence the lease extension process for the buyer?

Provided that 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 buyer can avoid having 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 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.

Can you provide any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in Bromley Common from the point of view of speeding up the sale process?

  • Much of the frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Bromley Common can be bypassed where you get in touch lawyers as soon as you market your property and ask them to collate the leasehold documentation needed by the purchasers’ representatives.
  • The majority freeholders or Management Companies in Bromley Common levy fees for supplying management packs for a leasehold property. You or your lawyers should find out 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 obtain the necessary information is three weeks. It is the most usual cause of frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Bromley Common.
  • If you have carried out any alterations to the residence would they have required Landlord’s consent? In particular have you installed wooden flooring? Bromley Common leases often stipulate that internal structural changes or laying down wooden flooring necessitate a licence issued by the Landlord acquiescing to such works. If you fail to have the paperwork to hand you should not contact the landlord without checking with your solicitor before hand.
  • If you have had any disputes with your freeholder or managing agents it is very important that these are settled prior to the flat being put on the market. The purchasers and their solicitors will be nervous about purchasing a property where there is an ongoing dispute. You will have to accept that you will have to 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 details of the dispute to the buyers, but it is better to present the dispute as historic rather than ongoing.
  • You may think that you are aware of the number of years left on your lease but it would be wise to double-check by asking your lawyers. A buyer’s conveyancer will be unlikely to recommend their client to where the remaining number of years is less than 75 years. It is therefore important at an early stage that you consider whether the lease term requires a lease extension. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your premises on the market for sale.

  • Completion in due on the disposal of our £275000 flat in Bromley Common next week. The management company has quoted £348 for Certificate of Compliance, insurance certificate and previous years service charge statements. Is it legal for a freeholder to charge exorbitant fees for a leasehold conveyance in Bromley Common?

    Bromley Common conveyancing on leasehold flats more often than not involves the purchaser’s solicitor sending enquiries for the landlord to address. Although the landlord is under no legal obligation to address these enquiries the majority will be willing to assist. They are entitled levy a reasonable administration fee for responding to questions or supplying documentation. There is no upper cap for such fees. The average costs for the paperwork that you are referring to is £350, in some situations it is above £800. The administration charge invoiced by the landlord must be accompanied by a summary of entitlements and obligations in relation to administration fees, otherwise the charge is technically not due. In reality you have no choice but to pay whatever is requested of you should you wish to complete the sale of your home.

    I have attempted and failed to negotiate with my landlord to extend my lease without any joy. Can the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal adjudicate on such matters? Can you recommend a Bromley Common conveyancing firm to assist?

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

    An example of a Lease Extension decision for a Bromley Common 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 related to 1 flat. The unexpired term was 50.57 years.