Leasehold Conveyancing in Cambridge Heath - Get a Quote from the leasehold experts approved by your lender

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Frequently asked questions relating to Cambridge Heath leasehold conveyancing

My wife and I may need to let out our Cambridge Heath basement flat temporarily due to taking a sabbatical. We instructed a Cambridge Heath conveyancing firm in 2003 but they have closed and we did not have the foresight to get any advice as to whether the lease prohibits the subletting of the flat. How do we find out?

The lease governs relations between the landlord and you the leaseholder; in particular, it will say if subletting is banned, or permitted but only subject to certain conditions. The accepted inference is that if the lease contains no specific ban or restriction, subletting is permitted. Most leases in Cambridge Heath do not contain strict prohibition on subletting – such a clause would undoubtedly devalue the flat. In most cases there is a basic requirement that the owner notifies the freeholder, possibly supplying a copy of the sublease.

I have just appointed agents to market my 2 bed apartment in Cambridge Heath.Conveyancing lawyers have not yet been instructed but I have just had a yearly maintenance charge invoice – what should I do?

The sensible thing to do is 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 management companies will not acknowledge the buyer unless 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 attracted to a two flats in Cambridge Heath both have approximately 50 years remaining on the lease term. should I be concerned?

There are no two ways about it. A leasehold flat in Cambridge Heath is a deteriorating asset as a result of the shortening lease. The nearer the lease gets to its expiry date, the more it adversely affects the value of the premises. The majority of buyers and lenders, leases with less than 75 years become less and less attractive. On a more upbeat 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 property 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 Cambridge Heath 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 They may agree to a smaller lump sum and an increase in the ground rent, but to shorter extension terms in return. 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.

Do you have any advice for leasehold conveyancing in Cambridge Heath from the perspective of speeding up the sale process?

  • Much of the frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Cambridge Heath can be bypassed if you get in touch lawyers as soon as your agents start marketing the property and ask them to collate the leasehold information needed by the purchasers’ solicitors.
  • The majority freeholders or managing agents in Cambridge Heath charge for providing management packs for a leasehold property. You or your lawyers should enquire as to the fee that they propose to charge. The management information sought on or before finding a buyer, thus accelerating the process. The average time it takes to receive management information is three weeks. It is the most usual reason for delay in leasehold conveyancing in Cambridge Heath.
  • A minority of Cambridge Heath leases require Licence to Assign from the landlord. If this applies to your lease, it would be prudent to place the estate agents on notice to make sure that the purchasers obtain financial (bank) and professional references. Any 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 purchasers or their lawyers.
  • If you hold a share in a the Management Company, you should ensure that you hold the original share document. Arranging a new share certificate can be a time consuming formality and slows down many a Cambridge Heath home move. Where a reissued share is required, do contact 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 advisable verify this via your conveyancers. A purchaser's conveyancer will be unlikely to recommend their client to where the remaining number of years is less than 75 years. In the circumstances it is important at an as soon as possible that you consider whether the lease 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 any joy. Can the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal adjudicate on such issues? Can you recommend a Cambridge Heath conveyancing firm to help?

    in cases where there is a absentee landlord or where there is dispute about the premium for a lease extension, under the relevant legislation you can apply to the LVT to judgment on the price payable.

    An example of a Freehold Enfranchisement matter before the tribunal for a Cambridge Heath property 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.

    Are there frequently found deficiencies that you encounter in leases for Cambridge Heath properties?

    There is nothing unique about leasehold conveyancing in Cambridge Heath. All leases are individual and drafting errors can result in certain clauses are not included. The following missing provisions could result in a defective lease:

    • A provision to repair to or maintain parts of the premises
    • Insurance obligations
    • Clauses dealing with recovering service charges for expenditure on the building or common parts.
    • 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 primarily because it impacts on the ability to obtain a mortgage on the property. Accord Mortgages Ltd, Barnsley Building Society, and Barclays Direct all have very detailed conveyancing instructions when it comes to what is expected in a lease. If a mortgage lender believes that the lease is problematic they may refuse to grant the mortgage, obliging the purchaser to withdraw.