Experts for Leasehold Conveyancing in Cann Hall

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Questions and Answers: Cann Hall leasehold conveyancing

I want to sublet my leasehold apartment in Cann Hall. Conveyancing solicitor who did the purchase is retired - so can't ask him. Is permission from the freeholder required?

Some leases for properties in Cann Hall do contain a provision to say that subletting is only allowed with permission. The landlord is not entitled to unreasonably withhold but, in such cases, they would need to review references. Experience suggests that problems are usually caused by unsatisfactory tenants rather than owner-occupiers and for that reason you can expect the freeholder to take up the references and consider them carefully before granting permission.

I have just started marketing my 2 bed flat in Cann Hall.Conveyancing has not commenced but I have just received a yearly maintenance charge invoice – should I leave it to the buyer to sort out?

Your conveyancing lawyer is likely to suggest that you should clear 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. Having a clear account will assist your cause and will leave you no worse off financially.

I've recently bought a leasehold property in Cann Hall. Am I liable to pay service charges relating to a period prior to completion of my purchase?

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. However, your landlord may still be able to take action to forfeit the lease. It is an essential part 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).

What advice can you give us when it comes to finding a Cann Hall conveyancing firm to carry out our lease extension conveyancing?

When appointing a property lawyer for lease extension works (regardless if they are a Cann Hall conveyancing firm) it is essential that they be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of work. We suggested that you talk with several firms including non Cann Hall conveyancing practices prior to instructing a firm. If the firm is ALEP accredited then that’s a bonus. Some following of questions might be of use:

  • If they are not ALEP accredited then what is the reason?
  • How many lease extensions have they conducted in Cann Hall in the last twenty four months?

  • Can you provide any advice for leasehold conveyancing in Cann Hall with the intention of speeding up the sale process?

    • A significant proportion of the frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Cann Hall can be reduced if you appoint lawyers as soon as you market your property and ask them to put together the leasehold information needed by the purchasers’ solicitors.
    • The majority freeholders or managing agents in Cann Hall charge for supplying management packs for a leasehold property. You or your lawyers should find out the fee that they propose to charge. The management pack can be applied for as soon as you have a buyer, thus reducing delays. The average time it takes to receive management information is three weeks. It is the most usual cause of delay in leasehold conveyancing in Cann Hall.
  • Some Cann Hall leases require Licence to Assign from the landlord. If this applies to your lease, it would be prudent to notify your estate agents to make sure that the purchasers put in hand financial (bank) and professional references. The bank reference will need to confirm that the buyers are financially capable of paying the annual 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 actual amount of the service charge so that they can pass this information on to the buyers or their solicitors.
  • If there is a history of conflict with your freeholder or managing agents it is essential that these are settled prior to the flat being put on the market. The buyers and their solicitors will be reluctant to purchase a flat where there is a current dispute. You may need to swallow your pride and discharge 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 will still have to reveal details of the dispute to the buyers, but it is better to present the dispute as over as opposed to ongoing.
  • You may think that you are aware of the number of years remaining on your lease but you should verify this by asking your conveyancers. A buyer’s lawyer will not be happy to advise their client to proceed with the purchase of a leasehold property the lease term is below 75 years. It is therefore essential at an early stage that you identify whether the lease for your property needs extending. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your property on the market for sale.

  • I have given up negotiating a lease extension in Cann Hall. Can the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal adjudicate on premiums?

    You certainly can. We are happy to put you in touch with a Cann Hall conveyancing firm who can help.

    An example of a Freehold Enfranchisement decision for a Cann Hall property is 36 New Wanstead in August 2010. The Tribunal arrived at a valuation of the premium for the freehold of £22,359. This case related to 2 flats. The unexpired lease term was 73.92 years.