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Recently asked questions relating to Canonbury leasehold conveyancing

Having checked my lease I have discovered that there are only 62 years unexpired on my lease in Canonbury. I now want to extend my lease but my freeholder is missing. What options are available to me?

On the basis that you qualify, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can submit an application to the County Court for an order to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will mean that your lease can be lengthened by the magistrate. You will be obliged to prove that you or your lawyers have used your best endeavours to locate the lessor. In some cases an enquiry agent should be useful to try and locate and prepare a report to be used as proof that the freeholder is indeed missing. It is advisable to get professional help from a property lawyer in relation to devolving into the landlord’s disappearance and the application to the County Court overseeing Canonbury.

I've found a house that appears to tick a lot of boxes, at a great figure which is making it all the more appealing. I have just been informed that it's a leasehold as opposed to freehold. I would have thought that there are issues buying a leasehold house in Canonbury. Conveyancing lawyers have are soon to be instructed. Will my lawyers set out the implications of buying a leasehold house in Canonbury ?

Most houses in Canonbury are freehold rather than leasehold. This is one of the situations where having a local conveyancer used to dealing with such properties who can help the conveyancing process. It is clear that you are buying in Canonbury so you should seriously consider shopping around for a Canonbury conveyancing solicitor and check that they have experience in advising on leasehold houses. As a matter of priority you will need to check the number of years remaining. Being a tenant you will not be entirely free to do whatever you want to the property. The lease comes with conditions for example requiring the landlord’spermission to carry out alterations. It may be necessary to pay a maintenance charge towards the upkeep of the estate where the property is part of an estate. Your conveyancer should appraise you on the various issues.

I am tempted by the attractive purchase price for a two apartments in Canonbury which have about forty five years unexpired on the lease term. Will this present a problem?

There is no doubt about it. A leasehold apartment in Canonbury is a wasting 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. For most purchasers and mortgage companies, leases with under 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 a residence 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 Canonbury 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 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.

All being well we will complete our sale of a £350000 garden flat in Canonbury in just under a week. The managing agents has quoted £360 for Landlord’s certificate, building insurance schedule and previous years statements of service charge. Is it legal for a freeholder to charge an administration fee for a flat conveyance in Canonbury?

Canonbury conveyancing on leasehold flats more often than not requires the buyer’s solicitor sending enquiries for the landlord to answer. Although the landlord is under no legal obligation to answer these enquiries most will be willing to assist. They are at liberty charge a reasonable administration fee for answering questions or supplying documentation. There is no upper cap for such fees. The average fee for the paperwork that you are referring to is over three hundred pounds, in some situations it is in excess of £800. The administration charge required by the landlord must be accompanied by a summary of rights and obligations in relation to administration fees, otherwise the invoice is not strictly payable. In reality you have no option but to pay whatever is demanded should you wish to exchange contracts with the buyer.

I am the registered owner of a basement flat in Canonbury. Given that I can not reach agreement with the freeholder, can the Leasehold valuation Tribunal determine the premium payable for the purchase of the freehold?

if there is a missing landlord or if there is dispute about what the lease extension should cost, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can apply to the LVT to judgment on the amount due.

An example of a Lease Extension decision for a Canonbury premises is 5C Stoke Newington Road in April 2010. the Tribunal therefore concludes that the premium to be paid for the extended lease is £700.00 This case affected 1 flat. The the unexpired term as at the valuation date was 80.5 years.

What makes a Canonbury lease unmortgageable?

There is nothing unique about leasehold conveyancing in Canonbury. Most leases is drafted differently and legal mistakes in the legal wording can sometimes mean that certain provisions are wrong. The following missing provisions could result in a defective lease:

  • Repairing obligations to or maintain parts of the building
  • Insurance obligations
  • Clauses dealing with recovering service charges for expenditure on the building or common parts.
  • Maintenance charge proportions which don’t add up to the correct percentage

You will have difficulties when selling your property if you have a defective lease primarily because it impacts on the ability to obtain a mortgage on the property. Birmingham Midshires, Leeds Building Society, and Bank of Ireland all have very detailed requirements when it comes to what is expected in a lease. Where a lender has been advised by their lawyers that the lease is defective they may refuse to grant the mortgage, forcing the purchaser to withdraw.

Other Topics

Lease Extensions in Canonbury