Common questions relating to Cheam leasehold conveyancing
My wife and I may need to sub-let our Cheam 1st floor flat for a while due to a career opportunity. We instructed a Cheam conveyancing firm in 2003 but they have since shut and we did not think at the time get any guidance as to whether the lease permits subletting. How do we find out?
A lease dictates relations between the landlord and you the leaseholder; specifically, it will indicate if subletting is not allowed, or permitted but only subject to certain caveats. The accepted inference is that if the lease contains no expres ban or restriction, subletting is permitted. Most leases in Cheam do not prevent an absolute prevention of subletting – such a provision would undoubtedly devalue the property. Instead, there is usually a basic requirement that the owner notifies the freeholder, possibly supplying a copy of the sublease.
My wife and I purchased a leasehold house in Cheam. Conveyancing and National Westminster Bank mortgage are in place. A letter has just been received from someone claiming to own the reversionary interest in the property. It included a ground rent demand for rent dating back to 1992. The conveyancing practitioner in Cheam who previously acted has long since retired.Any advice?
First contact HMLR to be sure that this person is indeed the new freeholder. There is no need to incur the fees of a Cheam conveyancing solicitor to do this as it can be done on-line for a few pound. Rest assured that in any event, even if this is the legitimate freeholder, under the Limitation Act 1980 no more than 6 years of rent can be collected.
I am looking at a two flats in Cheam which have about 50 years remaining on the leases. Should I regard a short lease as a deal breaker?
There are no two ways about it. A leasehold flat in Cheam is a deteriorating asset as a result of the shortening lease. The closer the lease gets to its expiry date, the more it adversely affects the salability of the premises. For most buyers and lenders, leases with less than eighty years become less and less marketable. On a more positive 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 premises 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 Cheam conveyancing experts who will explain the options available to you during an initial telephone conversation free of charge. More often than not it is possible to negotiate informally with the freeholder to extend 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 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.
I've recently bought a leasehold property in Cheam. Do I have any liability for service charges relating to a period prior to my ownership?
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. It is an essential part 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 have tried to negotiate informally with with my landlord to extend my lease without getting anywhere. Can one apply to the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal? Can you recommend a Cheam conveyancing firm to assist?
Most certainly. We can put you in touch with a Cheam conveyancing firm who can help.
An example of a Lease Extension decision for a Cheam flat is 33 The Maisonettes Alberta Avenue in June 2014. the Tribunal decided that the premium payable for the grant of a new lease be the sum of £20,680 (Twenty Thousand six hundred and eighty pounds). This case affected 1 flat. The the unexpired residue of the current lease was 60.43 years.
When it comes to leasehold conveyancing in Cheam what are the most frequent lease defects?
There is nothing unique about leasehold conveyancing in Cheam. All leases are unique and legal mistakes in the legal wording can sometimes mean that certain provisions are missing. For example, if your lease is missing any of the following, it could be defective:
- A provision to repair to or maintain elements of the premises
- 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
A defective lease will likely cause problems when trying to sell a property as they can affect a potential buyer’s ability to obtain a mortgage. Birmingham Midshires, The Royal Bank of Scotland, and Alliance & Leicester all have very detailed conveyancing instructions when it comes to what is expected in a lease. Where a lender has been advised by their lawyers that the lease is problematic they may refuse to provide security, obliging the buyer to pull out.