Guaranteed fixed fees for Leasehold Conveyancing in Childs Hill

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Common questions relating to Childs Hill leasehold conveyancing

Having checked my lease I have discovered that there are only Fifty years left on my flat in Childs Hill. I now want to extend my lease but my landlord is can not be found. 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 granted an extra 90 years by the Court. You will be obliged to prove that you or your lawyers have used your best endeavours to locate the freeholder. In some cases an enquiry agent should be useful to try and locate and to produce a report to be used as evidence that the landlord can not be located. It is advisable to get professional help from a conveyancer in relation to investigating the landlord’s disappearance and the application to the County Court overseeing Childs Hill.

I have just started marketing my ground floor flat in Childs Hill.Conveyancing lawyers have not yet been instructed but I have just had a quarterly service charge demand – should I leave it to the buyer to sort out?

The sensible thing to do is pay the invoice 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 managing agents will not acknowledge the buyer until 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 work for a busy estate agency in Childs Hill where we have experienced a few leasehold sales derailed as a result of leases having less than 80 years remaining. I have received inconsistent advice from local Childs Hill conveyancing firms. Can you shed some light as to whether the owner of a flat can instigate the lease extension process for the purchaser on completion of the sale?

As long as the seller has owned the lease for at least 2 years it is possible, to serve a Section 42 notice to commence the lease extension process and assign the benefit of the notice to the purchaser. This means that the buyer need not have to wait 2 years for a lease extension. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment has to be done prior to, or simultaneously with completion of the sale.

An alternative approach is to agree the lease extension with the freeholder 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 purchaser.

Can you provide any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in Childs Hill with the aim of saving time on the sale process?

  • A significant proportion of the frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Childs Hill can be bypassed if you get in touch lawyers as soon as you market your property and request that they start to put together the leasehold documentation needed by the purchasers’ lawyers.
  • Many freeholders or managing agents in Childs Hill charge for providing management packs for a leasehold homes. You or your lawyers should discover the fee that they propose to charge. The management information sought as soon as you have a buyer, thus reducing delays. The typical amount of time it takes to receive management information is three weeks. It is the most usual cause of frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Childs Hill.
  • In the event that you altered the property did you need the Landlord’s approval? Have you, for example laid down wooden flooring? Childs Hill leases often stipulate that internal structural changes or addition of wooden flooring calls for a licence issued by the Landlord approving such alterations. Should you dont have the consents to hand do not contact the landlord without checking with your solicitor first.
  • If you have had any disputes with your freeholder or managing agents it is very important that these are resolved prior to the flat being marketed. The purchasers and their solicitors will be nervous about purchasing a property where there is an ongoing dispute. You may need to swallow your pride and pay any arrears of service charge or resolve the dispute prior to completion of the sale. 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 particulars of the dispute to the purchasers, but it is clearly preferable to present the dispute as historic rather than ongoing.
  • If you have the benefit of shareholding in the freehold, you should make sure that you have the original share document. Obtaining a new share certificate is often a lengthy process and frustrates many a Childs Hill home move. If a reissued share is needed, do contact the company officers or managing agents (where relevant) for this sooner rather than later.

  • After years of negotiations we simply can't agree with our landlord on how much the lease extension should cost for our flat in Childs Hill. Can we issue an application to the Residential Property Tribunal Service?

    Most certainly. We are happy to put you in touch with a Childs Hill conveyancing firm who can help.

    An example of a Lease Extension decision for a Childs Hill residence is Flat A 372 Cricklewood Lane in January 2013. The Tribunal decided that the premium for the extended lease should be £5,750.00 and that the terms of the new lease should be those set out in annex to the decsion This case was in relation to 1 flat.

    What makes a Childs Hill lease defective?

    There is nothing unique about leasehold conveyancing in Childs Hill. All leases is drafted differently and legal mistakes in the legal wording can result in certain provisions are missing. For example, if your lease is missing any of the following, it could be defective:

    • Repairing obligations to or maintain elements of the building
    • Insurance obligations
    • A provision for the recovery of money spent for the benefit of another party.
    • Maintenance charge proportions which don’t add up to the correct percentage

    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. Santander, Norwich and Peterborough 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 does not cover certain provisions they may refuse to grant the mortgage, obliging the buyer to withdraw.