Guaranteed fixed fees for Leasehold Conveyancing in Chingford

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Examples of recent questions relating to leasehold conveyancing in Chingford

I only have Fifty years left on my lease in Chingford. I now want to extend my lease but my landlord is absent. What should I do?

On the basis that you meet the appropriate requirements, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can apply to the County Court for an order to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will enable the lease to be granted an extra 90 years by the magistrate. 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 may be useful to carry out a search and to produce a report which can be accepted by the court as evidence that the landlord is indeed missing. It is advisable to get professional help from a solicitor in relation to devolving into the landlord’s absence and the vesting order request to the County Court overseeing Chingford.

I've found a house that appears to tick a lot of boxes, at a great figure which is making it more attractive. I have just been informed that it's a leasehold rather than freehold. I would have thought that there are particular concerns buying a house with a leasehold title in Chingford. Conveyancing lawyers have are soon to be instructed. Will they explain the issues?

Most houses in Chingford are freehold and not leasehold. This is one of the situations where having a local conveyancer used to dealing with such properties who can assist with the conveyancing process. We note that you are purchasing in Chingford in which case you should be shopping around for a Chingford conveyancing practitioner and check that they are used to dealing with leasehold houses. As a matter of priority you will need to check the number of years remaining. As a tenant you will not be entirely free to do whatever you want to the property. The lease will likely included provisions such as requiring the landlord’spermission to carry out changes to the property. You may also be required to pay a maintenance charge towards the maintenance of the communal areas where the house is located on an estate. Your conveyancer should advise you fully on all the issues.

Last month I purchased a leasehold house in Chingford. Am I liable to pay service charges relating to a period prior to my ownership?

In a situation where the service charge has already been demanded from the previous owner 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. A critical element 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).

I am a negotiator for a busy estate agent office in Chingford where we see a number of flat sales derailed as a result of short leases. I have received conflicting advice from local Chingford conveyancing firms. Please 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 kick-start the lease extension process and assign the benefit of the notice to the purchaser. The benefit of this is that the proposed purchaser can avoid having to sit tight for 2 years for a lease extension. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment needs to be completed prior to, or simultaneously with completion of the disposal of the property.

Alternatively, it may be possible 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 buyer.

What advice can you give us when it comes to appointing a Chingford conveyancing firm to carry out our lease extension conveyancing?

If you are instructing a property lawyer for lease extension works (regardless if they are a Chingford conveyancing practice) it is most important that he or she should be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of work. We recommend that you speak with two or three firms including non Chingford conveyancing practices before you instructing a firm. If the firm is ALEP accredited then so much the better. Some following of questions might be of use:

  • How familiar is the practice with lease extension legislation?
  • What are the charges for lease extension conveyancing?

  • I have attempted and failed to negotiate with my landlord to extend my lease without success. Can one apply to the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal? Can you recommend a Chingford conveyancing firm to represent me?

    Where there is a missing landlord or where there is disagreement about what the lease extension should cost, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can apply to the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal to decide the premium.

    An example of a Freehold Enfranchisement case for a Chingford residence is 201 & 201a St. Barnabas Road in October 2013. The Tribunal decided that the price to be paid by the Applicants for the freehold interest is £20,071. This case affected 2 flats. The the unexpired term as at the valuation date was 69.26 years.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Chingford