Sample questions relating to Chislehurst leasehold conveyancing
Having had my offer accepted I require leasehold conveyancing in Chislehurst. Before diving in I require certainty as to the number of years remaining on the lease.
Assuming the lease is recorded at the land registry - and most are in Chislehurst - then the leasehold title will always include the basic details of the lease, namely the date; the term; and the original parties. From a conveyancing perspective such details then enable any prospective buyer and lender to confirm that any lease they are looking at is the one relevant to that title.For any other purpose, such as confirming how long the term was granted for and calculating what is left, then the register should be sufficient on it's own.
My wife and I may need to let out our Chislehurst 1st floor flat for a while due to taking a sabbatical. We instructed a Chislehurst conveyancing firm in 2003 but they have since shut and we did not think at the time seek any advice as to whether the lease permits subletting. How do we find out?
The lease dictates the relationship between the freeholder and you the leaseholder; in particular, it will set out if subletting is banned, or permitted but only subject to certain caveats. The rule is that if the lease contains no expres ban or restriction, subletting is permitted. The majority of leases in Chislehurst do not prevent subletting altogether – such a provision would adversely affect the market value the flat. Instead, there is usually simply a requirement that the owner notifies the freeholder, possibly sending a duplicate of the tenancy agreement.
I am tempted by the attractive purchase price for a two flats in Chislehurst which have about 50 years left on the leases. Do I need to be concerned?
There are no two ways about it. A leasehold flat in Chislehurst is a deteriorating asset as a result of the reducing lease term. The nearer the lease gets to its expiry date, the more it adversely affects the marketability of the premises. For most purchasers and banks, leases with under eighty years become less and less attractive. 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 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 Chislehurst 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 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 the agreed 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.
Last month I purchased a leasehold flat in Chislehurst. Do I have any liability for service charges for periods before 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. 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 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 work for a reputable estate agency in Chislehurst where we have experienced a number of leasehold sales put at risk due to short leases. I have received inconsistent advice from local Chislehurst conveyancing firms. Could you clarify whether the seller of a flat can start the lease extension formalities 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. 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 needs to be completed prior to, or simultaneously with completion of the sale.
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.
After months of dialogue we simply can't agree with our landlord on how much the lease extension should cost for our flat in Chislehurst. Can we issue an application to the Residential Property Tribunal Service?
in cases where there is a missing freeholder or where there is dispute about the premium for a lease extension, under the relevant legislation it is possible to make an application to the First-tier Tribunal (Property Chamber) to judgment on the amount due.
An example of a Lease Extension decision for a Chislehurst premises is 70 Andace Park Gardens 133-149 Widmore Road in November 2013. Tribunal determined that the premium payable for the lease extension was £10,052 This case was in relation to 1 flat. The the number of years remaining on the existing lease(s) was 72 years.