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Top Five Questions relating to Chiswick leasehold conveyancing

I am hoping to sign contracts shortly on a basement flat in Chiswick. Conveyancing lawyers have said that they report fully next week. What should I be looking out for?

Your report on title for your leasehold conveyancing in Chiswick should include some of the following:

  • Details of the parties to the lease, for example these could be the leaseholder (you), head lessor, freeholder
  • The physical extent of the premises. This will be the apartment itself but may include a loft or basement if applicable.
  • An explanation as to the provision in the lease to pay service charges - with regard to both the building, and the more general rights a leaseholder has
  • Repair and maintenance of the flat
  • Changes to the flat (alterations and additions)
  • I don't know whether the lease allows me to alter or improve anything in the flat - you should know whether it applies to all alterations or just structural alteration, and whether consent is required
  • Responsibility for repairing the window frames For a comprehensive list of information to be contained in your report on your leasehold property in Chiswick please ask your conveyancer in ahead of your conveyancing in Chiswick

  • Back In 2002, I bought a leasehold flat in Chiswick. Conveyancing and Bank of Ireland mortgage went though with no issue. I have received a letter from someone claiming to own the reversionary interest in the property. It included a ground rent demand for rent dating back to 1993. The conveyancing practitioner in Chiswick who previously acted has now retired.What should I do?

    The first thing you should do is contact the Land Registry to be sure that the individual claiming to own the freehold is indeed the registered owner of the freehold reversion. There is no need to instruct a Chiswick conveyancing lawyer to do this as it can be done on-line for £3. Rest assured that in any event, even if this is the rightful freeholder, under the Limitation Act 1980 the limitation period for recovery of ground rent is six years.

    I've recently bought a leasehold flat in Chiswick. 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. 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 am a negotiator for a busy estate agent office in Chiswick where we see a few flat sales put at risk due to short leases. I have received inconsistent advice from local Chiswick conveyancing firms. Could you clarify whether the vendor of a flat can commence the lease extension process for the purchaser on completion of the sale?

    Provided that the seller has been the owner 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 need not have to sit tight for 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 disposal of the property.

    An alternative approach is to extend the lease informally by agreement with the landlord 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.

    Notwithstanding our best efforts, we have been unsuccessful in seeking a lease extension in Chiswick. Can the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal adjudicate on premiums?

    if there is a absentee landlord or where there is dispute about the premium for a lease extension, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can apply to the LVT to make a decision on the amount due.

    An example of a Lease Extension matter before the tribunal for a Chiswick premises is Flat 1 30 Ennismore Avenue in September 2010. the Tribunal adopted and arrived at a premium for the lease extension of £29, 900 This case related to 1 flat. The unexpired term was 68.34 years.

    In relation to leasehold conveyancing in Chiswick what are the most frequent lease problems?

    There is nothing unique about leasehold conveyancing in Chiswick. Most leases are individual and drafting errors can sometimes mean that certain sections are not included. The following missing provisions could result in a defective lease:

    • Repairing obligations to or maintain parts of the premises
    • A duty to insure the building
    • Clauses dealing with recovering service charges for expenditure on the building or common parts.
    • Service charge per centages that don't add up correctly leaving a shortfall

    A defective lease can cause problems when trying to sell a property primarily because it impacts on the ability to obtain a mortgage on the property. Accord Mortgages Ltd, Coventry Building Society, and Nottingham Building Society all have express requirements when it comes to what is expected in a lease. If a mortgage lender believes that the lease is defective they may refuse to provide security, obliging the buyer to withdraw.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Chiswick