Church End leasehold conveyancing: Q and A’s
I have recently realised that I have 68 years remaining on my lease in Church End. I now want to extend my lease but my freeholder is absent. What should I do?
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 for permission to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will mean that your lease can be granted an extra 90 years by the magistrate. You will be obliged to demonstrate that you have made all reasonable attempts to track down the lessor. On the whole an enquiry agent may be useful to conduct investigations and to produce a report to be used as evidence that the landlord is indeed missing. It is wise to seek advice from a property lawyer in relation to investigating the landlord’s disappearance and the application to the County Court covering Church End.
I've found a house that appears to tick a lot of boxes, at a reasonable price which is making it more attractive. I have subsequently found out that it's a leasehold rather than freehold. I would have thought that there are issues buying a house with a leasehold title in Church End. Conveyancing lawyers have are soon to be appointed. Will my lawyers set out the implications of buying a leasehold house in Church End ?
The majority of houses in Church End are freehold and not leasehold. In this scenario it’s worth having a local solicitor who is familiar with the area can help the conveyancing process. We note that you are purchasing in Church End in which case you should be looking for a Church End conveyancing practitioner and be sure that they have experience in transacting on leasehold houses. First 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 for example requiring the freeholder’sconsent to carry out changes to the property. You may also be required to pay a service charge towards the upkeep of the estate where the house is part of an estate. Your lawyer should advise you fully on all the issues.
My wife and I purchased a leasehold flat in Church End. Conveyancing and HSBC Bank mortgage went though with no issue. I have received a letter from someone saying they have taken over the freehold. Attached was a demand for arrears of ground rent dating back to 1991. The conveyancing practitioner in Church End who acted for me is not around.Do I pay?
The first thing you should do is make enquiries of HMLR to make sure that the individual claiming to own the freehold is indeed the registered owner of the freehold reversion. You do not need to incur the fees of a Church End conveyancing solicitor to do this as it can be done on-line for less than a fiver. You should note that in any event, even if this is the rightful freeholder, under the Limitation Act 1980 no more than 6 years of rent can be collected.
I work for a busy estate agent office in Church End where we have experienced a few leasehold sales jeopardised as a result of leases having less than 80 years remaining. I have been given inconsistent advice from local Church End conveyancing solicitors. Please can you confirm whether the seller of a flat can commence the lease extension process for the buyer?
As long as the seller has been the owner 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. The benefit of this is that the buyer need not have to sit tight for 2 years to extend their lease. 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.
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 Church End with the purpose of saving time on the sale process?
- A significant proportion of the delay in leasehold conveyancing in Church End can be reduced if you get in touch lawyers as soon as you market your property and request that they start to collate the leasehold documentation needed by the purchasers’ representatives.
- If you have carried out any alterations to the residence would they have required Landlord’s consent? Have you, for example laid down wooden flooring? Most leases in Church End state that internal structural alterations or addition of wooden flooring calls for a licence from the Landlord consenting to such works. Should you fail to have the consents to hand you should not communicate with the landlord without contacting your lawyer before hand.
I have attempted and failed to negotiate with my landlord for a lease extension without any joy. Can the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal adjudicate on such matters? Can you recommend a Church End conveyancing firm to act on my behalf?
Absolutely. We are happy to put you in touch with a Church End conveyancing firm who can help.
An example of a Lease Extension matter before the tribunal for a Church End property is Ground Floor 110 Station Road in June 2013. The Tribunal found that the premium payable for a lease extension should be £31,665. This case affected 1 flat. The the unexpired term as at the valuation date was 56.65 years.