Questions and Answers: Church End leasehold conveyancing
Having had my offer accepted I require leasehold conveyancing in Church End. Before diving in I want to be sure as to the number of years remaining on the lease.
If the lease is recorded at the land registry - and most are in Church End - then the leasehold title will always include the short particulars 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.
I have just started marketing my basement flat in Church End.Conveyancing lawyers have not yet been instructed but I have just received a half-yearly maintenance charge invoice – should I leave it to the buyer to sort out?
The sensible thing to do is clear 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 unless 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've recently bought a leasehold house in Church End. Am I liable to pay service charges for periods before completion of my purchase?
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 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 work for a busy estate agency in Church End where we see a number of leasehold sales derailed as a result of short leases. I have received conflicting advice from local Church End conveyancing solicitors. Please can you clarify whether the seller 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. This means that the proposed purchaser can avoid having to sit tight for 2 years to extend their lease. 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 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 purchaser.
I own a a ground floor purpose built flat in Church End. Given that I can not reach agreement with the freeholder, can the Leasehold valuation Tribunal make a decision on the amount payable for a lease extension?
if there is a missing freeholder 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 decide the premium.
An example of a Lease Extension decision for a Church End premises 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 was in relation to 1 flat. The the unexpired residue of the current lease was 56.65 years.
What makes a Church End lease unmortgageable?
Leasehold conveyancing in Church End is not unique. All leases is drafted differently and drafting errors can result in certain clauses are erroneous. The following missing provisions could result in a defective lease:
- A provision to repair to or maintain elements of the premises
- A duty to insure the building
- A provision for the recovery of money spent for the benefit of another party.
- 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 as they can affect a potential buyer’s ability to obtain a mortgage. HSBC Bank, Virgin Money, and TSB all have very detailed requirements when it comes to what is expected in a lease. Where a lender has been advised by their lawyers that the lease does not cover certain provisions they may refuse to grant the mortgage, obliging the buyer to withdraw.