Questions and Answers: Coombe leasehold conveyancing
I am hoping to put an offer on a small detached house that appears to be perfect, at a great price which is making it all the more appealing. I have subsequently been informed that the title is leasehold rather than freehold. I am assuming that there are issues buying a leasehold house in Coombe. Conveyancing lawyers have not yet been appointed. Will my lawyers set out the risks of buying a leasehold house in Coombe ?
Most houses in Coombe are freehold rather than leasehold. In this scenario it’s worth having a local solicitor used to dealing with such properties who can assist with the conveyancing process. It is clear that you are buying in Coombe in which case you should be shopping around for a Coombe conveyancing solicitor and be sure that they have experience in dealing with leasehold houses. First you will need to check the unexpired lease term. As a leaseholder you will not be at liberty to do whatever you want to the property. The lease comes with conditions for example requiring the landlord’spermission 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 solicitor should advise you fully on all the issues.
Back In 2009, I bought a leasehold flat in Coombe. Conveyancing and Barnsley Building Society mortgage are in place. A letter has just been received from someone claiming to own the reversionary interest in the property. It included a ground rent demand for rent dating back to 1997. The conveyancing solicitor in Coombe who acted for me is not around.What should I do?
First make enquiries of HMLR to make sure that this person is in fact the registered owner of the freehold reversion. It is not necessary to instruct a Coombe conveyancing lawyer to do this as you can do this on the Land Registry website for less than a fiver. You should note that regardless, even if this is the rightful landlord, under the Limitation Act 1980 no more than 6 years of rent can be collected.
I am attracted to a two flats in Coombe both have approximately fifty years left on the leases. Do I need to be concerned?
There are plenty of short leases in Coombe. The lease is a right to use the premises for a prescribed time frame. As the lease gets shorter the marketability of the lease deteriorate and results in it becoming more expensive to extend the lease. For this reason it is generally wise to extend the lease term. It is often difficult to sell a property with a short lease as mortgage lenders less inclined to grant a loan on such properties. Lease enfranchisement can be a protracted process. We recommend you get professional help from a solicitor and surveyor with experience in this area
I've recently bought a leasehold house in Coombe. Am I liable to pay service charges relating to a period prior to completion of my purchase?
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 employed by a long established estate agency in Coombe where we have witnessed a number of leasehold sales put at risk due to leases having less than 80 years remaining. I have been given inconsistent advice from local Coombe conveyancing firms. Please can you confirm whether the vendor of a flat can initiate the lease extension formalities for the buyer?
Provided that 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 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 has to be done prior to, or simultaneously with completion of the sale.
Alternatively, it may be possible 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 have tried to negotiate informally with with my landlord to extend my lease without success. Can a leaseholder apply to the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal? Can you recommend a Coombe conveyancing firm to represent me?
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 it is possible to make an application to the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal to decide the price payable.
An example of a Lease Extension decision for a Coombe residence is Flat D 15 Claremont Gardens in September 2013. TheTribunal determined in accordance with section48 and Schedule13 of the Leasehold Reform,Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 that the premium for the extended lease should be fourteen thousand one hundred and eighty seven pounds (£14,187.00) This case affected 1 flat.