Fixed-fee leasehold conveyancing in Coulsdon:

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Coulsdon leasehold conveyancing: Q and A’s

Having had my offer accepted I require leasehold conveyancing in Coulsdon. Before I set the wheels in motion I require certainty as to the remaining lease term.

Assuming the lease is registered - and 99.9% are in Coulsdon - 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.

Harry (my fiance) and I may need to sub-let our Coulsdon ground floor flat for a while due to a career opportunity. We instructed a Coulsdon conveyancing practice in 2003 but they have closed and we did not think at the time seek any advice as to whether the lease allows us to sublet. How do we find out?

A lease governs relations between the freeholder and you the flat owner; specifically, it will set out if subletting is prohibited, or permitted but only subject to certain caveats. The rule is that if the lease contains no specific ban or restriction, subletting is permitted. The majority of leases in Coulsdon do not prevent strict prohibition on subletting – such a clause would adversely affect the market value the flat. In most cases there is simply a requirement that the owner notifies the freeholder, possibly supplying a copy of the tenancy agreement.

I am looking at a couple of maisonettes in Coulsdon which have about forty five years left on the leases. Should I regard a short lease as a deal breaker?

A lease is a right to use the property for a prescribed time frame. As a lease shortens the saleability of the lease deteriorate and it becomes more expensive to acquire a lease extension. For this reason it is often a good idea to increase the term of the lease. It is often difficulties arise selling premises with a short lease because mortgage companies may be unwilling to lend money on properties of this type. Lease extension can be a protracted process. We advise that you get professional assistance from a conveyancer and surveyor with experience in this field

I work for a reputable estate agency in Coulsdon where we have experienced a number of leasehold sales derailed as a result of short leases. I have received conflicting advice from local Coulsdon conveyancing firms. Could you shed some light as to whether the owner of a flat can commence the lease extension process 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 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 for a lease extension. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment needs to be completed prior to, or at the same time as 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.

I have tried to negotiate informally with with my landlord for a lease extension without any joy. Can a leaseholder apply to the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal? Can you recommend a Coulsdon conveyancing firm to act on my behalf?

if there is a missing landlord or where there is dispute about what the lease extension should cost, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can apply to the LVT to determine the price payable.

An example of a Freehold Enfranchisement matter before the tribunal for a Coulsdon property is 223 Brighton Road in September 2013. The premium payable for the acquisition freehold of the properties should be £10,934 (Ten thousand,nine hundred and thirty four pounds) This case affected 3 flats. The unexpired lease term was 75 years.

What makes a Coulsdon lease unacceptable for security purposes?

There is nothing unique about leasehold conveyancing in Coulsdon. All leases are unique and legal mistakes in the legal wording can result in certain provisions are erroneous. For example, if your lease is missing any of the following, it could be defective:

  • Repairing obligations to or maintain parts 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

You may encounter a problem when selling your property if you have a defective lease as they can affect a potential buyer’s ability to obtain a mortgage. Birmingham Midshires, Barnsley Building Society, and Barclays Direct all have very detailed conveyancing instructions when it comes to what is expected in a lease. If a mortgage lender believes that the lease is problematic they may refuse to grant the mortgage, forcing the purchaser to withdraw.

Other Topics

Lease Extensions in Coulsdon