Fixed-fee leasehold conveyancing in Covent Garden:

While any conveyancing practice can theoretically deal with your leasehold conveyancing in Covent Garden, your mortgage provider may unwilling to work with them if the firm are not on their list of approved solicitors for conveyancing

Covent Garden leasehold conveyancing: Q and A’s

I am on look out for some leasehold conveyancing in Covent Garden. Before diving in I want to be sure as to the unexpired term of the lease.

If the lease is recorded at the land registry - and most are in Covent Garden - 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.

Estate agents have just been given the go-ahead to market my basement apartment in Covent Garden.Conveyancing is yet to be initiated but I have just received a quarterly service charge invoice – Do I pay up?

Your conveyancing lawyer is likely to suggest that you should clear the service charge 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 management companies will not acknowledge the buyer until 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. Having a clear account will assist your cause and will leave you no worse off financially.

I am looking at a couple of maisonettes in Covent Garden both have in the region of forty five years left on the lease term. should I be concerned?

There are plenty of short leases in Covent Garden. The lease is a legal document that entitles you to use the property for a period of time. As the lease shortens the value of the lease deteriorate and it becomes more costly to acquire a lease extension. For this reason it is generally wise to increase the term of the lease. More often than not it is difficulties arise selling premises with a short lease because mortgage lenders less inclined to grant a loan on such properties. Lease enfranchisement can be a difficult process. We recommend you seek professional help from a conveyancer and surveyor with experience in this area

I've recently bought a leasehold flat in Covent Garden. 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. Strange as it may seem, your landlord may still be able to take action to forfeit the lease. A critical element 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).

Do you have any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in Covent Garden with the intention of speeding up the sale process?

  • Much of the delay in leasehold conveyancing in Covent Garden can be avoided where you instruct lawyers as soon as you market your property and ask them to collate the leasehold documentation which will be required by the purchasers’ lawyers.
  • The majority landlords or Management Companies in Covent Garden levy fees for supplying management packs for a leasehold property. You or your lawyers should find out the actual amount of the charges. The management pack can be applied for as soon as you have a buyer, thus accelerating the process. The average time it takes to obtain the necessary information is three weeks. It is the most usual cause of delay in leasehold conveyancing in Covent Garden.
  • If you have carried out any alterations to the residence would they have required Landlord’s permission? In particular have you installed wooden flooring? Most leases in Covent Garden state that internal structural alterations or laying down wooden flooring require a licence issued by the Landlord acquiescing to such alterations. Where you fail to have the consents in place do not contact the landlord without checking with your lawyer in advance.
  • If there is a history of conflict with your freeholder or managing agents it is essential that these are resolved before the property is put on the market. The purchasers and their solicitors will be reluctant to purchase a property where there is an ongoing dispute. You may need to swallow your pride and discharge any arrears of service charge or resolve the dispute prior to completion of the sale. It is therefore preferable to have any dispute settled ahead of the contract papers being issued to the buyers’ solicitors. You will still have to reveal details of the dispute to the purchasers, but it is better to reveal the dispute as over rather than ongoing.
  • If you have the benefit of shareholding in the freehold, you should ensure that you hold the original share document. Arranging a duplicate share certificate is often a time consuming process and frustrates many a Covent Garden conveyancing deal. If a duplicate share certificate is necessary, you should approach the company officers or managing agents (if relevant) for this as soon as possible.

  • After years of negotiations we are unable to agree with our landlord on how much the lease extension should cost for our flat in Covent Garden. Can we issue an application to the Residential Property Tribunal Service?

    Where there is a missing freeholder or where there is dispute about what the lease extension should cost, under the relevant statutes you can apply to the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal to arrive at the premium.

    An example of a Freehold Enfranchisement decision for a Covent Garden premises is 20 Avonwick Road in July 2013. The Tribunal was dealing with an application under Section 26 of the Leasehold Reform Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 for a determination of the freehold value of the property. It was concluded that the price to be paid was Fifteen Thousand Nine Hundred and Seventy (£15,970) divided as to £8,200 for Flat 20 and £7,770 for Flat 20A This case affected 1 flat. The unexpired lease term was 73.26 years.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Covent Garden