Fixed-fee leasehold conveyancing in Dartmouth Park:

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Common questions relating to Dartmouth Park leasehold conveyancing

Having checked my lease I have discovered that there are only Fifty years left on my flat in Dartmouth Park. I now wish to extend my lease but my freeholder is absent. What should I do?

If you meet the appropriate requirements, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can submit an application to the County Court for an order to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will enable the lease to be extended by the Court. You will be obliged to demonstrate that you have made all reasonable attempts to track down the landlord. On the whole an enquiry agent should be useful to try and locate and prepare an expert document which can be used as evidence that the freeholder can not be located. It is wise to seek advice from a property lawyer in relation to proving the landlord’s absence and the vesting order request to the County Court overseeing Dartmouth Park.

I am looking at a couple of maisonettes in Dartmouth Park both have approximately 50 years left on the lease term. Will this present a problem?

There are no two ways about it. A leasehold flat in Dartmouth Park is a deteriorating asset as a result of the reducing lease term. The closer the lease gets to zero years unexpired, the more it adversely affects the value of the premises. The majority of purchasers and banks, leases with under eighty years become less and less attractive. On a more positive note, leaseholders can extend their leases by serving a Section 42 Notice. One stipulation is that they must have owned the premises for two years (unlike a Section 13 notice for purchasing the freehold, when leaseholders can participate from day one of ownership). When successful, they will have the right to an extension of 90 years to the current term and ground rent is effectively reduced to zero. Before moving forward with a purchase of a residence with a short lease term remaining you should talk to a solicitor specialising in lease extensions and leasehold enfranchisement. We are are happy to put you in touch with Dartmouth Park conveyancing experts who will explain the options available to you during an initial telephone conversation free of charge. More often than not it is possible to negotiate informally with the freeholder to extend the lease You may find he or she is happy to negotiate informally and willing to consider your offer straight off, without having to involve anyone else. This will save you time and money and it could help you reach a lower price on the lease. You need to ensure that the agreed terms represent good long-term value compared with the standard benefits of the Section 42 Notice and that onerous clauses are not inserted into any redrafting of the lease.

I work for a long established estate agency in Dartmouth Park where we have witnessed a number of leasehold sales derailed due to leases having less than 80 years remaining. I have received inconsistent advice from local Dartmouth Park conveyancing solicitors. Could you shed some light as to whether the owner of a flat can initiate 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 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 needs to be completed before, or simultaneously with completion of the sale.

Alternatively, it may be possible 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.

What are your top tips when it comes to appointing a Dartmouth Park conveyancing practice to carry out our lease extension conveyancing?

If you are instructing a solicitor for lease extension works (regardless if they are a Dartmouth Park conveyancing practice) it is most important that he or she should be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of work. We recommend that you make enquires with several firms including non Dartmouth Park conveyancing practices prior to instructing a firm. If the firm is ALEP accredited then so much the better. Some following of questions might be useful:

  • If the firm is not ALEP accredited then what is the reason?
  • What volume of lease extensions have they carried out in Dartmouth Park in the last year?

  • Our conveyancer has advised that he intends to complete and exchange simultaneously on the disposal of our £175000 garden flat in Dartmouth Park next week. The landlords agents has quoted £300 for Certificate of Compliance, building insurance schedule and previous years service charge statements. Is it legal for a freeholder to charge exorbitant fees for a leasehold conveyance in Dartmouth Park?

    Dartmouth Park conveyancing on leasehold maisonettes nine out of ten times results in fees being raised by freeholders :

    • Addressing pre-exchange questions
    • Where consent is required before sale in Dartmouth Park
    • Copies of the building insurance and schedule
    • Deeds of covenant upon sale
    • Registering of the assignment of the change of lessee after a sale
    Your conveyancer will have no control over the level of the charges for this information but the average costs for the information for Dartmouth Park leasehold property is £350. For Dartmouth Park conveyancing transactions it is customary for the seller to pay for these costs. The landlord or their agents are under no legal obligation to answer such questions most will be willing to do so - albeit often at exorbitant prices where the fees bear little relation to the work involved. Unfortunately there is no law that requires fixed charges for administrative tasks. Neither is there any legal time frame by which they are required to supply the information.

    Having spent years of correspondence we are unable to agree with our landlord on how much the lease extension should cost for our flat in Dartmouth Park. Does the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal have jurisdiction to calculate the appropriate figures?

    Most certainly. We are happy to put you in touch with a Dartmouth Park conveyancing firm who can help.

    An example of a Lease Extension matter before the tribunal for a Dartmouth Park flat is Flat 2 27 Mackeson Road in December 2012. The Tribunal assessed the value of the lease extension premium at £35,435 and rounded the figure to £35,500 This case related to 1 flat. The remaining number of years on the lease was 64.77 years.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Dartmouth Park