Fixed-fee leasehold conveyancing in Dollis Hill:

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Top Five Questions relating to Dollis Hill leasehold conveyancing

I wish to rent out my leasehold apartment in Dollis Hill. Conveyancing solicitor who did the purchase is retired - so can't ask him. Is permission from the freeholder required?

Some leases for properties in Dollis Hill do contain a provision to say that subletting is only allowed with permission. The landlord cannot unreasonably refuse but, in such cases, they would need to review references. Experience suggests that problems are usually caused by unsatisfactory tenants rather than owner-occupiers and for that reason you can expect the freeholder to take up the references and consider them carefully before granting consent.

I only have Seventy years left on my flat in Dollis Hill. I now wish to get lease extension but my landlord is absent. What options are available to me?

If you qualify, 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 mean that your lease can be lengthened by the Court. You will be obliged to prove that you have done all that could be expected to track down the freeholder. In some cases an enquiry agent should be helpful to carry out a search and to produce a report to be used as proof that the freeholder is indeed missing. It is wise to seek advice from a property lawyer in relation to investigating the landlord’s absence and the vesting order request to the County Court overseeing Dollis Hill.

I've recently bought a leasehold property in Dollis Hill. Am I liable to pay service charges relating to a period prior to my ownership?

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 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).

What are your top tips when it comes to choosing a Dollis Hill conveyancing firm to deal with our lease extension?

If you are instructing a conveyancer for lease extension works (regardless if they are a Dollis Hill conveyancing practice) it is most important that they be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of conveyancing. We recommend that you talk with two or three firms including non Dollis Hill conveyancing practices before you instructing a firm. If the firm is ALEP accredited then that’s a bonus. Some following of questions might be of use:

  • How familiar is the practice with lease extension legislation?
  • What volume of lease extensions have they conducted in Dollis Hill in the last year?

  • I am the proprietor of a first floor flat in Dollis Hill. In the absence of agreement between myself and the landlord, can the Leasehold valuation Tribunal make a decision on the amount due for the purchase of the freehold?

    Absolutely. We are happy to put you in touch with a Dollis Hill conveyancing firm who can help.

    An example of a Lease Extension matter before the tribunal for a Dollis Hill premises is 12 Deacon Road in November 2012. the premium to be paid for the grant of the new lease was the sum of £31 ,635.00 (Thirty-One thousand and six hundred and thirty-five Pounds). The matter was then returned to the Willesden County Court for the completion of the grant of the new lease in substitution for the existing lease on payment into court the sum of £31,635.00 less the sum of £2,890.20 assessed costs incurred by the leaseholder. Thus the net sum of £28,744.80 was to be paid into court. This case was in relation to 1 flat. The remaining number of years on the lease was 61.98 years.

    What makes a Dollis Hill lease problematic?

    Leasehold conveyancing in Dollis Hill is not unique. Most leases is drafted differently and drafting errors can result in certain clauses are not included. The following missing provisions could result in a defective lease:

    • A provision to repair to or maintain parts of the property
    • Insurance obligations
    • Clauses dealing with recovering service charges for expenditure on the building or common parts.
    • Maintenance charge proportions which don’t add up to the correct percentage

    A defective lease will likely cause problems when trying to sell a property primarily because it impacts on the ability to obtain a mortgage on the property. Santander, Leeds Building Society, and Godiva Mortgages Ltd all have very detailed conveyancing instructions when it comes to what is expected in a lease. Where a lender has been advised by their lawyers that the lease is defective they may refuse to grant the mortgage, obliging the purchaser to pull out.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Dollis Hill