Recently asked questions relating to Ealing leasehold conveyancing
I only have 72 years left on my flat in Ealing. I am keen to get lease extension but my landlord is missing. What are my options?
If you qualify, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can apply to the County Court for for permission to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will mean that your lease can be extended by the Court. You will be obliged to prove that you or your lawyers have used your best endeavours to track down the lessor. In some cases an enquiry agent may be useful to conduct investigations and prepare an expert document which can be accepted by the court as proof that the freeholder can not be located. It is wise to seek advice from a solicitor both on proving the landlord’s absence and the application to the County Court overseeing Ealing.
I’m about to sell my ground floor apartment in Ealing.Conveyancing solicitors are to be appointed soon but I have just received a quarterly service charge demand – Do I pay up?
Your conveyancing lawyer is likely to suggest that you should pay the invoice 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 managing agents 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. This will smooth the conveyancing process.
I am attracted to a two apartments in Ealing both have about 50 years unexpired on the lease term. Should I regard a short lease as a deal breaker?
A lease is a legal document that entitles you to use the premises for a prescribed time frame. As the lease gets shorter the saleability of the lease deteriorate and it becomes more expensive to acquire a lease extension. For this reason it is advisable to increase the term of the lease. Sometimes it is difficulties arise selling premises with a short lease because mortgage lenders may be unwilling to lend money on properties of this type. Lease extension can be a protracted process. We recommend you get professional help from a conveyancer and surveyor with experience in this area
I work for a long established estate agent office in Ealing 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 conflicting advice from local Ealing conveyancing solicitors. Please can you shed some light as to whether the vendor of a flat can initiate the lease extension formalities for the purchaser on completion of the sale?
Provided that the seller has been the owner for at least 2 years it is possible, to serve a Section 42 notice to kick-start the lease extension process and assign the benefit of the notice to the purchaser. This means that the proposed purchaser 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.
An alternative approach is 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.
Can you offer any advice when it comes to finding a Ealing conveyancing firm to deal with our lease extension?
When appointing a property lawyer for lease extension works (regardless if they are a Ealing conveyancing practice) it is most important that they be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of work. We recommend that you speak with several firms including non Ealing conveyancing practices before you instructing a firm. Where the conveyancing practice is ALEP accredited then that’s a bonus. Some following of questions might be helpful:
- If they are not ALEP accredited then why not?
We have reached the end of our tether in trying to reach an agreement for a lease extension in Ealing. Can this matter be resolved via the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal?
Where there is a absentee landlord or if there is dispute about the premium for a lease extension, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can apply to the LVT to calculate the price payable.
An example of a Lease Extension matter before the tribunal for a Ealing premises is Flat 4 38 The Mall in April 2014. the Tribunal held that the premium payable for the lease extension to be £25,451 This case related to 1 flat. The the number of years remaining on the existing lease(s) was 68.7 years.