Common questions relating to Forest Hill leasehold conveyancing
I am intending to rent out my leasehold apartment in Forest Hill. Conveyancing solicitor who did the purchase is retired - so can't ask him. Do I need to ask my freeholder for permission?
The lease dictates the relationship between the landlord and you the leaseholder; in particular, it will indicate if subletting is banned, or permitted but only subject to certain conditions. The rule is that if the lease contains no specific ban or restriction, subletting is permitted. Most leases in Forest Hill do not contain strict prohibition on subletting – such a clause would undoubtedly devalue the property. Instead, there is usually a basic requirement that the owner notifies the freeholder, possibly sending a duplicate of the sublease.
Back In 2001, I bought a leasehold house in Forest Hill. Conveyancing and Platform Home Loans Ltd mortgage organised. A letter has just been received from someone saying they have taken over the reversionary interest in the property. Attached was a ground rent demand for rent dating back to 1998. The conveyancing practitioner in Forest Hill who acted for me is not around.What should I do?
First contact the Land Registry to make sure that the individual claiming to own the freehold is indeed the registered owner of the freehold reversion. You do not need to instruct a Forest Hill conveyancing firm to do this as you can do this on the Land Registry website for less than a fiver. You should note that in any event, even if this is the legitimate freeholder, under the Limitation Act 1980 no more than 6 years of rent can be collected.
I've recently bought a leasehold flat in Forest Hill. Do I have any liability for service charges for periods before my ownership?
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. It is an essential part 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).
I am a negotiator for a reputable estate agency in Forest Hill where we have witnessed a number of leasehold sales put at risk due to short leases. I have received inconsistent advice from local Forest Hill conveyancing solicitors. Could you shed some light as to whether the owner of a flat can start the lease extension process 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 commence the lease extension process and assign the benefit of the notice to the purchaser. This means 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 sale.
Alternatively, it may be possible 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.
Completion in due on the disposal of our £175000 garden flat in Forest Hill in 5 days. The management company has quoted £396 for Landlord’s certificate, building insurance schedule and previous years service charge statements. Is the landlord entitled to charge exorbitant fees for a flat conveyance in Forest Hill?
Forest Hill conveyancing on leasehold flats often necessitates the purchaser’s solicitor sending enquiries for the landlord to address. Although the landlord is not legally bound to respond to these enquiries most will be content to do so. They may charge a reasonable administration fee for answering questions or supplying documentation. There is no set fee. The average costs for the information that you are referring to is over three hundred pounds, in some cases it is above £800. The management information fee invoiced by the landlord must be sent together with a summary of entitlements and obligations in respect of administration fees, otherwise the invoice is technically not due. Reality however dictates that one has little option but to pay whatever is requested of you should you wish to complete the sale of your home.
I am the proprietor of a second floor flat in Forest Hill. In the absence of agreement between myself and the landlord, can the Leasehold valuation Tribunal make a decision on the sum due for the purchase of the freehold?
Most certainly. We are happy to put you in touch with a Forest Hill conveyancing firm who can help.
An example of a Lease Extension case for a Forest Hill residence is Flat 1 40-42 Ewelme Road in August 2012. the Tribunal assessed the premium for the lease extension in the sum of £11,800 This case was in relation to 1 flat. The unexpired term was 61.81 years.