Fixed-fee leasehold conveyancing in Grahame Park:

Any conveyancing solicitor can theoretically deal with your leasehold conveyancing in Grahame Park, your mortgage provider may not be willing to work with them if the firm are not on their list of approved solicitors for conveyancing

Grahame Park leasehold conveyancing: Q and A’s

Estate agents have just been given the go-ahead to market my basement apartment in Grahame Park.Conveyancing has not commenced but I have just had a half-yearly service charge demand – what should I do?

The sensible thing to do is discharge 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 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.

My wife and I purchased a leasehold flat in Grahame Park. Conveyancing and Bank of Ireland mortgage are in place. A letter has just been received from someone claiming to own the freehold. Attached was a ground rent demand for rent dating back to 1997. The conveyancing practitioner in Grahame Park who previously acted has long since retired.What should I do?

First contact the Land Registry to be sure that this person is in fact the registered owner of the freehold reversion. There is no need to incur the fees of a Grahame Park conveyancing solicitor to do this as you can do this on the Land Registry website for £3. Rest assured that regardless, even if this is the rightful landlord, under the Limitation Act 1980 the limitation period for recovery of ground rent is six years.

Last month I purchased a leasehold property in Grahame Park. Do I have any liability for 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 ensure 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 employed by a reputable estate agency in Grahame Park where we have witnessed a few leasehold sales derailed as a result of leases having less than 80 years remaining. I have received conflicting advice from local Grahame Park conveyancing solicitors. Could you confirm whether the vendor of a flat can start the lease extension formalities for the purchaser on completion of the sale?

As long as the seller has owned the lease 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 buyer need not have to wait 2 years to extend their lease. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment has to be done 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.

Our conveyancer has advised that he intends to complete and exchange simultaneously on our sale of a £225000 apartment in Grahame Park in just under a week. The freeholder has quoted £420 for Certificate of Compliance, insurance certificate and previous years statements of service charge. Is the landlord entitled to charge such fees for a leasehold conveyance in Grahame Park?

For the majority of leasehold sales in Grahame Park conveyancing will involve, questions about the management of a building inevitably needing to be answered directly by the freeholder or its agent, this includes :

  • Answering conveyancing due diligence questions
  • Where consent is required before sale in Grahame Park
  • Supplying insurance information
  • 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 Grahame Park leasehold property is £350. For Grahame 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 provide the information.

I have attempted and failed to negotiate with my landlord for a lease extension without success. Can the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal decide on such matters? Can you recommend a Grahame Park conveyancing firm to act on my behalf?

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

An example of a Freehold Enfranchisement case for a Grahame Park flat is 1 & 1A Sunningfields Crescent in September 2013. The Tribunals calculation of the amount to be paid into court in respect of the value of the freehold interest is £11,997 in respect of Flat 1 and £15,781 in respect of Flat 1A for a total of £27,778. This case affected 2 flats. The unexpired lease term was 71.5 years.

Other Topics

Lease Extensions in Grahame Park