Frequently asked questions relating to Hackney leasehold conveyancing
There are only 62 years unexpired on my lease in Hackney. I now wish to get lease extension but my landlord is missing. What are my options?
If you meet the appropriate requirements, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can apply to the County Court for an order to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will mean that your lease can be granted an extra 90 years by the Court. However, you will be required to demonstrate that you or your lawyers have done all that could be expected to track down the landlord. In some cases an enquiry agent should be helpful to carry out a search and prepare an expert document which can be used as proof that the freeholder can not be located. It is wise to seek advice from a property lawyer in relation to proving the landlord’s disappearance and the application to the County Court overseeing Hackney.
Planning to complete next month on a ground floor flat in Hackney. Conveyancing solicitors assured me that they report fully within the next couple of days. What should I be looking out for?
Your report on title for your leasehold conveyancing in Hackney should include some of the following:
- Are you allowed to have a pet in the flat?
I've found a house that seems to meet my requirements, at a reasonable figure which is making it more attractive. I have since been informed that it's a leasehold rather than freehold. I am assuming that there are issues purchasing a house with a leasehold title in Hackney. Conveyancing advisers have are soon to be appointed. Will they explain the issues?
The majority of houses in Hackney are freehold rather than leasehold. In this scenario it’s worth having a local conveyancer used to dealing with such properties who can assist with the conveyancing process. it is apparent that you are purchasing in Hackney so you should seriously consider shopping around for a Hackney conveyancing practitioner and be sure that they have experience in dealing with leasehold houses. As a matter of priority you will need to check the unexpired lease term. Being a tenant you will not be at liberty to do whatever you want with the house. The lease comes with conditions for example obtaining the freeholder’spermission to carry out changes to the property. You may also be required to pay a service charge towards the maintenance of the communal areas where the house is part of an estate. Your solicitor will report to you on the legal implications.
I am employed by a busy estate agency in Hackney where we have experienced a number of flat sales put at risk due to short leases. I have been given conflicting advice from local Hackney conveyancing firms. Could you shed some light as to whether the owner of a flat can initiate the lease extension formalities 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. 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 simultaneously with completion of the disposal of the property.
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.
Can you provide any advice for leasehold conveyancing in Hackney from the perspective of speeding up the sale process?
- Much of the delay in leasehold conveyancing in Hackney can be reduced where you get in touch lawyers as soon as your agents start marketing the property and request that they start to put together the leasehold information which will be required by the purchasers’ lawyers.
- The majority landlords or managing agents in Hackney charge for providing management packs for a leasehold property. You or your lawyers should enquire as to the fee that they propose to charge. The management pack can be applied for as soon as you have a buyer, thus accelerating the process. The average time it takes to obtain the necessary information is three weeks. It is the most frequent cause of frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Hackney.
I have had difficulty in trying to reach an agreement for a lease extension in Hackney. Can this matter be resolved via the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal?
Where there is a missing landlord or where 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 First-tier Tribunal (Property Chamber) to make a decision on the price payable.
An example of a Freehold Enfranchisement decision for a Hackney residence is 150 Amhurst Road in December 2013. The tribunal concluded that the premium to be paid by the applicant for the enfranchisement of the subject property was £43,500. This case was in relation to 4 flats. The unexpired lease term was 90 (or thereabouts).