Recently asked questions relating to Hackney Wick leasehold conveyancing
I have recently realised that I have Fifty years unexpired on my flat in Hackney Wick. I now want to extend my lease but my freeholder is missing. What are my options?
On the basis that you meet the appropriate requirements, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can submit an application 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. However, you will be required to demonstrate that you or your lawyers have made all reasonable attempts to track down the freeholder. In some cases a specialist would be helpful to conduct investigations and to produce a report to be accepted by the court as evidence that the freeholder can not be located. It is wise to seek advice from a property lawyer in relation to investigating the landlord’s disappearance and the vesting order request to the County Court overseeing Hackney Wick.
I've found a house that appears to meet my requirements, at a reasonable price which is making it more attractive. I have subsequently been informed that the title is leasehold rather than freehold. I would have thought that there are particular concerns buying a house with a leasehold title in Hackney Wick. Conveyancing solicitors have not yet been instructed. Will my lawyers set out the risks of buying a leasehold house in Hackney Wick ?
The majority of houses in Hackney Wick are freehold and not leasehold. In this scenario it’s worth having a local solicitor who is familiar with the area can help the conveyancing process. It is clear that you are buying in Hackney Wick so you should seriously consider shopping around for a Hackney Wick conveyancing solicitor and be sure that they have experience in advising on leasehold houses. First you will need to check the unexpired lease term. Being a tenant you will not be entirely free to do whatever you want with the house. The lease will likely included provisions such as requiring the landlord’sconsent to conduct alterations. You may also be required to pay a service charge towards the maintenance of the communal areas where the house is located on an estate. Your conveyancer should appraise you on the various issues.
I am a negotiator for a long established estate agent office in Hackney Wick where we see a number of leasehold sales put at risk as a result of leases having less than 80 years remaining. I have been given inconsistent advice from local Hackney Wick conveyancing solicitors. Can you confirm whether the seller of a flat can commence the lease extension process for the buyer?
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 can avoid having to sit tight for 2 years to extend their lease. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment needs to be completed 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 choosing a Hackney Wick conveyancing firm to carry out our lease extension conveyancing?
If you are instructing a solicitor for lease extension works (regardless if they are a Hackney Wick conveyancing firm) it is imperative that he or she should be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of work. We recommend that you speak with two or three firms including non Hackney Wick conveyancing practices before you instructing a firm. Where the conveyancing practice is ALEP accredited then so much the better. Some following of questions might be of use:
- How many lease extensions have they conducted in Hackney Wick in the last year?
I have attempted and failed to negotiate with my landlord to extend my lease without any joy. Can the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal decide on such matters? Can you recommend a Hackney Wick conveyancing firm to represent me?
if there is a absentee landlord or where there is disagreement about what the lease extension should cost, under the relevant legislation you can apply to the LVT to calculate the premium.
An example of a Freehold Enfranchisement case for a Hackney Wick flat is 12 Nutfield Road in July 2014. the Tribunal judged that the price to be paid by the applicants for the freehold interest should be £19,572 This case was in relation to 2 flats. The the unexpired residue of the current lease was 72.02 years.
What makes a Hackney Wick lease defective?
Leasehold conveyancing in Hackney Wick is not unique. All leases is drafted differently and drafting errors can sometimes mean that certain sections are missing. For example, if your lease is missing any of the following, it could be defective:
- A provision to repair to or maintain parts of the property
- Insurance obligations
- A provision for the recovery of money spent for the benefit of another party.
- Service charge per centages that don't add up correctly leaving a shortfall
A defective lease can cause issues when trying to sell a property as they can affect a potential buyer’s ability to obtain a mortgage. Santander, Coventry Building Society, and Barclays Direct all have express 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, forcing the purchaser to pull out.