Questions and Answers: Haggerston leasehold conveyancing
I have recently realised that I have 68 years unexpired on my flat in Haggerston. I need 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 lengthened by the magistrate. However, you will be required to demonstrate that you have used your best endeavours to find the landlord. In some cases an enquiry agent should be helpful to conduct investigations and to produce a report to be used as evidence that the landlord can not be located. It is advisable to get professional help from a property lawyer both on devolving into the landlord’s absence and the application to the County Court overseeing Haggerston.
I have just appointed agents to market my garden apartment in Haggerston.Conveyancing lawyers have not yet been instructed but I have just received a quarterly service charge invoice – what should I do?
It best that you clear 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. Having a clear account will assist your cause and will leave you no worse off financially.
Back In 2006, I bought a leasehold house in Haggerston. Conveyancing and Aldermore mortgage organised. A letter has just been received from someone claiming to own the freehold. Attached was a demand for arrears of ground rent dating back to 1991. The conveyancing solicitor in Haggerston who previously acted has long since retired.What should I do?
The first thing you should do is contact the Land Registry to be sure that this person is in fact the registered owner of the freehold reversion. It is not necessary to instruct a Haggerston conveyancing firm to do this as you can do this on the Land Registry website for less than a fiver. Rest assured that in any event, even if this is the legitimate landlord, under the Limitation Act 1980 no more than 6 years of rent can be collected.
I am attracted to a two flats in Haggerston both have in the region of fifty years remaining on the leases. Should I regard a short lease as a deal breaker?
There is no doubt about it. A leasehold apartment in Haggerston is a deteriorating asset as a result of the shortening lease. The nearer the lease gets to zero years unexpired, the more it reduces the salability of the property. The majority of buyers and banks, leases with under 75 years become less and less attractive. On a more positive note, leaseholders can extend their leases by serving a Section 42 Notice. One stipulation is that they must have owned the property for two years (unlike a Section 13 notice for purchasing the freehold, when leaseholders can participate from day one of ownership). When successful, they will have the right to an extension of 90 years to the current term and ground rent is effectively reduced to zero. Before moving forward with a purchase of premises with a short lease term remaining you should talk to a solicitor specialising in lease extensions and leasehold enfranchisement. We are are happy to put you in touch with Haggerston conveyancing experts who will explain the options available to you during an initial telephone conversation free of charge. A more straightforward and quicker method of extending would be to contact your landlord directly and sound him out on the prospect of extending the lease They may agree to a smaller lump sum and an increase in the ground rent, but to shorter extension terms in return. You need to ensure that any new terms represent good long-term value compared with the standard benefits of the Section 42 Notice and that onerous clauses are not inserted into any redrafting of the lease.
I am employed by a long established estate agent office in Haggerston where we have witnessed a number of leasehold sales jeopardised due to leases having less than 80 years remaining. I have been given contradictory information from local Haggerston conveyancing solicitors. Could you confirm whether the owner of a flat can start the lease extension process for the buyer?
Provided that 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. The benefit of this is 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 before, or at the same time as completion of the disposal of the property.
Alternatively, it may be possible 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 buyer.
Having spent years of correspondence we cannot agree with our landlord on how much the lease extension should cost for our flat in Haggerston. Does the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal have jurisdiction to calculate the appropriate figures?
Absolutely. We are happy to put you in touch with a Haggerston conveyancing firm who can help.
An example of a Lease Extension case for a Haggerston residence is 137 & 139 Haberdasher Street in December 2013. The Tribunal determines in accordance with section 48 and Schedule 13 of the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 that the premium for the extended lease for each Property should be £12,350.00. This case related to 2 flats. The the number of years remaining on the existing lease(s) was 72.39 years.