Experts for Leasehold Conveyancing in Hainault

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Hainault leasehold conveyancing: Q and A’s

I want to let out my leasehold apartment in Hainault. Conveyancing solicitor who did the purchase is retired - so can't ask him. Is permission from the freeholder required?

Even though your previous Hainault conveyancing solicitor is no longer available you can check your lease to see if it allows you to sublet the apartment. The accepted inference is that if the deeds are silent, subletting is allowed. There may be a precondition that you are obliged to seek consent via your landlord or other appropriate person in advance of subletting. The net result is you not allowed to sublet without first obtaining consent. The consent must not not be unreasonably turned down. If the lease prohibits you from subletting the property you will need to ask your landlord for their consent.

I today plan to offer on a house that appears to be perfect, at a reasonable figure which is making it more attractive. I have subsequently been informed that the title is leasehold as opposed to freehold. I would have thought that there are issues buying a house with a leasehold title in Hainault. Conveyancing lawyers have are about to be appointed. Will they explain the issues?

Most houses in Hainault are freehold rather than leasehold. This is one of the situations where having a local conveyancer used to dealing with such properties who can assist with the conveyancing process. It is clear that you are purchasing in Hainault so you should seriously consider shopping around for a Hainault conveyancing practitioner and be sure that they have experience in dealing with leasehold houses. First you will need to check the number of years remaining. As a lessee you will not be entirely free to do whatever you want to the property. The lease comes with conditions such as requiring the landlord’sconsent to conduct alterations. You may also be required to pay a maintenance charge towards the maintenance of the estate where the house is located on an estate. Your conveyancer should appraise you on the various issues.

I've recently bought a leasehold flat in Hainault. Do I have any liability for service charges relating to a period prior to my ownership?

In a situation where the service charge has already been demanded from the previous lessee and they have not paid you would not usually be personally liable for the arrears. However, 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 long established estate agent office in Hainault where we have witnessed a number of flat sales derailed due to leases having less than 80 years remaining. I have been given conflicting advice from local Hainault conveyancing firms. Please can you clarify whether the seller of a flat can commence the lease extension process for the purchaser on completion of the sale?

Provided that the seller has owned the lease for at least 2 years it is possible, to serve a Section 42 notice to 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 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.

Can you provide any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in Hainault from the point of view of speeding up the sale process?

  • Much of the frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Hainault can be reduced if you appoint lawyers the minute your agents start advertising the property and request that they start to put together the leasehold information which will be required by the buyers conveyancers.
  • The majority freeholders or Management Companies in Hainault charge for supplying management packs for a leasehold property. You or your lawyers should enquire as to the fee that they propose to charge. The management information sought as soon as you have a buyer, thus reducing delays. The typical amount of time it takes to receive management information is three weeks. It is the most frequent cause of delay in leasehold conveyancing in Hainault.
  • A minority of Hainault leases require Landlord’s consent to the sale and approval of the buyers. If this is the case, it would be prudent to place the estate agents on notice to make sure that the purchasers obtain bank and professional references. Any bank reference will need to confirm that the buyers are financially capable of paying the yearly service charge and the actual amount of the service charge should be quoted in the bank’s letter. You will therefore need to provide your estate agents with the service charge figures so that they can pass this information on to the purchasers or their solicitors.
  • If you are supposed to have a share in the Management Company, you should make sure that you have the original share certificate. Organising a re-issued share certificate can be a lengthy formality and frustrates many a Hainault home move. Where a reissued share is needed, you should approach the company officers or managing agents (if relevant) for this at the earliest opportunity.
  • You may think that you are aware of the number of years remaining on your lease but it would be wise to double-check via your lawyers. A buyer’s conveyancer will be unlikely to recommend their client to to exchange contracts if the lease term is under 80 years. In the circumstances it is essential at an early stage that you identify whether the lease term requires a lease extension. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your home on the market for sale.

  • I am the leaseholder of a first floor flat in Hainault. Given that I can not reach agreement with the landlord, can the Leasehold valuation Tribunal make a decision on the amount payable for a lease extension?

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

    An example of a Freehold Enfranchisement case for a Hainault residence is 201 & 201a St. Barnabas Road in October 2013. The Tribunal decided that the price to be paid by the Applicants for the freehold interest is £20,071. This case was in relation to 2 flats. The the number of years remaining on the existing lease(s) was 69.26 years.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Hainault