Questions and Answers: Hanwell leasehold conveyancing
I have recently realised that I have Sixty One years left on my flat in Hanwell. I now wish to extend my lease but my landlord is absent. 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 enable the lease to be extended by the Court. However, you will be required to prove that you or your lawyers have used your best endeavours to find the freeholder. For most situations an enquiry agent may be helpful to try and locate and to produce a report to be accepted by the court as proof that the freeholder is indeed missing. It is advisable to get professional help from a property lawyer in relation to proving the landlord’s disappearance and the application to the County Court covering Hanwell.
Estate agents have just been given the go-ahead to market my basement flat in Hanwell.Conveyancing solicitors are to be appointed soon but I have just had a yearly service charge demand – should I leave it to the buyer to sort out?
It best that you pay 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 management companies will not acknowledge the buyer unless 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.
I've found a house that appears to be perfect, at a reasonable price which is making it more attractive. I have just discovered that it's a leasehold rather than freehold. I would have thought that there are particular concerns purchasing a leasehold house in Hanwell. Conveyancing solicitors have are soon to be appointed. Will my lawyers set out the implications of buying a leasehold house in Hanwell ?
The majority of houses in Hanwell 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. We note that you are purchasing in Hanwell so you should seriously consider looking for a Hanwell conveyancing solicitor and check that they have experience in dealing with leasehold houses. As a matter of priority you will need to check the number of years remaining. Being a leaseholder you will not be entirely free to do whatever you want with the house. The lease comes with conditions such as requiring the freeholder’sconsent to conduct alterations. You may also be required to pay a contribution towards the upkeep of the communal areas where the property is part of an estate. Your solicitor will advise you fully on all the issues.
I am tempted by the attractive purchase price for a couple of maisonettes in Hanwell both have about 50 years remaining on the leases. Do I need to be concerned?
There are plenty of short leases in Hanwell. The lease is a right to use the premises for a prescribed time frame. As a lease gets shorter the value of the lease deteriorate and it becomes more costly to extend the lease. For this reason it is generally wise to extend the lease term. Sometimes it is difficult to sell a property with a short lease because mortgage lenders may be unwilling to lend money on such properties. Lease enfranchisement can be a difficult process. We advise that you get professional help from a solicitor and surveyor with experience in this arena
I am a negotiator for a long established estate agency in Hanwell where we see a number of leasehold sales jeopardised due to leases having less than 80 years remaining. I have been given conflicting advice from local Hanwell conveyancing firms. Please can you clarify whether the owner of a flat can instigate the lease extension process 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 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 for a lease extension. 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.
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.
My wife and I have hit a brick wall in seeking a lease extension in Hanwell. Can the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal adjudicate on premiums?
if there is a absentee landlord or where there is disagreement about what the lease extension should cost, under the relevant statutes it is possible to make an application to the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal to decide the premium.
An example of a Freehold Enfranchisement case for a Hanwell premises is 6 Jessamine Road in August 2013. The Tribunals valuation (as annexed to the decision) calculated the amount payable as £18,355 for the freehold reversion This case related to 2 flats. The the unexpired residue of the current lease was 72.39 years.