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Frequently asked questions relating to Harlington leasehold conveyancing

Having had my offer accepted I require leasehold conveyancing in Harlington. Before diving in I want to be sure as to the remaining lease term.

If the lease is registered - and most are in Harlington - then the leasehold title will always include the short particulars of the lease, namely the date; the term; and the original parties. From a conveyancing perspective such details then enable any prospective buyer and lender to confirm that any lease they are looking at is the one relevant to that title.For any other purpose, such as confirming how long the term was granted for and calculating what is left, then the register should be sufficient on it's own.

I've recently bought a leasehold flat in Harlington. Am I liable to pay service charges for periods before my ownership?

Where the service charge has already been demanded from the previous owner and they have not paid you would not usually be personally liable for the arrears. Strange as it may seem, your landlord may still be able to take action to forfeit the lease. It is an essential part of leasehold conveyancing for your conveyancer to be sure 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).

Can you offer any advice when it comes to finding a Harlington conveyancing practice to deal with our lease extension?

When appointing a solicitor for your lease extension (regardless if they are a Harlington conveyancing practice) it is most important that they be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of conveyancing. We recommend that you make enquires with two or three firms including non Harlington conveyancing practices before you instructing a firm. Where the conveyancing practice is ALEP accredited then that’s a bonus. Some following of questions could be of use:

  • If the firm is not ALEP accredited then why not?
  • What are the costs for lease extension work?

  • We expect to complete the sale of our £275000 apartment in Harlington next Friday . The managing agents has quoted £420 for Landlord’s certificate, insurance certificate and previous years service charge statements. Is it legal for a freeholder to charge an administration fee for a leasehold conveyance in Harlington?

    Harlington conveyancing on leasehold apartments normally involves the purchaser’s solicitor sending enquiries for the landlord to answer. Although the landlord is not legally bound to respond to these enquiries the majority will be willing to assist. They are at liberty levy a reasonable charge for responding to questions or supplying documentation. There is no set fee. The average costs for the paperwork that you are referring to is over three hundred pounds, in some situations it is in excess of £800. The management information fee levied by the landlord must be sent together with a summary of entitlements and obligations in relation to administration fees, without which the invoice is not strictly payable. Reality however dictates that one has no option but to pay whatever is requested of you if you want to sell the property.

    Notwithstanding our best efforts, we have been unsuccessful in trying to purchase the freehold in Harlington. Can this matter be resolved via the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal?

    if there is a absentee landlord or if there is dispute about what the lease extension should cost, under the relevant statutes you can apply to the LVT to make a decision on the sum to be paid.

    An example of a Freehold Enfranchisement matter before the tribunal for a Harlington residence is 164 Nestles Avenue in October 2013. The tribunal agreed with the proposed price of £20,158 for the freehold and determined that that sum is the amount to be paid into court This case was in relation to 2 flats. The unexpired lease term was 69 years.

    Are there frequently found deficiencies that you witness in leases for Harlington properties?

    There is nothing unique about leasehold conveyancing in Harlington. All leases are unique and legal mistakes in the legal wording can result in certain provisions are wrong. The following missing provisions could result in a defective lease:

    • A provision to repair to or maintain parts of the building
    • A duty to insure the building
    • Clauses dealing with recovering service charges for expenditure on the building or common parts.
    • Service charge per centages that don't add up correctly leaving a shortfall

    A defective lease can cause problems when trying to sell a property primarily because it impacts on the ability to obtain a mortgage on the property. Birmingham Midshires, The Royal Bank of Scotland, and Barclays Direct all have very detailed conveyancing instructions when it comes to what is expected in a lease. If a mortgage lender believes that the lease does not cover certain provisions they may refuse to provide security, obliging the purchaser to pull out.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Harlington