Fixed-fee leasehold conveyancing in Harmondsworth:

While any conveyancing practice can theoretically handle your leasehold conveyancing in Harmondsworth, your mortgage provider may unwilling to work with them if the firm are not on their list of approved solicitors for conveyancing

Top Five Questions relating to Harmondsworth leasehold conveyancing

There are only 72 years left on my lease in Harmondsworth. I now wish to extend my lease but my landlord is absent. What should I do?

If you qualify, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can submit an application to the County Court for an order to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will mean that your lease can be lengthened by the Court. You will be obliged to prove that you or your lawyers have done all that could be expected to find the freeholder. In some cases an enquiry agent would be useful to try and locate and prepare a report to be used as proof that the freeholder can not be located. It is advisable to get professional help from a conveyancer both on proving the landlord’s absence and the application to the County Court overseeing Harmondsworth.

Back In 2000, I bought a leasehold flat in Harmondsworth. Conveyancing and Nationwide Building Society mortgage are in place. A letter has just been received from someone claiming to own the reversionary interest in the property. Attached was a demand for arrears of ground rent dating back to 1998. The conveyancing practitioner in Harmondsworth who previously acted has long since retired.What should I do?

The first thing you should do is contact HMLR to be sure that the individual purporting to own the freehold is indeed the new freeholder. You do not need to incur the fees of a Harmondsworth conveyancing lawyer to do this as it can be done on-line for £3. You should note that regardless, even if this is the rightful freeholder, under the Limitation Act 1980 the limitation period for recovery of ground rent is six years.

I've recently bought a leasehold property in Harmondsworth. Do I have any liability for 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. However, 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 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).

Can you provide any advice for leasehold conveyancing in Harmondsworth with the intention of speeding up the sale process?

  • A significant proportion of the frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Harmondsworth can be avoided where you instruct lawyers as soon as you market your property and ask them to collate the leasehold information needed by the purchasers’ representatives.
  • Many landlords or managing agents in Harmondsworth charge for supplying management packs for a leasehold property. You or your lawyers should find out the actual amount of the charges. The management information sought on or before finding a buyer, thus reducing delays. The typical amount of time it takes to obtain the necessary information is three weeks. It is the most common cause of frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Harmondsworth.
  • If you have had conflict with your landlord or managing agents it is essential that these are resolved before the property is put on the market. The purchasers and their solicitors will be reluctant to purchase a flat where there is a current dispute. You may need to swallow your pride and discharge any arrears of service charge or settle the dispute prior to completion of the sale. It is therefore preferable to have any dispute settled prior to the contract papers being issued to the buyers’ solicitors. You are still duty bound to disclose details of the dispute to the buyers, but it is better to present the dispute as historic rather than ongoing.
  • If you are supposed to have a share in the Management Company, you should ensure that you hold the original share document. Organising a duplicate share certificate is often a lengthy process and slows down many a Harmondsworth home move. Where a duplicate share is necessary, you should approach the company director and secretary or managing agents (where applicable) for this at the earliest opportunity.
  • You believe that you know 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 proceed with the purchase of a leasehold property the remaining number of years is below 75 years. It is therefore important at an early stage that you consider whether the lease requires a lease extension. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your home on the market for sale.

  • After months of correspondence we are unable to agree with our landlord on how much the lease extension should cost for our flat in Harmondsworth. Can we issue an application to the Residential Property Tribunal Service?

    You certainly can. We can put you in touch with a Harmondsworth conveyancing firm who can help.

    An example of a Freehold Enfranchisement decision for a Harmondsworth 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 affected 2 flats. The the unexpired residue of the current lease was 69 years.

    What are the frequently found defects that you see in leases for Harmondsworth properties?

    There is nothing unique about leasehold conveyancing in Harmondsworth. Most leases are individual and legal mistakes in the legal wording 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 elements of the building
    • Insurance obligations
    • Clauses dealing with recovering service charges for expenditure on the building or common parts.
    • Maintenance charge proportions which don’t add up to the correct percentage

    A defective lease will likely cause problems when trying to sell a property as they can affect a potential buyer’s ability to obtain a mortgage. Yorkshire Building Society, Bank of Scotland, and Alliance & Leicester 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 problematic they may refuse to grant the mortgage, forcing the purchaser to pull out.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Harmondsworth