Fixed-fee leasehold conveyancing in Highgate:

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Highgate leasehold conveyancing: Q and A’s

I am in need of some leasehold conveyancing in Highgate. Before I get started I require certainty as to the number of years remaining on the lease.

If the lease is recorded at the land registry - and most are in Highgate - 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.

My fiance and I may need to let out our Highgate basement flat temporarily due to a career opportunity. We instructed a Highgate conveyancing firm in 2001 but they have since shut and we did not think at the time seek any advice as to whether the lease permits subletting. How do we find out?

Some leases for properties in Highgate do contain a provision to say that subletting is only allowed with permission. The landlord cannot unreasonably refuse but, in such cases, they would need to see references. Experience suggests that problems are usually caused by unsatisfactory tenants rather than owner-occupiers and for that reason you can expect the freeholder to take up the references and consider them carefully before granting consent.

What are your top tips when it comes to appointing a Highgate conveyancing practice to deal with our lease extension?

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

  • If the firm is not ALEP accredited then why not?
  • Can they put you in touch with client in Highgate who can give a testimonial?

  • Our conveyancer has advised that he intends to complete and exchange simultaneously on the sale of our £475000 garden flat in Highgate on Monday in a week. The freeholder has quoted £348 for Landlord’s certificate, building insurance schedule and previous years statements of service charge. Is it legal for a freeholder to charge an administration fee for a leasehold conveyance in Highgate?

    For most leasehold sales in Highgate conveyancing will involve, queries regarding the management of a building inevitably needing to be answered directly by the freeholder or its agent, this includes :

    • Completing pre-exchange questions
    • Where consent is required before sale in Highgate
    • Supplying insurance information
    • Deeds of covenant upon sale
    • Registering of the assignment of the change of lessee after a sale
    Your solicitor will have no control over the level of the charges for this information but the average costs for the information for Highgate leasehold property is £350. For Highgate conveyancing transactions it is customary for the seller to pay for these costs. The landlord or their agents are under no legal obligation to answer such questions most will be willing to do so - albeit often at exorbitant prices where the fees bear little relation to the work involved. Unfortunately there is no law that requires fixed charges for administrative tasks. Neither is there any legal time frame by which they are required to supply answers.

    I have tried to negotiate informally with with my landlord to extend my lease without any joy. Can the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal adjudicate on such matters? Can you recommend a Highgate conveyancing firm to represent me?

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

    An example of a Lease Extension matter before the tribunal for a Highgate residence is Flat 2A 19 Shepherds Hill in June 2014. The tribunal concluded in accordance with section 48 and schedule 13 of the Leasehold Reform,Housing and Urban Development Act (the 1993 Act) that the premium payable in respect of the grant of a new lease for the Flat be £24,303 (twenty four thousand three hundred and three pounds) This case affected 1 flat. The the unexpired term as at the valuation date was 67.85 years.

    In relation to leasehold conveyancing in Highgate what are the most frequent lease problems?

    There is nothing unique about leasehold conveyancing in Highgate. Most leases are individual and drafting errors can result in certain provisions are missing. The following missing provisions could result in a defective lease:

    • Repairing obligations to or maintain parts of the property
    • A duty to insure the building
    • A provision for the recovery of money spent for the benefit of another party.
    • Maintenance charge proportions which don’t add up to the correct percentage

    A defective lease will likely cause issues when trying to sell a property primarily because it impacts on the ability to obtain a mortgage on the property. Yorkshire Building Society, Chelsea Building Society, and Godiva Mortgages Ltd all have very detailed 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 provide security, obliging the purchaser to pull out.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Highgate