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Top Five Questions relating to Homerton leasehold conveyancing

I only have Fifty years remaining on my lease in Homerton. I now wish to extend my lease but my freeholder is missing. 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 for permission to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will mean that your lease can be lengthened by the Court. However, you will be required to prove that you or your lawyers have done all that could be expected to track down the lessor. On the whole an enquiry agent would be helpful to carry out a search and to produce a report which can 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 vesting order request to the County Court overseeing Homerton.

Planning to sign contracts shortly on a ground floor flat in Homerton. Conveyancing lawyers inform me that they will have a report out to me on Monday. Are there areas in the report that I should be focusing on?

The report on title for your leasehold conveyancing in Homerton should include some of the following:

  • The physical extent of the demise. This will be the property itself but might include a roof space or cellar if applicable.
  • Ground rent - how much and when you need to pay, and also know whether this will change in the future
  • Whether your lease has a provision for a sinking fund?
  • You should have a good understanding of the insurance provisions
  • Changes to the flat (alterations and additions)
  • I don't know whether the lease allows me to alter or improve anything in the flat - you should know whether it applies to all alterations or just structural alteration, and whether consent is required
  • The landlord’s obligations to repair and maintain the building. It is important that you know who is responsible for the repair and maintenance of every part of the building For details of the information to be included in your report on your leasehold property in Homerton please enquire of your conveyancer in advance of your conveyancing in Homerton

  • I have just appointed agents to market my ground floor apartment in Homerton.Conveyancing has not commenced but I have just received a quarterly service charge invoice – should I leave it to the buyer to sort out?

    Your conveyancing lawyer is likely to suggest that you should discharge 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. This will smooth the conveyancing process.

    Do you have any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in Homerton from the point of view of saving time on the sale process?

    • A significant proportion of the delay in leasehold conveyancing in Homerton can be avoided where you appoint lawyers as soon as you market your property and ask them to put together the leasehold information which will be required by the buyers conveyancers.
    • Many freeholders or Management Companies in Homerton charge for providing management packs for a leasehold homes. You or your lawyers should enquire as to the actual amount of the charges. 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 Homerton.
  • In the event that you altered the property did you need the Landlord’s approval? Have you, for example installed wooden flooring? Homerton leases often stipulate that internal structural changes or laying down wooden flooring require a licence issued by the Landlord approving such alterations. Should you fail to have the approvals in place do not contact the landlord without contacting your conveyancer before hand.
  • Some Homerton 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 financial (bank) and professional references. The bank reference will need to confirm that the buyers are financially capable of paying the annual 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 actual amount of the service charge so that they can pass this information on to the purchasers or their solicitors.
  • If you have the benefit of shareholding in the Management Company, you should ensure that you have the original share document. Obtaining a replacement share certificate is often a lengthy process and delays many a Homerton conveyancing transaction. If a reissued share is needed, do contact the company director and secretary or managing agents (if applicable) for this at the earliest opportunity.

  • We expect to complete our sale of a £500000 garden flat in Homerton next week. The landlords agents has quoted £324 for Certificate of Compliance, building insurance schedule and previous years service charge statements. Is the landlord entitled to charge such fees for a leasehold conveyance in Homerton?

    For the majority of leasehold sales in Homerton conveyancing will involve, questions about the management of a building inevitably needing to be answered directly by the freeholder or its agent, this includes :

    • Completing pre-exchange enquiries
    • Where consent is required before sale in Homerton
    • 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 Homerton leasehold premises is £350. For Homerton 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 provide answers.

    I have attempted and failed to negotiate with my landlord to extend my lease without success. Can the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal decide on such issues? Can you recommend a Homerton conveyancing firm to represent me?

    in cases where there is a missing landlord or where there is dispute about what the lease extension should cost, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 it is possible to make an application to the First-tier Tribunal (Property Chamber) to calculate the price payable.

    An example of a Freehold Enfranchisement decision for a Homerton residence is 104 Nightingale Road in May 2009. The Tribunal's Decision is that the premium torbe paid for the enfranchisement in this case is £112,174 This case was in relation to 10 flats. The the unexpired residue of the current lease was 71.25 years.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Homerton