Sample questions relating to Homerton leasehold conveyancing
I have recently realised that I have 62 years unexpired on my lease in Homerton. I need to get lease extension but my landlord is missing. What options are available to me?
On the basis that 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 extended by the magistrate. You will be obliged to demonstrate that you have made all reasonable attempts to locate the landlord. In some cases a specialist should be helpful to try and locate and to produce a report to be accepted by the court as evidence that the freeholder is indeed missing. It is wise to seek advice from a solicitor both on proving the landlord’s absence and the application to the County Court overseeing Homerton.
I've found a house that appears to be perfect, at a great figure which is making it more attractive. I have subsequently found out that the title is leasehold as opposed to freehold. I would have thought that there are particular concerns purchasing a house with a leasehold title in Homerton. Conveyancing lawyers have not yet been appointed. Will they explain the issues?
The majority of houses in Homerton are freehold rather than leasehold. In this scenario it’s worth having a local conveyancer used to dealing with such properties who can assist with the conveyancing process. We note that you are purchasing in Homerton so you should seriously consider looking for a Homerton conveyancing solicitor and be sure that they have experience in advising on leasehold houses. First you will need to check the number of years remaining. As a lessee you will not be at liberty to do whatever you want with the house. The lease will likely included provisions for example obtaining the freeholder’spermission to conduct alterations. It may be necessary to pay a service charge towards the upkeep of the estate where the house is part of an estate. Your solicitor will appraise you on the various issues.
I am looking at a two flats in Homerton both have about fifty years unexpired on the leases. Will this present a problem?
There is no doubt about it. A leasehold flat in Homerton is a deteriorating asset as a result of the shortening lease. The closer the lease gets to zero years unexpired, the more it reduces the value of the property. For most purchasers and mortgage companies, leases with less than 75 years become less and less attractive. On a more positive note, leaseholders can extend their leases by serving a Section 42 Notice. One stipulation is that they must have owned the property for two years (unlike a Section 13 notice for purchasing the freehold, when leaseholders can participate from day one of ownership). When successful, they will have the right to an extension of 90 years to the current term and ground rent is effectively reduced to zero. Before moving forward with a purchase of a residence with a short lease term remaining you should talk to a solicitor specialising in lease extensions and leasehold enfranchisement. We are are happy to put you in touch with Homerton conveyancing experts who will explain the options available to you during an initial telephone conversation free of charge. A more straightforward and quicker method of extending would be to contact your landlord directly and sound him out on the prospect of extending the lease They may agree to a smaller lump sum and an increase in the ground rent, but to shorter extension terms in return. You need to ensure that the agreed terms represent good long-term value compared with the standard benefits of the Section 42 Notice and that onerous clauses are not inserted into any redrafting of the lease.
Last month I purchased a leasehold property in Homerton. Do I have any liability for service charges relating to a period prior to completion of my purchase?
In a situation where the service charge has already been demanded from the previous lessee 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).
What are your top tips when it comes to appointing a Homerton conveyancing practice to deal with our lease extension?
When appointing a conveyancer for lease extension works (regardless if they are a Homerton conveyancing firm) it is essential that he or she should be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of conveyancing. We advise that you talk with two or three firms including non Homerton conveyancing practices before you instructing a firm. Where the conveyancing practice is ALEP accredited then so much the better. Some following of questions might be helpful:
- How familiar is the practice with lease extension legislation?
Notwithstanding our best endeavours, we have been unsuccessful in trying to purchase the freehold in Homerton. Can this matter be resolved via the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal?
Absolutely. We are happy to put you in touch with a Homerton conveyancing firm who can help.
An example of a Freehold Enfranchisement case for a Homerton flat 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 affected 10 flats. The unexpired lease term was 71.25 years.