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Hoxton leasehold conveyancing Example Support Desk Enquiries

I own a leasehold house in Hoxton. Conveyancing and Chelsea Building Society mortgage went though with no issue. I have received a letter from someone claiming to own the freehold. Attached was a ground rent demand for rent dating back to 1996. The conveyancing solicitor in Hoxton who previously acted has now retired.Any advice?

The first thing you should do is contact HMLR to be sure that the individual purporting to own the freehold is in fact the new freeholder. It is not necessary to incur the fees of a Hoxton conveyancing firm to do this as it can be done on-line for a few pound. Rest assured that regardless, even if this is the legitimate freeholder, under the Limitation Act 1980 the limitation period for recovery of ground rent is six years.

I am tempted by the attractive purchase price for a two maisonettes in Hoxton both have in the region of forty five years unexpired on the leases. Will this present a problem?

There are plenty of short leases in Hoxton. The lease is a legal document that entitles you to use the premises for a prescribed time frame. As the lease gets shorter the saleability of the lease reduces and results in it becoming more costly to extend the lease. For this reason it is often a good idea to increase the term of the lease. Sometimes it is difficult to sell a property with a short lease as mortgage companies less inclined to grant a loan on such properties. Lease enfranchisement can be a protracted process. We advise that you seek professional help from a solicitor and surveyor with experience in this field

Last month I purchased a leasehold property in Hoxton. Am I liable to pay service charges relating to a period prior to my ownership?

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. 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 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).

I work for a reputable estate agency in Hoxton where we have experienced a number of flat sales derailed as a result of short leases. I have received inconsistent advice from local Hoxton conveyancing solicitors. Please can you confirm whether the owner of a flat can initiate the lease extension process for the purchaser on completion of the sale?

Provided that the seller has been the owner for at least 2 years it is possible, to serve a Section 42 notice to kick-start the lease extension process and assign the benefit of the notice to the purchaser. The benefit of this is that the buyer need not have to wait 2 years to extend their lease. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment needs to be completed prior to, or simultaneously with completion of the disposal of the property.

An alternative approach is to extend the lease informally by agreement with the landlord either before or after the sale. If you are informally negotiating there are no rules and so you cannot insist on the landlord agreeing to grant an extension or transferring the benefit of an agreement to the purchaser.

Can you offer any advice when it comes to choosing a Hoxton conveyancing firm to carry out our lease extension conveyancing?

If you are instructing a solicitor for lease extension works (regardless if they are a Hoxton conveyancing firm) it is imperative that he or she should be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of conveyancing. We recommend that you make enquires with several firms including non Hoxton conveyancing practices prior to instructing a firm. Where the conveyancing practice is ALEP accredited then that’s a bonus. Some following of questions could be helpful:

  • How familiar is the firm with lease extension legislation?
  • How many lease extensions have they carried out in Hoxton in the last year?

  • I have attempted and failed to negotiate with my landlord for a lease extension without success. Can one make an application to the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal? Can you recommend a Hoxton conveyancing firm to act on my behalf?

    in cases where there is a absentee freeholder or where there is disagreement about what the lease extension should cost, under the relevant legislation it is possible to make an application to the First-tier Tribunal (Property Chamber) to make a decision on the premium.

    An example of a Lease Extension case for a Hoxton residence is 137 & 139 Haberdasher Street in December 2013. The Tribunal determines in accordance with section 48 and Schedule 13 of the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 that the premium for the extended lease for each Property should be £12,350.00. This case was in relation to 2 flats. The the unexpired term as at the valuation date was 72.39 years.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Hoxton