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Common questions relating to Kensington leasehold conveyancing

I wish to let out my leasehold flat in Kensington. Conveyancing solicitor who did the purchase is retired - so can't ask him. Do I need to ask my freeholder for their consent?

The lease dictates the relationship between the freeholder and you the leaseholder; specifically, it will indicate if subletting is prohibited, or permitted but only subject to certain caveats. The accepted inference is that if the lease contains no specific ban or restriction, subletting is allowed. The majority of leases in Kensington do not contain subletting altogether – such a provision would adversely affect the market value the flat. In most cases there is simply a requirement that the owner notifies the freeholder, possibly sending a duplicate of the tenancy agreement.

There are only Seventy years remaining on my lease in Kensington. I am keen to extend my lease but my landlord is missing. What should I do?

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 enable the lease to be granted an extra 90 years by the magistrate. You will be obliged to prove that you or your lawyers have used your best endeavours to locate the landlord. On the whole a specialist would be useful to conduct investigations and prepare a report to be accepted by the court as evidence that the freeholder can not be located. It is wise to seek advice from a property lawyer both on investigating the landlord’s absence and the vesting order request to the County Court covering Kensington.

I’m about to sell my basement flat in Kensington.Conveyancing has not commenced but I have just had 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 service charge 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 managing agents 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. Having a clear account will assist your cause and will leave you no worse off financially.

My wife and I purchased a leasehold house in Kensington. Conveyancing and Birmingham Midshires mortgage went though with no issue. I have received a letter from someone saying they have taken over the freehold. Attached was a ground rent demand for rent dating back to 1994. The conveyancing solicitor in Kensington who acted for me is not around.Any advice?

First make enquiries of the Land Registry to make sure that this person is indeed the registered owner of the freehold reversion. You do not need to instruct a Kensington conveyancing practitioner to do this as it can be done on-line for £3. Rest assured that regardless, even if this is the legitimate landlord, under the Limitation Act 1980 the limitation period for recovery of ground rent is six years.

Having spent months of negotiations we cannot agree with our landlord on how much the lease extension should cost for our flat in Kensington. Does the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal have jurisdiction to calculate the appropriate figures?

Most definitely. We can put you in touch with a Kensington conveyancing firm who can help.

An example of a Lease Extension case for a Kensington residence is 93 Oakwood Court in June 2010. the LVT determined that the premium to be paid for the new lease was £492,083, This case was in relation to 1 flat. The unexpired lease term was 37.79 years.

What makes a Kensington lease problematic?

There is nothing unique about leasehold conveyancing in Kensington. All leases are individual and legal mistakes in the legal wording can result in certain clauses are erroneous. For example, if your lease is missing any of the following, it could be defective:

  • Repairing obligations to or maintain parts 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

You could encounter difficulties when selling your property if you have a defective lease primarily because it impacts on the ability to obtain a mortgage on the property. Birmingham Midshires, Leeds Building Society, and Aldermore 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, forcing the buyer to withdraw.

Other Topics

Lease Extensions in Kensington