Quality lawyers for Leasehold Conveyancing in Keston

Any conveyancing solicitor can theoretically handle your leasehold conveyancing in Keston, your mortgage provider may not be willing to work with them if the firm are not on their list of approved solicitors for conveyancing

Frequently asked questions relating to Keston leasehold conveyancing

I have just appointed agents to market my 2 bed apartment in Keston.Conveyancing lawyers have not yet been instructed but I have just received a yearly service charge invoice – Do I pay up?

It best that you clear 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 until 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.

I've found a house that appears to meet my requirements, at a great figure which is making it all the more appealing. I have subsequently found out that the title is leasehold rather than freehold. I am assuming that there are issues purchasing a leasehold house in Keston. Conveyancing advisers have are about to be instructed. Will they explain the issues?

Most houses in Keston are freehold rather than leasehold. In this scenario it’s worth having a local solicitor used to dealing with such properties who can assist with the conveyancing process. It is clear that you are buying in Keston so you should seriously consider looking for a Keston conveyancing practitioner and check that they are used to advising on leasehold houses. First you will need to check the number of years remaining. As a tenant you will not be entirely free to do whatever you want with the house. The lease will likely included provisions such as requiring the freeholder’sconsent to carry out alterations. You may also be required to pay a service charge towards the maintenance of the estate where the property is part of an estate. Your lawyer should advise you fully on all the issues.

I work for a busy estate agency in Keston where we have witnessed a few flat sales jeopardised due to leases having less than 80 years remaining. I have been given conflicting advice from local Keston conveyancing firms. Please can you clarify whether the seller of a flat can commence the lease extension process for the purchaser on completion of the sale?

Provided that the seller has owned the lease for at least 2 years it is possible, to serve a Section 42 notice to start the lease extension process and assign the benefit of the notice to the purchaser. This means that the proposed purchaser need not have to wait 2 years to extend their lease. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment has to be done before, 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 buyer.

Can you provide any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in Keston with the intention of speeding up the sale process?

  • Much of the frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Keston can be reduced where you appoint lawyers the minute your agents start marketing the property and request that they start to put together the leasehold information which will be required by the purchasers’ conveyancers.
  • If you have carried out any alterations to the residence would they have required Landlord’s consent? Have you, for example laid down wooden flooring? Most leases in Keston state that internal structural changes or laying down wooden flooring require a licence issued by the Landlord acquiescing to such works. Should you fail to have the approvals to hand you should not contact the landlord without checking with your conveyancer before hand.
  • If you have had any disputes with your freeholder or managing agents it is very important that these are settled prior to the flat being put on the market. The buyers and their solicitors will be concerned about purchasing a flat where a dispute is unresolved. You may need to swallow your pride and pay any arrears of service charge or resolve the dispute prior to the buyers completing the purchase. It is therefore preferable to have any dispute settled prior to the contract papers being issued to the buyers’ solicitors. You will still have to reveal particulars of the dispute to the purchasers, but it is better to reveal the dispute as over as opposed to unresolved.
  • If you hold a share in a the freehold, you should make sure that you have the original share document. Organising a new share certificate can be a lengthy formality and slows down many a Keston home move. If a new share certificate is required, you should approach the company director and secretary or managing agents (where applicable) for this at the earliest opportunity.
  • You believe that you know the number of years remaining on your lease but it would be wise to double-check via your solicitors. A purchaser's conveyancer will not be happy to advise their client to where the lease term is less than 75 years. In the circumstances it is essential at an early stage that you identify whether the lease term for your property needs extending. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your premises on the market for sale.

  • I have tried to negotiate informally with with my landlord for a lease extension without any joy. Can one apply to the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal? Can you recommend a Keston conveyancing firm to help?

    You certainly can. We can put you in touch with a Keston conveyancing firm who can help.

    An example of a Lease Extension matter before the tribunal for a Keston flat is 1 Southlands Court Southlands Road in September 2013. The Leasehold Valuation Tribunal determined that the premium to be paid by the tenant on the grant of a new lease, in accordance with section 56 and Schedule 13 of the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 was £30,541 This case affected 1 flat. The the number of years remaining on the existing lease(s) was 50.57 years.

    Are there common defects that you see in leases for Keston properties?

    Leasehold conveyancing in Keston is not unique. Most leases is drafted differently and drafting errors can result in certain provisions are wrong. For example, if your lease is missing any of the following, it could be defective:

    • A provision to repair to or maintain parts of the building
    • A duty to insure the building
    • 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 may have a problem when selling your property if you have a defective lease as they can affect a potential buyer’s ability to obtain a mortgage. National Westminster Bank, Barnsley Building Society, and Nottingham Building Society all have express conveyancing instructions when it comes to what is expected in a lease. Where a lender has been advised by their lawyers that the lease does not cover certain provisions they may refuse to provide security, forcing the purchaser to pull out.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Keston