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Kingston upon Thames leasehold conveyancing Example Support Desk Enquiries

Jane (my partner) and I may need to sub-let our Kingston upon Thames garden flat temporarily due to a career opportunity. We instructed a Kingston upon Thames conveyancing practice in 2002 but they have since shut and we did not have the foresight to get any advice as to whether the lease allows us to sublet. How do we find out?

The lease governs the relationship between the landlord and you the leaseholder; in particular, it will say if subletting is not allowed, or permitted but only subject to certain conditions. The accepted inference is that if the lease contains no specific ban or restriction, subletting is allowed. The majority of leases in Kingston upon Thames do not contain an absolute prevention of subletting – such a provision would adversely affect the market value the flat. In most cases there is a basic requirement that the owner notifies the freeholder, possibly supplying a duplicate of the sublease.

I only have 68 years unexpired on my flat in Kingston upon Thames. I need to extend my lease but my freeholder is absent. 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 for permission to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will mean that your lease can be extended by the Court. However, you will be required to demonstrate that you or your lawyers have made all reasonable attempts to locate the freeholder. On the whole a specialist should be useful to conduct investigations and to produce a report to be accepted by the court as evidence that the landlord is indeed missing. It is advisable to get professional help from a property lawyer both on devolving into the landlord’s disappearance and the vesting order request to the County Court overseeing Kingston upon Thames.

I am a negotiator for a reputable estate agency in Kingston upon Thames where we have experienced a number of leasehold sales jeopardised as a result of leases having less than 80 years remaining. I have been given contradictory information from local Kingston upon Thames conveyancing solicitors. Please can you shed some light as to whether the vendor of a flat can initiate the lease extension process for the purchaser on completion of the sale?

As long as the seller has been the owner for at least 2 years it is possible, to serve a Section 42 notice to commence the lease extension process and assign the benefit of the notice to the purchaser. This means that the buyer need not have to sit tight for 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 sale.

Alternatively, it may be possible 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.

What are your top tips when it comes to finding a Kingston upon Thames conveyancing practice to deal with our lease extension?

If you are instructing a solicitor for your lease extension (regardless if they are a Kingston upon Thames conveyancing firm) it is most important that he or she should be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of work. We suggested that you speak with two or three firms including non Kingston upon Thames conveyancing practices prior to instructing a firm. Where the conveyancing practice is ALEP accredited then that’s a bonus. Some following of questions might be of use:

  • How familiar is the firm with lease extension legislation?
  • What are the costs for lease extension work?

  • Do you have any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in Kingston upon Thames with the purpose of expediting the sale process?

    • A significant proportion of the frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Kingston upon Thames can be reduced where you appoint lawyers the minute your agents start marketing the property and ask them to put together the leasehold information needed by the buyers conveyancers.
    • Many landlords or managing agents in Kingston upon Thames levy fees for providing management packs for a leasehold property. You or your lawyers should discover the fee that they propose to charge. The management pack can be applied for on or before finding a buyer, thus reducing delays. The typical amount of time it takes to receive management information is three weeks. It is the most usual cause of delay in leasehold conveyancing in Kingston upon Thames.
  • If there is a history of 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 reluctant to purchase a flat where there is a current dispute. You may have to bite the bullet and discharge any arrears of service charge or settle the dispute prior to completion of the sale. It is therefore preferable to have any dispute settled prior to the contract papers being issued to the buyers’ solicitors. You are still duty bound to disclose particulars of the dispute to the purchasers, but it is clearly preferable to reveal the dispute as over rather than unsettled.
  • If you are supposed to have a share in the freehold, you should make sure that you are holding the original share document. Obtaining a duplicate share certificate can be a time consuming formality and frustrates many a Kingston upon Thames conveyancing transaction. If a duplicate share is needed, do contact the company officers or managing agents (where relevant) for this as soon as possible.
  • You may think that you are aware of the number of years left on your lease but it would be advisable verify this by asking your solicitors. A buyer’s conveyancer will be unlikely to recommend their client to where the lease term is less than 80 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 property on the market for sale.

  • I have had difficulty in trying to purchase the freehold in Kingston upon Thames. Can the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal adjudicate on premiums?

    You certainly can. We are happy to put you in touch with a Kingston upon Thames conveyancing firm who can help.

    An example of a Lease Extension case for a Kingston upon Thames residence is Flat D 15 Claremont Gardens in September 2013. TheTribunal determined in accordance with section48 and Schedule13 of the Leasehold Reform,Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 that the premium for the extended lease should be fourteen thousand one hundred and eighty seven pounds (£14,187.00) This case related to 1 flat.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Kingston upon Thames