Fixed-fee leasehold conveyancing in Ladywell:

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Recently asked questions relating to Ladywell leasehold conveyancing

Having had my offer accepted I require leasehold conveyancing in Ladywell. Before diving in I want to be sure as to the remaining lease term.

Assuming the lease is registered - and most are in Ladywell - then the leasehold title will always include the basic details of the lease, namely the date; the term; and the original parties. From a conveyancing perspective such details then enable any prospective buyer and lender to confirm that any lease they are looking at is the one relevant to that title.For any other purpose, such as confirming how long the term was granted for and calculating what is left, then the register should be sufficient on it's own.

I am looking at a two flats in Ladywell which have in the region of fifty years unexpired on the lease term. should I be concerned?

There are no two ways about it. A leasehold apartment in Ladywell is a wasting 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. The majority of purchasers and lenders, 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 premises 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 Ladywell 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 You may find he or she is happy to negotiate informally and willing to consider your offer straight off, without having to involve anyone else. This will save you time and money and it could help you reach a lower price on the lease. You need to ensure that any new 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.

I've recently bought a leasehold flat in Ladywell. Do I have any liability for service charges for periods before completion of my purchase?

In a situation where the service charge has already been demanded from the previous owner 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. A critical element 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 long established estate agency in Ladywell where we see a few leasehold sales put at risk as a result of short leases. I have been given contradictory information from local Ladywell conveyancing solicitors. Can you shed some light as to whether the owner of a flat can instigate 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 commence the lease extension process and assign the benefit of the notice to the purchaser. The benefit of this is that the buyer can avoid having 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 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.

Our conveyancer has advised that he intends to complete and exchange simultaneously on the sale of our £250000 garden flat in Ladywell next Friday . The freeholder has quoted £312 for Landlord’s certificate, building insurance schedule and 3 years service charge statements. Is it legal for a freeholder to charge an administration fee for a flat conveyance in Ladywell?

Ladywell conveyancing on leasehold apartments normally necessitates administration charges invoiced by landlords agents :

  • Completing pre-contract enquiries
  • Where consent is required before sale in Ladywell
  • Supplying insurance information
  • Deeds of covenant upon sale
  • Registering of the assignment of the change of lessee after a sale
Your solicitor will have no control over the level of the charges for this information but the average costs for the information for Ladywell leasehold property is £350. For Ladywell conveyancing transactions it is customary for the seller to pay for these costs. The landlord or their agents are under no legal obligation to answer such questions most will be willing to do so - albeit often at exorbitant prices where the fees bear little relation to the work involved. Unfortunately there is no law that requires fixed charges for administrative tasks. Neither is there any legal time frame by which they are obliged to provide answers.

I have tried to negotiate informally with with my landlord for a lease extension without getting anywhere. Can the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal decide on such matters? Can you recommend a Ladywell conveyancing firm to act on my behalf?

Most certainly. We can put you in touch with a Ladywell conveyancing firm who can help.

An example of a Freehold Enfranchisement decision for a Ladywell flat is 44 Elmer Road in January 2013. The Tribunal dacied that amount to be paid by the Leaseholders for the Landlords freehold reversion was £12,951 as at the valuation date (20" September 2012).This matter was referred back to the Bromley County Court to deal with costs, fees and any other outstanding matters. This case affected 2 flats. The the unexpired term as at the valuation date was 74.25 years.

Other Topics

Lease Extensions in Ladywell