Common questions relating to Lambeth leasehold conveyancing
Having checked my lease I have discovered that there are only 68 years remaining on my lease in Lambeth. I now wish to extend my lease but my landlord is can not be found. What are my options?
On the basis that you meet the appropriate requirements, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can apply to the County Court for an order to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will enable the lease to be extended by the magistrate. However, you will be required to prove that you or your lawyers have made all reasonable attempts to locate the lessor. In some cases a specialist would be useful to carry out a search and prepare an expert document to be accepted by the court as evidence that the landlord is indeed missing. It is advisable to get professional help from a conveyancer in relation to investigating the landlord’s disappearance and the application to the County Court overseeing Lambeth.
Expecting to exchange soon on a studio apartment in Lambeth. Conveyancing lawyers have said that they are sending me a report within the next couple of days. What should I be looking out for?
The report on title for your leasehold conveyancing in Lambeth should include some of the following:
- The length of the lease term You should be advised as what happens when the lease ends, and aware of the importance of not letting the lease term falling below eighty years
I've found a house that appears to meet my requirements, at a great price which is making it more attractive. I have just discovered that it's a leasehold as opposed to freehold. I am assuming that there are particular concerns buying a house with a leasehold title in Lambeth. Conveyancing lawyers have not yet been appointed. Will my lawyers set out the implications of buying a leasehold house in Lambeth ?
Most houses in Lambeth are freehold and not leasehold. This is one of the situations where having a local solicitor used to dealing with such properties who can assist with the conveyancing process. it is apparent that you are buying in Lambeth so you should seriously consider looking for a Lambeth conveyancing solicitor and be sure that they have experience in transacting on leasehold houses. As a matter of priority you will need to check the number of years remaining. As a leaseholder you will not be at liberty to do whatever you want to the property. The lease will likely included provisions such as requiring the landlord’spermission to conduct alterations. It may be necessary to pay a service charge towards the maintenance of the communal areas where the property is located on an estate. Your solicitor will appraise you on the various issues.
I've recently bought a leasehold flat in Lambeth. Do I have any liability for service charges for periods before 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. 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 am the leaseholder of a garden flat in Lambeth. In the absence of agreement between myself and the freeholder, can the Leasehold valuation Tribunal determine the sum payable for the purchase of the freehold?
Where there is a absentee landlord or where there is dispute about what the lease extension should cost, under the relevant legislation you can apply to the LVT to arrive at the price.
An example of a Lease Extension matter before the tribunal for a Lambeth premises is Flats 12A & 19, Evelyn Mansions Carlisle Place in June 2009. The Tribunal held that the price to be paid for the new lease of Flat 12A is £168,824, For the other flat the price was set at £169,110 This case was in relation to 2 flats. The unexpired term was 56 years.
Are there frequently found deficiencies that you witness in leases for Lambeth properties?
There is nothing unique about leasehold conveyancing in Lambeth. All leases are individual and drafting errors can sometimes mean that certain sections are not included. For example, if your lease is missing any of the following, it could be defective:
- Repairing obligations to or maintain elements of the property
- Insurance obligations
- Clauses dealing with recovering service charges for expenditure on the building or common parts.
- Service charge per centages that don't add up correctly leaving a shortfall
A defective lease can cause issues when trying to sell a property primarily because it impacts on the ability to obtain a mortgage on the property. Barclays , Bank of Scotland, and Alliance & Leicester all have express requirements 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, obliging the buyer to pull out.