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Common questions relating to Morden leasehold conveyancing

Having had my offer accepted I require leasehold conveyancing in Morden. Before diving in I require certainty as to the number of years remaining on the lease.

Assuming the lease is recorded at the land registry - and 99.9% are in Morden - then the leasehold title will always include the short particulars 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 have just started marketing my 2 bed flat in Morden.Conveyancing has not commenced but I have just received a half-yearly maintenance charge invoice – Do I pay up?

Your conveyancing lawyer is likely to suggest that you should discharge the invoice 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.

I today plan to offer on a house that seems to meet my requirements, at a great price which is making it all the more appealing. I have just been informed that it's a leasehold as opposed to freehold. I am assuming that there are particular concerns purchasing a house with a leasehold title in Morden. Conveyancing advisers have are soon to be instructed. Will my lawyers set out the risks of buying a leasehold house in Morden ?

The majority of houses in Morden are freehold and not leasehold. In this scenario it’s worth having a local conveyancer who is familiar with the area can assist with the conveyancing process. It is clear that you are buying in Morden in which case you should be shopping around for a Morden conveyancing solicitor and be sure that they have experience in dealing with 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 for example obtaining the landlord’spermission to carry out alterations. It may be necessary to pay a service charge towards the maintenance of the communal areas where the house is located on an estate. Your solicitor should report to you on the legal implications.

We expect to complete our sale of a £125000 maisonette in Morden in just under a week. The freeholder has quoted £396 for Certificate of Compliance, insurance certificate and previous years service charge statements. Is it legal for a freeholder to charge exorbitant fees for a leasehold conveyance in Morden?

Morden conveyancing on leasehold apartments more often than not involves the purchaser’s conveyancer submitting questions for the landlord to address. Although the landlord is not legally bound to answer such questions most will be content to assist. They may charge a reasonable administration fee for answering enquiries or supplying documentation. There is no set fee. The average fee for the paperwork that you are referring to is £350, in some situations it exceeds £800. The management information fee levied by the landlord must be accompanied by a summary of entitlements and obligations in respect of administration fees, without which the charge is not strictly payable. Reality however dictates that one has little option but to pay whatever is requested of you should you wish to sell the property.

I have tried to negotiate informally with with my landlord for a lease extension without any joy. Can the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal adjudicate on such matters? Can you recommend a Morden conveyancing firm to act on my behalf?

if there is a missing landlord or if there is dispute about the premium for a lease extension, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can apply to the First-tier Tribunal (Property Chamber) to assess the price payable.

An example of a Lease Extension matter before the tribunal for a Morden property is 14 Nutwell Street in January 2014. The premium payable for the acquisition of a new lease of the subject premises was in the sum of £30,523 This case was in relation to 1 flat. The the unexpired residue of the current lease was 62.94 years.

Are there frequently found problems that you see in leases for Morden properties?

Leasehold conveyancing in Morden is not unique. Most leases are unique and drafting errors can sometimes mean that certain sections 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 premises
  • Insurance obligations
  • A provision for the recovery of money spent for the benefit of another party.
  • 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. HSBC Bank, Leeds Building Society, and Alliance & Leicester 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 is defective they may refuse to provide security, obliging the purchaser to withdraw.

Other Topics

Lease Extensions in Morden