Recently asked questions relating to Mortlake leasehold conveyancing
There are only Fifty years left on my flat in Mortlake. I now want to get lease extension but my freeholder is can not be found. What options are available to me?
On the basis that you meet the appropriate requirements, 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 prove that you or your lawyers have done all that could be expected to find the lessor. On the whole a specialist may be helpful to carry out a search and prepare a report to be used as evidence that the freeholder can not be located. It is advisable to get professional help from a property lawyer both on proving the landlord’s absence and the vesting order request to the County Court covering Mortlake.
I am hoping to sign contracts shortly on a basement flat in Mortlake. Conveyancing solicitors assured me that they report fully within the next couple of days. Are there areas in the report that I should be focusing on?
The report on title for your leasehold conveyancing in Mortlake should include some of the following:
- The physical extent of the demise. This will be the flat itself but might incorporate a loft or cellar if applicable.
I've recently bought a leasehold flat in Mortlake. Do I have any liability for service charges for periods before my ownership?
In a situation 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 ensure 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 a negotiator for a long established estate agency in Mortlake where we see a few leasehold sales derailed due to leases having less than 80 years remaining. I have been given inconsistent advice from local Mortlake conveyancing solicitors. Could you confirm 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 been the owner for at least 2 years it is possible, to serve a Section 42 notice to kick-start the lease extension process and assign the benefit of the notice to the purchaser. The benefit of this is that the buyer 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.
Alternatively, it may be possible to agree the lease extension with the freeholder 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.
If all goes to plan we aim to complete the sale of our £125000 garden flat in Mortlake in just under a week. The landlords agents has quoted £312 for Certificate of Compliance, insurance certificate and 3 years statements of service charge. Is it legal for a freeholder to charge exorbitant fees for a leasehold conveyance in Mortlake?
Mortlake conveyancing on leasehold flats often necessitates the buyer’s conveyancer sending questions for the landlord to answer. Although the landlord is under no legal obligation to address such questions the majority will be willing to assist. They are entitled charge a reasonable charge for responding to questions or supplying documentation. There is no set fee. The average fee for the paperwork that you are referring to is over three hundred pounds, in some transactions it is in excess of £800. The management information fee required by the landlord must be accompanied by a summary of rights and obligations in relation to administration charges, otherwise the invoice is technically not due. In reality you have little choice but to pay whatever is requested of you should you wish to sell the property.
Despite our best endeavours, we have been unsuccessful in trying to purchase the freehold in Mortlake. Can this matter be resolved via the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal?
Where there is a missing landlord or if there is disagreement about the premium for a lease extension, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 it is possible to make an application to the First-tier Tribunal (Property Chamber) to decide the premium.
An example of a Freehold Enfranchisement case for a Mortlake property is 19 St. Margarets Crescent in August 2010. the tribunal was of the view that the premium to be paid by the leaseholder for the freehold reversion was £51,983.00 This case was in relation to 3 flats. The remaining number of years on the lease was 66.25 years.