Frequently asked questions relating to North Finchley leasehold conveyancing
There are only Seventy years left on my lease in North Finchley. I now want to extend my lease but my landlord is absent. What options are available to me?
If you qualify, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can submit an application to the County Court for an order to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will enable the lease to be granted an extra 90 years by the magistrate. However, you will be required to demonstrate that you or your lawyers have used your best endeavours to track down the freeholder. On the whole an enquiry agent should be useful to try and locate and prepare a report which can be accepted by the court as evidence that the landlord can not be located. It is advisable to get professional help from a property lawyer both on investigating the landlord’s disappearance and the vesting order request to the County Court covering North Finchley.
I have just started marketing my basement flat in North Finchley.Conveyancing is yet to be initiated but I have just received a quarterly maintenance charge invoice – Do I pay up?
Your conveyancing lawyer is likely to suggest that you should pay the service charge 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 am attracted to a two maisonettes in North Finchley both have about forty five years unexpired on the lease term. Should I regard a short lease as a deal breaker?
There are no two ways about it. A leasehold flat in North Finchley is a deteriorating asset as a result of the shortening lease. The closer the lease gets to its expiry date, the more it adversely affects the marketability of the premises. The majority of purchasers and banks, leases with under 75 years become less and less marketable. On a more upbeat note, leaseholders can extend their leases by serving a Section 42 Notice. One stipulation is that they must have owned the premises 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 North Finchley conveyancing experts who will explain the options available to you during an initial telephone conversation free of charge. More often than not it is possible to negotiate informally with the freeholder to extend the lease They may agree to a smaller lump sum and an increase in the ground rent, but to shorter extension terms in return. You need to ensure that the agreed 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.
Last month I purchased a leasehold flat in North Finchley. Do I have any liability for service charges relating to a period prior to 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 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).
Having spent years of correspondence we are unable to agree with our landlord on how much the lease extension should cost for our flat in North Finchley. Does the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal have jurisdiction to calculate the appropriate figures?
in cases where there is a missing freeholder or where there is disagreement about what the lease extension should cost, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can apply to the First-tier Tribunal (Property Chamber) to judgment on the amount due.
An example of a Lease Extension decision for a North Finchley premises is Flat 2 2 Netherfield Road in April 2010. The Tribunale held that premium payable for a 90 year extension to the existing Lease should be £7,705. This case affected 1 flat. The remaining number of years on the lease was 76 years.
When it comes to leasehold conveyancing in North Finchley what are the most common lease problems?
Leasehold conveyancing in North Finchley is not unique. Most leases is drafted differently and legal mistakes in the legal wording can sometimes mean that certain clauses are erroneous. The following missing provisions could result in a defective lease:
- A provision to repair to or maintain parts of the building
- 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
You may encounter a problem when selling your property if you have a defective lease primarily because it impacts on the ability to obtain a mortgage on the property. HSBC Bank, Bank of Scotland, and TSB 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 problematic they may refuse to provide security, obliging the purchaser to pull out.