Leasehold Conveyancing in North Finchley - Get a Quote from the leasehold experts approved by your lender

While any conveyancing practice can theoretically deal with your leasehold conveyancing in North Finchley, your mortgage provider may not be willing to work with them if the firm are not on their list of approved solicitors for conveyancing

North Finchley leasehold conveyancing: Q and A’s

I am on look out for some leasehold conveyancing in North Finchley. Before diving in I require certainty as to the unexpired term of the lease.

Assuming the lease is registered - and most are in North Finchley - 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 work for a long established estate agency in North Finchley where we have witnessed a few leasehold sales put at risk as a result of short leases. I have been given inconsistent advice from local North Finchley conveyancing firms. Please can you shed some light as to whether the owner of a flat can instigate the lease extension formalities 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 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 needs to be completed before, or simultaneously with completion of the disposal of the property.

An alternative approach is 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 purchaser.

Can you offer any advice when it comes to finding a North Finchley conveyancing practice to deal with our lease extension?

When appointing a solicitor for lease extension works (regardless if they are a North Finchley conveyancing practice) it is most important that he or she should be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of work. We advise that you make enquires with several firms including non North Finchley conveyancing practices prior to instructing a firm. Where the conveyancing practice is ALEP accredited then that’s a bonus. Some following of questions might be helpful:

  • How familiar is the practice with lease extension legislation?
  • What volume of lease extensions have they carried out in North Finchley in the last twenty four months?

  • Can you provide any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in North Finchley from the perspective of speeding up the sale process?

    • A significant proportion of the frustration in leasehold conveyancing in North Finchley can be reduced where you appoint lawyers as soon as you market your property and ask them to collate the leasehold information needed by the purchasers’ representatives.
    • Many landlords or Management Companies in North Finchley levy fees for providing management packs for a leasehold property. You or your lawyers should discover the fee that they propose to charge. The management pack sought as soon as you have a buyer, thus reducing delays. The typical amount of time it takes to obtain the necessary information is three weeks. It is the most common reason for delay in leasehold conveyancing in North Finchley.
  • If you have carried out any alterations to the premises would they have required Landlord’s permission? Have you, for example installed wooden flooring? North Finchley leases often stipulate that internal structural alterations or addition of wooden flooring calls for a licence issued by the Landlord acquiescing to such changes. Where you dont have the consents in place do not communicate with the landlord without checking with your solicitor in advance.
  • If there is a history of any disputes with your landlord or managing agents it is very important that these are settled before the property is marketed. The buyers and their solicitors will be warry about purchasing a flat where a dispute is ongoing. You may need to swallow your pride and discharge any arrears of service charge or settle the dispute prior to completion of the sale. It is therefore preferable to have any dispute settled ahead of the contract papers being issued to the buyers’ solicitors. You will still have to reveal details of the dispute to the purchasers, but it is better to present the dispute as historic as opposed to unsettled.
  • You may think that you are aware of the number of years remaining on your lease but you should double-check via your solicitors. A purchaser's conveyancer will not be happy to advise their client to proceed with the purchase of a leasehold property the remaining number of years is under 80 years. It is therefore important at an as soon as possible that you identify whether the lease term for your property needs extending. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your home on the market for sale.

  • Our conveyancer has advised that he intends to complete and exchange simultaneously on our sale of a £400000 apartment in North Finchley in just under a week. The freeholder has quoted £324 for Certificate of Compliance, insurance certificate and 3 years service charge statements. Is it legal for a freeholder to charge an administration fee for a leasehold conveyance in North Finchley?

    North Finchley conveyancing on leasehold flats normally requires the purchaser’s solicitor sending enquiries for the landlord to address. Although the landlord is not legally bound to answer such questions most will be content to do so. They are at liberty charge a reasonable charge for responding to enquiries or supplying documentation. There is no set fee. The average costs for the paperwork that you are referring to is £350, in some situations it is above £800. The management information fee levied by the landlord must be sent together with a summary of entitlements and obligations in relation to administration charges, otherwise the invoice is not strictly payable. Reality however dictates that you have no choice but to pay whatever is requested of you if you want to exchange contracts with the buyer.

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

    Absolutely. We can put you in touch with a North Finchley conveyancing firm who can help.

    An example of a Lease Extension matter before the tribunal 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 was in relation to 1 flat. The unexpired term was 76 years.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in North Finchley