Common questions relating to Northwood leasehold conveyancing
Having had my offer accepted I require leasehold conveyancing in Northwood. Before I set the wheels in motion I would like to find out the remaining lease term.
Assuming the lease is registered - and most are in Northwood - 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 have recently realised that I have 68 years remaining on my flat in Northwood. I need to get lease extension but my freeholder is absent. What are my options?
If you meet the appropriate requirements, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can apply to the County Court for for permission to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will mean that your lease can be lengthened by the Court. You will be obliged to prove that you or your lawyers have used your best endeavours to find the landlord. On the whole a specialist would be helpful to carry out a search and prepare a report to be accepted by the court as proof that the landlord is indeed missing. It is wise to seek advice from a conveyancer both on investigating the landlord’s absence and the application to the County Court covering Northwood.
Back In 2002, I bought a leasehold house in Northwood. Conveyancing and Leeds Building Society mortgage are in place. A letter has just been received from someone saying they have taken over the freehold. Attached was a demand for arrears of ground rent dating back to 1991. The conveyancing solicitor in Northwood who acted for me is not around.What should I do?
The first thing you should do is make enquiries of the Land Registry to make sure that this person is in fact the new freeholder. There is no need to instruct a Northwood conveyancing practitioner to do this as you can do this on the Land Registry website for a few pound. You should note that in any event, even if this is the rightful landlord, under the Limitation Act 1980 no more than 6 years of rent can be collected.
I've recently bought a leasehold property in Northwood. Do I have any liability for service charges for periods before my ownership?
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 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 have attempted and failed to negotiate with my landlord for a lease extension without getting anywhere. Can the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal adjudicate on such issues? Can you recommend a Northwood conveyancing firm to help?
in cases where there is a missing freeholder or if there is dispute 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 determine the sum to be paid.
An example of a Lease Extension matter before the tribunal for a Northwood flat is Flats 8, 11 and 15 Craigmore Court 46 Murray Road in December 2013. The tribunal held that the price payable by the Applicant tenant of Flat 8 to acquire an extended lease shall be £26,438 plus £1 to the intermediate lessee . The tribunal held that the price payable by the Applicant tenants of Flat 11 to acquire an extended lease shall be £26,791 plus £1 to the intermediate lessee. The tribunal held that the price payable by the Applicant tenant of Flat 15 to acquire an extended lease shall be £26,638 plus £1 to the intermediate lessee . This case was in relation to 3 flats. The unexpired lease term was 71 years.
When it comes to leasehold conveyancing in Northwood what are the most common lease defects?
Leasehold conveyancing in Northwood is not unique. Most leases are individual and legal mistakes in the legal wording can sometimes mean that certain provisions are erroneous. The following missing provisions could result in a defective lease:
- A provision to repair to or maintain elements of the premises
- A duty to insure the building
- Clauses dealing with recovering service charges for expenditure on the building or common parts.
- Maintenance charge proportions which don’t add up to the correct percentage
A defective lease can cause problems when trying to sell a property primarily because it impacts on the ability to obtain a mortgage on the property. Lloyds TSB Bank, The Royal Bank of Scotland, and TSB all have very detailed 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 grant the mortgage, forcing the purchaser to withdraw.