Questions and Answers: Perivale leasehold conveyancing
Frank (my husband) and I may need to let out our Perivale basement flat temporarily due to a new job. We instructed a Perivale conveyancing firm in 2003 but they have closed and we did not have the foresight to get any guidance as to whether the lease permits subletting. How do we find out?
Some leases for properties in Perivale do contain a provision to say that subletting is only permitted with prior consent from the landlord. The landlord is not entitled to unreasonably withhold but, in such cases, they would need to review references. Experience dictates that problems are usually caused by unsatisfactory tenants rather than owner-occupiers and for that reason you can expect the freeholder to take up the references and consider them carefully before granting permission.
I today plan to offer on a house that seems to be perfect, at a reasonable figure which is making it all the more appealing. I have just discovered that the title is leasehold rather than freehold. I would have thought that there are issues purchasing a leasehold house in Perivale. Conveyancing advisers have are soon to be appointed. Will they explain the issues?
The majority of houses in Perivale are freehold rather than leasehold. This is one of the situations where having a local conveyancer used to dealing with such properties who can help the conveyancing process. We note that you are purchasing in Perivale in which case you should be shopping around for a Perivale conveyancing practitioner and check 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 with the house. The lease will likely included provisions such as obtaining the landlord’sconsent to carry out alterations. You may also be required to pay a maintenance charge towards the maintenance of the estate where the house is located on an estate. Your conveyancer should appraise you on the various issues.
Last month I purchased a leasehold house in Perivale. Do I have any liability for service charges relating to a period prior to my ownership?
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. It is an essential part 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).
Can you offer any advice when it comes to choosing a Perivale conveyancing practice to deal with our lease extension?
When appointing a solicitor for your lease extension (regardless if they are a Perivale conveyancing firm) it is imperative that he or she should be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of conveyancing. We suggested that you speak with two or three firms including non Perivale conveyancing practices prior to instructing a firm. If the firm is ALEP accredited then so much the better. Some following of questions might be useful:
- If they are not ALEP accredited then why not?
I inherited a first flat in Perivale. In the absence of agreement between myself and the freeholder, can the Leasehold valuation Tribunal make a decision on the premium payable for the purchase of the freehold?
if there is a absentee freeholder or where there is dispute about the premium for a lease extension, under the relevant legislation it is possible to make an application to the LVT to calculate the price.
An example of a Lease Extension decision for a Perivale flat is Ground Floor Flat 79 London Road in September 2012. the Tribunal held that the premium payable for the lease extension should be £7,636 This case affected 1 flat. The unexpired term was 74 years.
When it comes to leasehold conveyancing in Perivale what are the most common lease defects?
There is nothing unique about leasehold conveyancing in Perivale. All leases are individual and legal mistakes in the legal wording can sometimes mean that certain provisions are wrong. For example, if your lease is missing any of the following, it could be defective:
- Repairing obligations to or maintain parts of the premises
- Insurance obligations
- 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
You will encounter difficulties when selling your property if you have a defective lease primarily because it impacts on the ability to obtain a mortgage on the property. National Westminster Bank, Bank of Scotland, and Platform Home Loans Ltd 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 does not cover certain provisions they may refuse to grant the mortgage, obliging the buyer to withdraw.