Fixed-fee leasehold conveyancing in Petersham:

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Common questions relating to Petersham leasehold conveyancing

There are only 68 years left on my flat in Petersham. I now wish to extend my lease but my landlord is can not be found. What are my options?

On the basis that you qualify, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can apply to the County Court for an order 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 demonstrate that you or your lawyers have done all that could be expected to locate the freeholder. In some cases a specialist may be useful to carry out a search and to produce a report which can be used as evidence that the freeholder is indeed missing. It is advisable to get professional help from a solicitor both on devolving into the landlord’s disappearance and the application to the County Court overseeing Petersham.

I've found a house that seems to be perfect, at a great figure which is making it all the more appealing. I have just been informed that it's a leasehold rather than freehold. I would have thought that there are particular concerns buying a house with a leasehold title in Petersham. Conveyancing solicitors have not yet been instructed. Will my lawyers set out the risks of buying a leasehold house in Petersham ?

The majority of houses in Petersham are freehold and not leasehold. This is one of the situations where having a local conveyancer used to dealing with such properties who can assist with the conveyancing process. It is clear that you are purchasing in Petersham so you should seriously consider shopping around for a Petersham conveyancing practitioner and check that they are used to dealing with leasehold houses. As a matter of priority you will need to check the unexpired lease term. Being a lessee you will not be entirely free to do whatever you want to the property. The lease comes with conditions such as obtaining the freeholder’spermission to conduct alterations. You may also be required to pay a contribution towards the maintenance of the communal areas where the house is part of an estate. Your lawyer will appraise you on the various issues.

I've recently bought a leasehold flat in Petersham. Am I liable to pay service charges for periods before 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 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).

Do you have any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in Petersham from the perspective of saving time on the sale process?

  • A significant proportion of the delay in leasehold conveyancing in Petersham can be bypassed if you get in touch lawyers as soon as you market your property and request that they start to put together the leasehold information needed by the purchasers’ conveyancers.
  • Many freeholders or managing agents in Petersham levy fees for providing management packs for a leasehold premises. You or your lawyers should find out the actual amount of the charges. The management pack sought as soon as you have a buyer, thus reducing delays. The typical amount of time it takes to receive management information is three weeks. It is the most common cause of frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Petersham.
  • If you have carried out any alterations to the property would they have required Landlord’s approval? Have you, for example laid down wooden flooring? Petersham leases often stipulate that internal structural alterations or laying down wooden flooring necessitate a licence issued by the Landlord consenting to such changes. Should you fail to have the approvals to hand you should not communicate with the landlord without checking with your conveyancer in advance.
  • A minority of Petersham leases require Landlord’s consent to the sale and approval of the buyers. If this applies to your lease, it would be prudent to notify your estate agents to make sure that the purchasers obtain financial (bank) and professional references. Any bank reference should make it clear that the buyer is able to meet the annual service charge and the actual amount of the service charge should be quoted in the bank’s letter. You will therefore need to provide your estate agents with the service charge figures so that they can pass this information on to the buyers or their solicitors.
  • If there is a history of any disputes with your freeholder or managing agents it is essential that these are resolved before the property is marketed. The buyers and their solicitors will be concerned about purchasing a flat where there is a current dispute. You may need to swallow your pride and pay any arrears of service charge or settle the dispute prior to the buyers completing the purchase. It is therefore preferable to have any dispute settled ahead of the contract papers being issued to the buyers’ solicitors. You are still duty bound to disclose particulars of the dispute to the buyers, but it is better to present the dispute as over rather than unsettled.

  • After years of correspondence we are unable to agree with our landlord on how much the lease extension should cost for our flat in Petersham. Does the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal have jurisdiction to calculate the appropriate figures?

    Most certainly. We are happy to put you in touch with a Petersham conveyancing firm who can help.

    An example of a Lease Extension case for a Petersham premises is Ground Floor Flat 91 Bath Road in May 2009. in a case where the freeholder could not be traced, the Brentford County Court ordered that the Lease be surrendered in return for the grant of a new lease of the Premises at a premium determined by the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal. The tribunal concluded that the price payable by the Applicant for the new lease of the premises be £15,900 This case was in relation to 1 flat. The the unexpired term as at the valuation date was 60.45 years.

    When it comes to leasehold conveyancing in Petersham what are the most common lease defects?

    Leasehold conveyancing in Petersham is not unique. All leases are unique and drafting errors can result in certain clauses are erroneous. The following missing provisions could result in a defective lease:

    • Repairing obligations to or maintain elements of the premises
    • A duty to insure the building
    • 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 will have 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. Barclays , Skipton Building Society, and Clydesdale all have very detailed requirements when it comes to what is expected in a lease. If a mortgage lender believes that the lease is defective they may refuse to grant the mortgage, obliging the buyer to pull out.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Petersham