Fixed-fee leasehold conveyancing in Petersham:

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Common questions relating to Petersham leasehold conveyancing

My fiance and I may need to rent out our Petersham basement flat for a while due to taking a sabbatical. We used a Petersham conveyancing firm in 2003 but they have since shut and we did not think at the time seek any advice as to whether the lease prohibits the subletting of the flat. How do we find out?

Notwithstanding that your last Petersham conveyancing lawyer is no longer around you can review your lease to check if you are permitted to let out the property. The accepted inference is that if the deeds are silent, subletting is permitted. There may be a precondition that you need to seek permission from your landlord or some other party before subletting. This means you not allowed to sublet in the absence of first obtaining consent. Such consent should not be unreasonably withheld. If your lease prohibits you from letting out the property you should ask your landlord for their consent.

There are only 68 years unexpired on my flat in Petersham. I need to get lease extension but my landlord is can not be found. What should I do?

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 granted an extra 90 years by the magistrate. However, you will be required to demonstrate that you have used your best endeavours to locate the lessor. On the whole a specialist may be helpful to carry out a search and prepare an expert document to be used as proof that the freeholder can not be located. It is advisable to get professional help from a conveyancer both on proving the landlord’s disappearance and the application to the County Court overseeing Petersham.

I have just started marketing my garden apartment in Petersham.Conveyancing is yet to be initiated but I have just had a yearly service charge invoice – should I leave it to the buyer to sort out?

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 management companies 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. This will smooth the conveyancing process.

Can you provide any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in Petersham with the purpose of speeding up the sale process?

  • Much of the delay in leasehold conveyancing in Petersham can be bypassed where you appoint lawyers as soon as your agents start marketing the property and ask them to collate the leasehold information needed by the purchasers’ conveyancers.
  • Many landlords or Management Companies in Petersham levy fees for supplying management packs for a leasehold property. You or your lawyers should enquire as to the fee that they propose to charge. The management information can be applied for as soon as you have a buyer, thus accelerating the process. The average time it takes to obtain the necessary information is three weeks. It is the most common cause of delay in leasehold conveyancing in Petersham.
  • If you have carried out any alterations to the property would they have required Landlord’s consent? Have you, for example laid down wooden flooring? Most leases in Petersham state that internal structural alterations or installing wooden flooring require a licence from the Landlord acquiescing to such alterations. Where you fail to have the approvals in place you should not communicate with the landlord without checking with your conveyancer in the first instance.
  • If you have had conflict 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 reluctant to purchase a flat where a dispute is unsettled. You may need to swallow your pride and discharge any arrears of service charge or resolve the dispute prior to completion of the sale. It is therefore preferable to have any dispute settled prior to the contract papers being issued to the buyers’ solicitors. You will still have to reveal details of the dispute to the buyers, but it is better to present the dispute as historic rather than unsettled.
  • You may think that you are aware of the number of years remaining on your lease but it would be wise to double-check via your lawyers. A buyer’s conveyancer will not be happy to advise their client to proceed with the purchase of a leasehold property the lease term is less than 75 years. In the circumstances it is essential at an early stage that you identify whether the lease term requires a lease extension. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your property on the market for sale.

  • Our conveyancer has advised that he intends to complete and exchange simultaneously on our sale of a £475000 maisonette in Petersham next Monday . The managing agents has quoted £408 for Landlord’s certificate, insurance certificate and previous years service charge statements. Is it legal for a freeholder to charge exorbitant fees for a leasehold conveyance in Petersham?

    Petersham conveyancing on leasehold maisonettes normally involves the buyer’s lawyer sending questions for the landlord to address. Although the landlord is under no legal obligation to respond to these enquiries most will be content to assist. They are entitled charge a reasonable charge for answering enquiries or supplying documentation. There is no set fee. The average costs for the information that you are referring to is over three hundred pounds, in some cases it is above £800. The management information fee demanded by the landlord must be sent together with a synopsis of entitlements and obligations in respect of administration charges, without which the invoice is not strictly payable. In reality you have no choice but to pay whatever is requested of you if you want to exchange contracts with the buyer.

    After months of dialogue we are unable to agree with our landlord on how much the lease extension should cost for our flat in Petersham. Can we issue an application to the Residential Property Tribunal Service?

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

    An example of a Lease Extension decision 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 related to 1 flat. The unexpired lease term was 60.45 years.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Petersham