Frequently asked questions relating to Rayners Lane leasehold conveyancing
I today plan to offer on a house that seems to tick a lot of boxes, at a great figure which is making it more attractive. I have just been informed that it's a leasehold rather than freehold. I would have thought that there are issues purchasing a house with a leasehold title in Rayners Lane. Conveyancing advisers have are about to be appointed. Will they explain the issues?
Most houses in Rayners Lane are freehold rather than leasehold. This is one of the situations where having a local solicitor who is familiar with the area can help the conveyancing process. It is clear that you are purchasing in Rayners Lane in which case you should be looking for a Rayners Lane conveyancing practitioner and be sure that they are used to advising on leasehold houses. As a matter of priority you will need to check the number of years remaining. As a leaseholder you will not be entirely free to do whatever you want with the house. The lease will likely included provisions such as obtaining the freeholder’spermission to conduct changes to the property. You may also be required to pay a maintenance charge towards the upkeep of the communal areas where the house is part of an estate. Your lawyer should report to you on the legal implications.
Back In 2005, I bought a leasehold flat in Rayners Lane. Conveyancing and HSBC Bank mortgage are in place. A letter has just been received from someone claiming to own the freehold. Attached was a demand for arrears of ground rent dating back to 1993. The conveyancing practitioner in Rayners Lane who acted for me is not around.What should I do?
First make enquiries of the Land Registry to be sure that this person is indeed the new freeholder. There is no need to instruct a Rayners Lane conveyancing lawyer to do this as it can be done on-line for a few pound. Rest assured that regardless, even if this is the legitimate landlord, under the Limitation Act 1980 the limitation period for recovery of ground rent is six years.
I work for a busy estate agency in Rayners Lane where we have witnessed a number of flat sales jeopardised as a result of short leases. I have been given contradictory information from local Rayners Lane conveyancing firms. Please can you shed some light as to whether the owner of a flat can start the lease extension formalities for the buyer?
As long as the seller has owned the lease for at least 2 years it is possible, to serve a Section 42 notice to kick-start the lease extension process and assign the benefit of the notice to the purchaser. The benefit of this is that the proposed purchaser need not have to wait 2 years for a lease extension. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment has to be done before, or at the same time as completion of the disposal of the property.
An alternative approach is to extend the lease informally by agreement with the landlord 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.
What advice can you give us when it comes to appointing a Rayners Lane conveyancing firm to deal with our lease extension?
If you are instructing a solicitor for lease extension works (regardless if they are a Rayners Lane conveyancing firm) it is essential 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 Rayners Lane conveyancing practices prior to instructing a firm. If the firm is ALEP accredited then that’s a bonus. Some following of questions could be helpful:
- What volume of lease extensions has the firm carried out in Rayners Lane in the last year?
Can you provide any advice for leasehold conveyancing in Rayners Lane with the intention of saving time on the sale process?
- Much of the delay in leasehold conveyancing in Rayners Lane can be avoided where you get in touch lawyers as soon as your agents start advertising the property and request that they start to put together the leasehold information needed by the purchasers’ solicitors.
- If you have carried out any alterations to the residence would they have required Landlord’s consent? In particular have you laid down wooden flooring? Rayners Lane leases often stipulate that internal structural alterations or laying down wooden flooring calls for a licence from the Landlord acquiescing to such works. If you fail to have the paperwork in place do not contact the landlord without contacting your conveyancer before hand.
I am the leaseholder of a first floor flat in Rayners Lane. In the absence of agreement between myself and the landlord, can the Leasehold valuation Tribunal determine the premium payable for a lease extension?
Absolutely. We are happy to put you in touch with a Rayners Lane conveyancing firm who can help.
An example of a Lease Extension decision for a Rayners Lane premises is GFF 1 Holyrood Avenue in May 2014. The Tenant wished to acquire a new (extended) lease and applied to the Willesden County Court who granted a vesting order on 20* March2013. The Tribunal decied that the premium to be paid was £9,062 This case affected 1 flat. The the unexpired residue of the current lease was 79 years.