Fixed-fee leasehold conveyancing in Raynes Park:

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Questions and Answers: Raynes Park leasehold conveyancing

Having checked my lease I have discovered that there are only Sixty One years left on my lease in Raynes Park. I need to get lease extension but my freeholder is absent. What options are available to me?

On the basis that 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 Court. You will be obliged to demonstrate that you have used your best endeavours to track down the freeholder. On the whole an enquiry agent should be useful to conduct investigations and prepare an expert document to be used as evidence that the landlord is indeed missing. It is wise to seek advice from a property lawyer both on devolving into the landlord’s disappearance and the vesting order request to the County Court overseeing Raynes Park.

I own a leasehold house in Raynes Park. Conveyancing and Accord Mortgages Ltd mortgage organised. 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 1992. The conveyancing solicitor in Raynes Park who acted for me is not around.What should I do?

First make enquiries of the Land Registry to make sure that the individual claiming to own the freehold is in fact the new freeholder. It is not necessary to instruct a Raynes Park conveyancing lawyer to do this as you can do this on the Land Registry website for a few pound. You should note that regardless, even if this is the rightful freeholder, under the Limitation Act 1980 no more than 6 years of rent can be collected.

I am employed by a long established estate agency in Raynes Park where we have experienced a number of leasehold sales derailed due to short leases. I have been given contradictory information from local Raynes Park conveyancing solicitors. Could you shed some light as to whether the seller of a flat can commence the lease extension formalities for the buyer?

As long as the seller has been the owner 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 needs to be completed prior to, or simultaneously with completion of the sale.

An alternative approach is to agree the lease extension with the freeholder 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.

Do you have any advice for leasehold conveyancing in Raynes Park with the purpose of speeding up the sale process?

  • A significant proportion of the frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Raynes Park can be reduced if you appoint lawyers the minute your agents start advertising the property and request that they start to collate the leasehold information which will be required by the buyers conveyancers.
  • If you have carried out any alterations to the premises would they have required Landlord’s consent? In particular have you installed wooden flooring? Raynes Park leases often stipulate that internal structural changes or laying down wooden flooring calls for a licence issued by the Landlord approving such alterations. Where you fail to have the consents in place do not contact the landlord without checking with your lawyer first.
  • Some Raynes Park leases require Licence to Assign from the landlord. If this is the case, it would be prudent to place the estate agents on notice to make sure that the purchasers put in hand financial (bank) and professional references. Any bank reference will need to confirm that the buyers are financially capable of paying 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 purchasers or their lawyers.
  • If you have the benefit of shareholding in the freehold, you should make sure that you are holding the original share document. Obtaining a new share certificate is often a lengthy process and frustrates many a Raynes Park home move. Where a new share certificate is needed, do contact the company officers or managing agents (if relevant) for this at the earliest opportunity.
  • You may think that you are aware of the number of years left on your lease but it would be advisable verify this by asking your conveyancers. A buyer’s lawyer will be unlikely to recommend their client to proceed with the purchase of a leasehold property the lease term is below 80 years. In the circumstances it is important at an as soon as possible that you consider whether the lease for your property needs extending. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your property on the market for sale.

  • If all goes to plan we aim to complete our sale of a £250000 apartment in Raynes Park next Tuesday . The freeholder has quoted £408 for Certificate of Compliance, building insurance schedule and previous years statements of service charge. Is it legal for a freeholder to charge an administration fee for a leasehold conveyance in Raynes Park?

    For the majority of leasehold sales in Raynes Park conveyancing will involve, questions about the management of a building inevitably needing to be answered directly by the freeholder or its agent, this includes :

    • Answering conveyancing due diligence questions
    • Where consent is required before sale in Raynes Park
    • Copies of the building insurance and schedule
    • Deeds of covenant upon sale
    • Registering of the assignment of the change of lessee after a sale
    Your lawyer will have no control over the level of the charges for this information but the average costs for the information for Raynes Park leasehold premises is £350. For Raynes Park conveyancing transactions it is customary for the seller to pay for these costs. The landlord or their agents are under no legal obligation to answer such questions most will be willing to do so - albeit often at exorbitant prices where the fees bear little relation to the work involved. Unfortunately there is no law that requires fixed charges for administrative tasks. Neither is there any legal time frame by which they are required to provide the information.

    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 matters? Can you recommend a Raynes Park conveyancing firm to assist?

    You certainly can. We can put you in touch with a Raynes Park conveyancing firm who can help.

    An example of a Lease Extension decision for a Raynes Park flat is 33 The Maisonettes Alberta Avenue in June 2014. the Tribunal decided that the premium payable for the grant of a new lease be the sum of £20,680 (Twenty Thousand six hundred and eighty pounds). This case related to 1 flat. The the unexpired residue of the current lease was 60.43 years.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Raynes Park