Quality lawyers for Leasehold Conveyancing in Rotherhithe

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Frequently asked questions relating to Rotherhithe leasehold conveyancing

Having had my offer accepted I require leasehold conveyancing in Rotherhithe. Before diving in I want to be sure as to the number of years remaining on the lease.

Assuming the lease is recorded at the land registry - and almost all are in Rotherhithe - then the leasehold title will always include the basic details of the lease, namely the date; the term; and the original parties. From a conveyancing perspective such details then enable any prospective buyer and lender to confirm that any lease they are looking at is the one relevant to that title.For any other purpose, such as confirming how long the term was granted for and calculating what is left, then the register should be sufficient on it's own.

My wife and I purchased a leasehold flat in Rotherhithe. Conveyancing and Chelsea Building Society mortgage are in place. A letter has just been received from someone claiming to own the reversionary interest in the property. Attached was a ground rent demand for rent dating back to 1997. The conveyancing solicitor in Rotherhithe who acted for me is not around.What should I do?

First make enquiries of HMLR to be sure that the individual claiming to own the freehold is indeed the registered owner of the freehold reversion. You do not need to instruct a Rotherhithe conveyancing practitioner to do this as it can be done on-line for less than a fiver. 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 am attracted to a two maisonettes in Rotherhithe both have about fifty years remaining on the lease term. should I be concerned?

There are no two ways about it. A leasehold apartment in Rotherhithe is a wasting asset as a result of the shortening lease. The closer the lease gets to zero years unexpired, the more it adversely affects the salability of the property. For most buyers and banks, leases with less than eighty years become less and less attractive. On a more positive note, leaseholders can extend their leases by serving a Section 42 Notice. One stipulation is that they must have owned the premises for two years (unlike a Section 13 notice for purchasing the freehold, when leaseholders can participate from day one of ownership). When successful, they will have the right to an extension of 90 years to the current term and ground rent is effectively reduced to zero. Before moving forward with a purchase of property with a short lease term remaining you should talk to a solicitor specialising in lease extensions and leasehold enfranchisement. We are are happy to put you in touch with Rotherhithe conveyancing experts who will explain the options available to you during an initial telephone conversation free of charge. More often than not it is possible to negotiate informally with the freeholder to extend the lease They may agree to a smaller lump sum and an increase in the ground rent, but to shorter extension terms in return. You need to ensure that the agreed terms represent good long-term value compared with the standard benefits of the Section 42 Notice and that onerous clauses are not inserted into any redrafting of the lease.

I am employed by a busy estate agent office in Rotherhithe where we see a few leasehold sales put at risk as a result of short leases. I have been given conflicting advice from local Rotherhithe conveyancing firms. Please can you confirm whether the vendor of a flat can initiate the lease extension formalities for the buyer?

Provided that the seller has been the owner for at least 2 years it is possible, to serve a Section 42 notice to start the lease extension process and assign the benefit of the notice to the purchaser. The benefit of this is that the proposed purchaser can avoid having to sit tight for 2 years for a lease extension. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment needs to be completed 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.

I am the proprietor of a second floor flat in Rotherhithe. Given that I can not reach agreement with the freeholder, can the Leasehold valuation Tribunal determine the premium payable for the purchase of the freehold?

Where there is a absentee freeholder or if there is disagreement about what the lease extension should cost, under the relevant statutes it is possible to make an application to the LVT to arrive at the premium.

An example of a Freehold Enfranchisement matter before the tribunal for a Rotherhithe flat is 12, 14 & 16 Hull Close in May 2010. the Tribunal determined that the premium payable for the acquisition of the freehold to the subject premises was the sum of £18,300 This case was in relation to 3 flats. The the unexpired residue of the current lease was 101.61 years.

What makes a Rotherhithe lease problematic?

There is nothing unique about leasehold conveyancing in Rotherhithe. All leases are individual and legal mistakes in the legal wording can result in certain clauses are not included. For example, if your lease is missing any of the following, it could be defective:

  • A provision to repair to or maintain parts of the building
  • Insurance obligations
  • 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

A defective lease can cause problems when trying to sell a property as they can affect a potential buyer’s ability to obtain a mortgage. Barclays , Skipton Building Society, and Clydesdale all have express 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, forcing the purchaser to withdraw.