Experts for Leasehold Conveyancing in Ruislip

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Questions and Answers: Ruislip leasehold conveyancing

I've found a house that appears to tick a lot of boxes, at a reasonable price which is making it all the more appealing. I have subsequently found out that the title is leasehold as opposed to freehold. I would have thought that there are issues buying a leasehold house in Ruislip. Conveyancing lawyers have are about to be appointed. Will they explain the issues?

The majority of houses in Ruislip are freehold rather than leasehold. In this scenario it’s worth having a local solicitor used to dealing with such properties who can assist with the conveyancing process. it is apparent that you are purchasing in Ruislip in which case you should be shopping around for a Ruislip conveyancing solicitor and be sure that they are used to advising on leasehold houses. First you will need to check the number of years remaining. As a leaseholder you will not be at liberty to do whatever you want to the property. The lease comes with conditions for example requiring the freeholder’sconsent to conduct changes to the property. It may be necessary to pay a maintenance charge towards the maintenance of the communal areas where the house is part of an estate. Your solicitor should report to you on the legal implications.

My wife and I purchased a leasehold flat in Ruislip. Conveyancing and Halifax mortgage are in place. I have received a letter from someone saying they have taken over the reversionary interest in the property. Attached was a ground rent demand for rent dating back to 1994. The conveyancing practitioner in Ruislip who acted for me is not around.What should I do?

First make enquiries of HMLR to be sure that this person is indeed the registered owner of the freehold reversion. You do not need to incur the fees of a Ruislip conveyancing solicitor to do this as you can do this on the Land Registry website for a few pound. Rest assured that regardless, even if this is the legitimate freeholder, under the Limitation Act 1980 the limitation period for recovery of ground rent is six years.

I am attracted to a couple of apartments in Ruislip which have in the region of forty five years left on the leases. Do I need to be concerned?

There are no two ways about it. A leasehold flat in Ruislip is a wasting asset as a result of the shortening lease. The nearer the lease gets to its expiry date, the more it adversely affects the value of the premises. For most buyers and banks, leases with under 75 years become less and less marketable. 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 a residence 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 Ruislip conveyancing experts who will explain the options available to you during an initial telephone conversation free of charge. A more straightforward and quicker method of extending would be to contact your landlord directly and sound him out on the prospect of extending the lease You may find he or she is happy to negotiate informally and willing to consider your offer straight off, without having to involve anyone else. This will save you time and money and it could help you reach a lower price on the lease. 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 work for a reputable estate agency in Ruislip where we see a number of flat sales derailed as a result of short leases. I have received conflicting advice from local Ruislip conveyancing solicitors. Could you shed some light as to whether the seller of a flat can instigate the lease extension formalities for the purchaser on completion of the sale?

As long as the seller has owned the lease for at least 2 years it is possible, to serve a Section 42 notice to commence 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 to extend their lease. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment needs to be completed before, or simultaneously with completion of the sale.

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 buyer.

Can you provide any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in Ruislip with the purpose of saving time on the sale process?

  • A significant proportion of the frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Ruislip can be reduced where you get in touch lawyers as soon as you market your property and ask them to collate the leasehold information needed by the buyers solicitors.
  • The majority landlords or managing agents in Ruislip levy fees for supplying management packs for a leasehold premises. You or your lawyers should discover 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 receive management information is three weeks. It is the most common cause of delay in leasehold conveyancing in Ruislip.
  • In the event that you altered the property did you need the Landlord’s permission? Have you, for example installed wooden flooring? Ruislip leases often stipulate that internal structural changes or addition of wooden flooring require a licence issued by the Landlord consenting to such alterations. If you dont have the paperwork to hand you should not communicate with the landlord without contacting your lawyer before hand.
  • Some Ruislip leases require Landlord’s consent to the sale and approval of the buyers. If this applies to your lease, it would be prudent to place the estate agents on notice to make sure that the purchasers obtain financial (bank) and professional references. The bank reference will need to confirm that the buyers are financially capable of paying the yearly 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.
  • You believe that you know the number of years left on your lease but it would be advisable double-check by asking your solicitors. A buyer’s lawyer will be unlikely to recommend their client to where the lease term is less than 75 years. In the circumstances it is essential at an as soon as possible that you consider whether the lease term for your property needs extending. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your premises on the market for sale.

  • I inherited a ground flat in Ruislip. Given that I can not reach agreement with the freeholder, can the Leasehold valuation Tribunal determine the sum payable for the purchase of the freehold?

    if there is a absentee landlord or where there is dispute about the premium for a lease extension, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 it is possible to make an application to the LVT to make a decision on the premium.

    An example of a Lease Extension decision for a Ruislip residence is Flat 72 Queens Walk in January 2013. The Tribunals calculated the premium payable to be £22,090. This case affected 1 flat. The unexpired lease term was 53.26 years.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Ruislip