Questions and Answers: Shooter's Hill leasehold conveyancing
I would like to rent out my leasehold apartment in Shooter's Hill. Conveyancing solicitor who did the purchase is retired - so can't ask him. Is permission from the freeholder required?
Some leases for properties in Shooter's Hill do contain a provision to say that subletting is only permitted with prior consent from the landlord. The landlord cannot unreasonably refuse but, in such cases, they would need to see references. Experience dictates that problems are usually caused by unsatisfactory tenants rather than owner-occupiers and for that reason you can expect the freeholder to take up the references and consider them carefully before granting permission.
I only have 72 years remaining on my lease in Shooter's Hill. I now want to get lease extension but my landlord is missing. What are my options?
On the basis that you meet the appropriate requirements, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can submit an application to the County Court for for permission to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will enable the lease to be lengthened by the Court. You will be obliged to demonstrate that you or your lawyers have done all that could be expected to locate the landlord. In some cases a specialist should be helpful to carry out a search and to produce an expert document which can be used as evidence that the landlord is indeed missing. It is wise to seek advice from a conveyancer in relation to proving the landlord’s absence and the application to the County Court covering Shooter's Hill.
I’m about to sell my basement flat in Shooter's Hill.Conveyancing solicitors are to be appointed soon but I have just received a yearly service charge invoice – what should I do?
It best that you 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 until 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. Having a clear account will assist your cause and will leave you no worse off financially.
My wife and I purchased a leasehold flat in Shooter's Hill. Conveyancing and Alliance & Leicester mortgage went though with no issue. A letter has just been received from someone saying they have taken over the freehold. It included a demand for arrears of ground rent dating back to 1995. The conveyancing practitioner in Shooter's Hill who previously acted has long since retired.Any advice?
The first thing you should do is contact HMLR to be sure that this person is in fact the new freeholder. It is not necessary to instruct a Shooter's Hill conveyancing firm to do this as it can be done on-line for £3. You should note that in any event, even if this is the rightful freeholder, under the Limitation Act 1980 no more than 6 years of rent can be collected.
I've recently bought a leasehold property in Shooter's Hill. Am I liable to pay service charges for periods before my ownership?
Where the service charge has already been demanded from the previous lessee and they have not paid you would not usually be personally liable for the arrears. However, your landlord may still be able to take action to forfeit the lease. A critical element of leasehold conveyancing for your conveyancer to be sure to have an up to date clear service charge receipt before completion of your purchase. If you have a mortgage this is likely to be a requirement of your lender.
If you purchase part way through an accounting year you may be liable for charges not yet demanded even if they relate to a period prior to your purchase. In such circumstances your conveyancer would normally arrange for the seller to set aside some money to cover their part of the period (usually called a service charge retention).
Following years of negotiations we are unable to agree with our landlord on how much the lease extension should cost for our flat in Shooter's Hill. Can we issue an application to the Residential Property Tribunal Service?
Absolutely. We are happy to put you in touch with a Shooter's Hill conveyancing firm who can help.
An example of a Lease Extension decision for a Shooter's Hill property is 103a Footscray Road in January 2014. The tribunal determines that the premium payable for the extended lease should be £34,500 according to the expert witness valuation calculation This case was in relation to 1 flat.