Experts for Leasehold Conveyancing in South Harrow

While any conveyancing practice can theoretically deal with your leasehold conveyancing in South Harrow, your mortgage provider may not be willing to work with them if the firm are not on their list of approved solicitors for conveyancing

South Harrow leasehold conveyancing: Q and A’s

Helen (my wife) and I may need to rent out our South Harrow 1st floor flat temporarily due to taking a sabbatical. We used a South Harrow conveyancing practice in 2004 but they have closed and we did not think at the time seek any advice as to whether the lease prohibits the subletting of the flat. How do we find out?

A small minority of properties in South Harrow do contain a provision to say that subletting is only allowed with permission. The landlord cannot unreasonably withhold but, in such cases, they would need to see references. Experience suggests 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 have recently realised that I have 68 years unexpired on my lease in South Harrow. I now wish to extend my lease but my landlord is absent. What options are available to me?

If you qualify, 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 granted an extra 90 years by the Court. However, you will be required to demonstrate that you have used your best endeavours to track down the freeholder. In some cases a specialist should be helpful to conduct investigations and to produce a report to be used as proof that the landlord can not be located. It is wise to seek advice from a conveyancer in relation to devolving into the landlord’s disappearance and the application to the County Court covering South Harrow.

Due to exchange soon on a garden flat in South Harrow. Conveyancing solicitors inform me that they report fully within the next couple of days. Are there areas in the report that I should be focusing on?

The report on title for your leasehold conveyancing in South Harrow should include some of the following:

  • Are you allowed to have a pet in the flat?
  • An explanation as to the provision in the lease to pay service charges - with regard to both the building, and the more general rights a leaseholder has
  • Whether your lease has a provision for a reserve fund?
  • Changes to the flat (alterations and additions)
  • The landlord’s rights to access the flat you be made aware that your landlord has rights of access and I know how much notice s/he must provide.
  • Whether the landlord has obligations to ensure rights of quiet enjoyment over your property and do you know what it means in practice?
  • What the implications are if you breach a clause of your lease? For a comprehensive list of information to be contained in your report on your leasehold property in South Harrow please enquire of your solicitor in ahead of your conveyancing in South Harrow

  • Can you offer any advice when it comes to appointing a South Harrow conveyancing practice to carry out our lease extension conveyancing?

    If you are instructing a conveyancer for lease extension works (regardless if they are a South Harrow conveyancing practice) it is imperative that they be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of conveyancing. We recommend that you speak with two or three firms including non South Harrow conveyancing practices prior to instructing a firm. If the firm is ALEP accredited then so much the better. Some following of questions could be of use:

    • How many lease extensions have they conducted in South Harrow in the last year?
  • Can they put you in touch with client in South Harrow who can give a testimonial?

  • Do you have any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in South Harrow with the intention of speeding up the sale process?

    • Much of the delay in leasehold conveyancing in South Harrow can be bypassed where you get in touch lawyers as soon as you market your property and request that they start to put together the leasehold documentation needed by the buyers lawyers.
    • If you have carried out any alterations to the property would they have required Landlord’s approval? Have you, for example installed wooden flooring? Most leases in South Harrow state that internal structural changes or installing wooden flooring necessitate a licence issued by the Landlord approving such alterations. Where you fail to have the approvals to hand do not communicate with the landlord without checking with your solicitor in the first instance.
  • A minority of South Harrow leases require Landlord’s consent to the sale and approval of the buyers. If this is the case, you should place the estate agents on notice to make sure that the purchasers put in hand bank and professional references. The bank reference should make it clear that the buyer is able to meet 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 actual amount of the service charge so that they can pass this information on to the buyers or their solicitors.
  • If there is a history of conflict with your freeholder or managing agents it is essential that these are resolved before the property is marketed. The purchasers and their solicitors will be reluctant to purchase a flat where there is an ongoing dispute. You will have to accept that you will have to discharge any arrears of service charge or settle the dispute prior to the buyers completing the purchase. It is therefore preferable to have any dispute settled prior to the contract papers being issued to the buyers’ solicitors. You are still duty bound to disclose particulars of the dispute to the buyers, but it is clearly preferable to present the dispute as over rather than unsettled.
  • You may think that you are aware of the number of years remaining on your lease but you should verify this via your solicitors. A purchaser's lawyer will not be happy to advise their client to to exchange contracts if the remaining number of years is under 75 years. It is therefore important at an as soon as possible that you consider whether the lease requires a lease extension. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your premises on the market for sale.

  • I am the proprietor of a two-bedroom flat in South Harrow. Given that I can not reach agreement with the freeholder, can the Leasehold valuation Tribunal make a decision on the premium payable for the purchase of the freehold?

    Most definitely. We are happy to put you in touch with a South Harrow conveyancing firm who can help.

    An example of a Lease Extension matter before the tribunal for a South Harrow property 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 related to 1 flat. The unexpired term was 79 years.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in South Harrow