Recently asked questions relating to Southfields leasehold conveyancing
Estate agents have just been given the go-ahead to market my ground floor apartment in Southfields.Conveyancing is yet to be initiated but I have just had a quarterly maintenance charge demand – should I leave it to the buyer to sort out?
The sensible thing to do is 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 unless 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.
I own a leasehold house in Southfields. Conveyancing and Skipton Building Society mortgage went though with no issue. I have received a letter from someone claiming to own the freehold. Attached was a demand for arrears of ground rent dating back to 1998. The conveyancing solicitor in Southfields who previously acted has long since retired.What should I do?
The first thing you should do is make enquiries of HMLR to be sure that the individual claiming to own the freehold is in fact the new freeholder. You do not need to incur the fees of a Southfields conveyancing lawyer 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 rightful freeholder, under the Limitation Act 1980 no more than 6 years of rent can be collected.
Last month I purchased a leasehold house in Southfields. Do I have any liability for service charges for periods before my ownership?
In a situation 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. Strange as it may seem, your landlord may still be able to take action to forfeit the lease. A critical element of leasehold conveyancing for your conveyancer to ensure 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).
What advice can you give us when it comes to choosing a Southfields conveyancing firm to deal with our lease extension?
If you are instructing a property lawyer for your lease extension (regardless if they are a Southfields conveyancing firm) it is imperative that they be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of conveyancing. We advise that you talk with two or three firms including non Southfields conveyancing practices prior to instructing a firm. Where the conveyancing practice is ALEP accredited then that’s a bonus. Some following of questions could be useful:
- If the firm is not ALEP accredited then why not?
I inherited a ground floor flat in Southfields. Given that I can not reach agreement with the landlord, can the Leasehold valuation Tribunal make a decision on the premium payable for the purchase of the freehold?
Most certainly. We can put you in touch with a Southfields conveyancing firm who can help.
An example of a Lease Extension decision for a Southfields premises is 83 Balvernie Grove in February 2012. The Tribunal assessed the price to be paid by the leaseholder to the freeholder for the lease extension pursuant to section 48 of the Leasehold Reform Housing & Urban Development Act 1993 should be£16,603.00 This case affected 1 flat. The unexpired lease term was 69.32 years.
What makes a Southfields lease unmortgageable?
There is nothing unique about leasehold conveyancing in Southfields. All leases is drafted differently and legal mistakes in the legal wording can sometimes mean that certain sections are missing. The following missing provisions could result in a defective lease:
- Repairing obligations to or maintain parts of the property
- A duty to insure the building
- A provision for the recovery of money spent for the benefit of another party.
- Maintenance charge proportions which don’t add up to the correct percentage
A defective lease will likely cause problems when trying to sell a property primarily because it impacts on the ability to obtain a mortgage on the property. Birmingham Midshires, The Mortgage Works, and Britannia all have express requirements when it comes to what is expected in a lease. If a mortgage lender believes that the lease is problematic they may refuse to grant the mortgage, forcing the purchaser to pull out.