Fixed-fee leasehold conveyancing in St John's Wood:

When it comes to leasehold conveyancing in St John's Wood, you will need to instruct a conveyancing practitioner with leasehold experience. Whether your mortgage company is to be Santander, RBS or Bradford & Bingley be sure to choose a lawyer on their panel. Find a St John's Wood conveyancing lawyer with our search tool

St John's Wood leasehold conveyancing Example Support Desk Enquiries

I today plan to offer on a house that appears to tick a lot of boxes, at a great price which is making it all the more appealing. I have just discovered that the title is leasehold rather than freehold. I would have thought that there are issues buying a leasehold house in St John's Wood. Conveyancing solicitors have not yet been instructed. Will my lawyers set out the risks of buying a leasehold house in St John's Wood ?

The majority of houses in St John's Wood are freehold rather than leasehold. This is one of the situations where having a local conveyancer who is familiar with the area can help the conveyancing process. It is clear that you are purchasing in St John's Wood in which case you should be shopping around for a St John's Wood conveyancing solicitor and check that they are used to dealing with leasehold houses. First you will need to check the number of years remaining. As a lessee you will not be entirely free to do whatever you want with the house. The lease comes with conditions such as requiring the landlord’sconsent to carry out alterations. It may be necessary to pay a service charge towards the upkeep of the communal areas where the property is located on an estate. Your lawyer should advise you fully on all the issues.

Back In 2008, I bought a leasehold house in St John's Wood. Conveyancing and Accord Mortgages Ltd mortgage are in place. A letter has just been received from someone saying they have taken over the reversionary interest in the property. It included a demand for arrears of ground rent dating back to 1998. The conveyancing solicitor in St John's Wood who previously acted has long since retired.Do I pay?

First contact HMLR to make sure that the individual claiming to own the freehold is indeed the new freeholder. It is not necessary to instruct a St John's Wood conveyancing practitioner to do this as you can do this on the Land Registry website for less than a fiver. You should note that in any event, even if this is the rightful landlord, under the Limitation Act 1980 the limitation period for recovery of ground rent is six years.

I am tempted by the attractive purchase price for a two apartments in St John's Wood which have in the region of forty five years unexpired on the lease term. should I be concerned?

There are plenty of short leases in St John's Wood. The lease is a legal document that entitles you to use the premises for a period of time. As a lease shortens the saleability of the lease deteriorate and results in it becoming more expensive to extend the lease. This is why it is advisable to extend the lease term. More often than not it is difficult to sell a property with a short lease because mortgage lenders may be reluctant to lend money on such properties. Lease extension can be a protracted process. We advise that you seek professional assistance from a conveyancer and surveyor with experience in this area

Do you have any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in St John's Wood with the purpose of expediting the sale process?

  • Much of the frustration in leasehold conveyancing in St John's Wood can be reduced where you appoint lawyers the minute your agents start marketing the property and ask them to put together the leasehold documentation which will be required by the buyers solicitors.
  • A minority of St John's Wood leases require Licence to Assign from the landlord. If this applies to your lease, you should notify your estate agents to make sure that the purchasers put in hand financial (bank) and professional references. Any 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 purchasers or their lawyers.
  • If there is a history of any disputes with your freeholder or managing agents it is essential that these are settled prior to the flat being marketed. The purchasers and their solicitors will be warry about purchasing a flat where a dispute is unsettled. You will have to accept that you will have to discharge any arrears of service charge or resolve 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 will still have to reveal particulars of the dispute to the purchasers, but it is clearly preferable to present the dispute as over as opposed to unresolved.
  • If you are supposed to have a share in the Management Company, you should ensure that you have the original share certificate. Arranging a new share certificate can be a time consuming process and delays many a St John's Wood home move. If a duplicate share certificate is necessary, do contact the company officers or managing agents (where relevant) for this at the earliest opportunity.
  • You may think that you are aware of the number of years remaining on your lease but you should double-check by asking your solicitors. A buyer’s conveyancer will be unlikely to recommend their client to where the remaining number of years is under 75 years. It is therefore essential at an as soon as possible that you identify 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.

  • All being well we will complete the disposal of our £425000 apartment in St John's Wood next Friday . The freeholder has quoted £384 for Landlord’s certificate, insurance certificate and previous years statements of service charge. Is it legal for a freeholder to charge exorbitant fees for a flat conveyance in St John's Wood?

    St John's Wood conveyancing on leasehold apartments more often than not requires the buyer’s conveyancer sending questions for the landlord to answer. Although the landlord is not legally bound to respond to such questions the majority will be willing to do so. They are at liberty charge a reasonable administration fee for responding to enquiries or supplying documentation. There is no set fee. The average fee for the information that you are referring to is £350, in some transactions it is in excess of £800. The management information fee demanded by the landlord must be accompanied by a synopsis of entitlements and obligations in respect of administration fees, without which the invoice is technically not due. In reality one has little choice but to pay whatever is requested of you should you wish to sell the property.

    My wife and I have hit a brick wall in negotiating a lease extension in St John's Wood. Can this matter be resolved via the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal?

    if there is a missing landlord or where there is disagreement about the premium for a lease extension, under the relevant legislation you can apply to the First-tier Tribunal (Property Chamber) to determine the sum to be paid.

    An example of a Lease Extension case for a St John's Wood flat is Garden Flat 195 Goldhurst Terrace in May 2012. The Tribunal held in accordance with section 48 and Schedule 13 of the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 that the premium for the extended lease should be £60,855.00. This case related to 1 flat. The unexpired term was 60.16 years.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in St John's Wood