Leasehold Conveyancing in St John's Wood - Get a Quote from the leasehold experts approved by your lender

While any conveyancing practice can theoretically handle your leasehold conveyancing in St John's Wood, your mortgage provider may unwilling to work with them if the firm are not on their list of approved solicitors for conveyancing

St John's Wood leasehold conveyancing Example Support Desk Enquiries

My fiance and I may need to sub-let our St John's Wood basement flat for a while due to taking a sabbatical. We used a St John's Wood conveyancing firm in 2002 but they have since shut and we did not think at the time get any advice as to whether the lease allows us to sublet. How do we find out?

Even though your last St John's Wood conveyancing lawyer is no longer around you can check your lease to check if you are permitted to let out the apartment. The accepted inference is that if the lease is silent, subletting is allowed. Quite often there is a prerequisite that you need to obtain consent from your landlord or some other party in advance of subletting. This means that you cannot sublet in the absence of first obtaining permission. Such consent should not be unreasonably turned down. If the lease does not allow you to sublet you will need to ask your landlord if they are willing to waive this restriction.

There are only Seventy years left on my lease in St John's Wood. I need to get lease extension but my freeholder 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 apply to the County Court for an order to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will mean that your lease can be lengthened by the magistrate. However, you will be required to prove that you have made all reasonable attempts to locate the freeholder. On the whole an enquiry agent should be useful to try and locate and to produce a report to be used as evidence that the landlord is indeed missing. It is wise to seek advice from a solicitor both on proving the landlord’s absence and the application to the County Court covering St John's Wood.

Last month I purchased a leasehold flat in St John's Wood. Do I have any liability for service charges relating to a period prior to completion of my purchase?

Where the service charge has already been demanded from the previous owner 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. It is an essential part 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).

Do you have any advice for leasehold conveyancing in St John's Wood from the perspective of expediting the sale process?

  • A significant proportion of the frustration in leasehold conveyancing in St John's Wood can be avoided if you appoint lawyers as soon as you market your property and request that they start to put together the leasehold documentation needed by the buyers conveyancers.
  • Many freeholders or managing agents in St John's Wood charge for supplying management packs for a leasehold property. You or your lawyers should discover the actual amount of the charges. The management information can be applied for as soon as you have a buyer, thus accelerating the process. The average time it takes to obtain the necessary information is three weeks. It is the most common cause of frustration in leasehold conveyancing in St John's Wood.
  • In the event that you altered the property did you need the Landlord’s consent? In particular have you installed wooden flooring? St John's Wood leases often stipulate that internal structural changes or installing wooden flooring necessitate a licence from the Landlord approving such alterations. If you fail to have the approvals in place do not contact the landlord without contacting your lawyer before hand.
  • If you have the benefit of shareholding in the freehold, you should make sure that you have the original share certificate. Organising a replacement share certificate is often a time consuming formality and delays many a St John's Wood home move. If a new share certificate is necessary, you should approach the company officers or managing agents (where relevant) for this as soon as possible.
  • You may think that you are aware of the number of years left on your lease but it would be wise to double-check via your conveyancers. A buyer’s conveyancer will be unlikely to recommend their client to proceed with the purchase of a leasehold property the remaining number of years is less than 80 years. It is therefore essential at an early stage that you identify whether the lease term for your property needs extending. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your property on the market for sale.

  • Completion in due on the sale of our £375000 flat in St John's Wood next Friday . The managing agents has quoted £336 for Certificate of Compliance, insurance certificate and previous years service charge statements. Is the landlord entitled to charge an administration fee for a leasehold conveyance in St John's Wood?

    For the majority of leasehold sales in St John's Wood conveyancing will involve, queries regarding the management of a building inevitably needing to be answered directly by the freeholder or its agent, this includes :

    • Completing conveyancing due diligence questions
    • Where consent is required before sale in St John's Wood
    • Supplying insurance information
    • Deeds of covenant upon sale
    • Registering of the assignment of the change of lessee after a sale
    Your conveyancer will have no control over the level of the charges for this information but the average costs for the information for St John's Wood leasehold premises is £350. For St John's Wood conveyancing transactions it is customary for the seller to pay for these costs. The landlord or their agents are under no legal obligation to answer such questions most will be willing to do so - albeit often at exorbitant prices where the fees bear little relation to the work involved. Unfortunately there is no law that requires fixed charges for administrative tasks. Neither is there any legal time frame by which they are obliged to provide the information.

    I am the registered owner of a second floor flat in St John's Wood. In the absence of agreement between myself and the landlord, can the Leasehold valuation Tribunal determine the sum due for a lease extension?

    You certainly can. We are happy to put you in touch with a St John's Wood conveyancing firm who can help.

    An example of a Lease Extension case for a St John's Wood premises 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 was in relation to 1 flat. The the unexpired residue of the current lease was 60.16 years.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in St John's Wood