Questions and Answers: Stanmore leasehold conveyancing
I would like to let out my leasehold apartment in Stanmore. Conveyancing solicitor who did the purchase is retired - so can't ask her. Is permission from the freeholder required?
The lease dictates relations between the landlord and you the leaseholder; specifically, it will set out if subletting is not allowed, or permitted but only subject to certain caveats. The rule is that if the lease contains no specific ban or restriction, subletting is allowed. Most leases in Stanmore do not prevent an absolute prevention of subletting – such a clause would adversely affect the market value the flat. Instead, there is usually simply a requirement that the owner notifies the freeholder, possibly sending a copy of the sublease.
I today plan to offer on a house that appears to be perfect, at a reasonable figure which is making it more attractive. I have just been informed that the title is leasehold rather than freehold. I am assuming that there are issues buying a leasehold house in Stanmore. Conveyancing solicitors have are soon to be instructed. Will my lawyers set out the implications of buying a leasehold house in Stanmore ?
The majority of houses in Stanmore are freehold and not leasehold. This is one of the situations where having a local solicitor used to dealing with such properties who can assist with the conveyancing process. it is apparent that you are purchasing in Stanmore in which case you should be looking for a Stanmore conveyancing solicitor and be sure that they are used to advising on leasehold houses. As a matter of priority you will need to check the number of years remaining. Being a lessee you will not be at liberty to do whatever you want to the property. The lease will likely included provisions such as requiring the freeholder’sconsent to conduct changes to the property. It may be necessary to pay a contribution towards the upkeep of the estate where the property is part of an estate. Your solicitor will report to you on the legal implications.
Last month I purchased a leasehold flat in Stanmore. Am I liable to pay service charges relating to a period prior to my ownership?
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).
I work for a reputable estate agent office in Stanmore where we see a few leasehold sales jeopardised as a result of short leases. I have been given inconsistent advice from local Stanmore conveyancing firms. Could you clarify whether the owner of a flat can instigate the lease extension formalities for the buyer?
As long as the seller has owned the lease for at least 2 years it is possible, to serve a Section 42 notice to commence the lease extension process and assign the benefit of the notice to the purchaser. The benefit of this is that the buyer need not have to sit tight for 2 years to extend their lease. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment has to be done prior to, or at the same time as completion of the disposal of the property.
Alternatively, it may be possible to agree the lease extension with the freeholder either before or after the sale. If you are informally negotiating there are no rules and so you cannot insist on the landlord agreeing to grant an extension or transferring the benefit of an agreement to the buyer.
Do you have any advice for leasehold conveyancing in Stanmore from the perspective of speeding up the sale process?
- A significant proportion of the frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Stanmore can be reduced if you instruct lawyers as soon as your agents start marketing the property and ask them to collate the leasehold information needed by the purchasers’ conveyancers.
- The majority landlords or Management Companies in Stanmore charge for providing management packs for a leasehold homes. You or your lawyers should find out the actual amount of the charges. The management information can be applied for on or before finding a buyer, thus accelerating the process. The average time it takes to receive management information is three weeks. It is the most frequent reason for delay in leasehold conveyancing in Stanmore.
I have given up trying to purchase the freehold in Stanmore. Can this matter be resolved via the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal?
You certainly can. We can put you in touch with a Stanmore conveyancing firm who can help.
An example of a Lease Extension case for a Stanmore residence is 27B Hillside in February 2010. the resulting premium, all other aspects of the valuation having been agreed between the parties was set at £8,250 This case was in relation to 1 flat. The unexpired lease term was 70.25 years.