Fixed-fee leasehold conveyancing in Stepney:

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Recently asked questions relating to Stepney leasehold conveyancing

There are only 62 years left on my flat in Stepney. I am keen to extend my lease 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 for permission to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will enable the lease to be lengthened by the Court. However, you will be required to prove that you have used your best endeavours to find the lessor. For most situations a specialist may be helpful to try and locate and prepare a report to be accepted by the court as evidence that the landlord is indeed missing. It is advisable to get professional help from a conveyancer both on investigating the landlord’s absence and the application to the County Court covering Stepney.

Due to sign contracts shortly on a leasehold property in Stepney. Conveyancing solicitors have said that they report fully next week. What should I be looking out for?

Your report on title for your leasehold conveyancing in Stepney should include some of the following:

  • You should be sent a copy of the lease
  • The unexpired lease term You should be advised as what happens when the lease ends, and informed of the importance of the 80 year mark
  • Defining your legal entitlements in relation to the communal areas in the building.E.G., does the lease contain a right of way over a path or hallways?
  • Are you allowed to have a pet in the flat?
  • Does the lease prevent you from subletting the property, or having a home office for business
  • Repair and maintenance of the flat
  • What the implications are if you breach a clause of your lease? For a comprehensive list of information to be included in your report on your leasehold property in Stepney please enquire of your lawyer in ahead of your conveyancing in Stepney

  • Back In 2008, I bought a leasehold house in Stepney. Conveyancing and The Mortgage Works mortgage are in place. I have received a letter from someone saying they have taken over the freehold. It included a demand for arrears of ground rent dating back to 1996. The conveyancing practitioner in Stepney who previously acted has now retired.Any advice?

    First contact HMLR to be sure that the individual claiming to own the freehold is in fact the registered owner of the freehold reversion. You do not need to incur the fees of a Stepney conveyancing firm to do this as it can be done on-line for £3. You should note that in any event, even if this is the legitimate freeholder, under the Limitation Act 1980 the limitation period for recovery of ground rent is six years.

    Do you have any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in Stepney with the intention of expediting the sale process?

    • Much of the frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Stepney can be reduced where you instruct lawyers as soon as you market your property and ask them to put together the leasehold documentation which will be required by the purchasers’ conveyancers.
    • In the event that you altered the property did you need the Landlord’s consent? In particular have you laid down wooden flooring? Most leases in Stepney state that internal structural changes or installing wooden flooring require a licence from the Landlord approving such works. Where you fail to have the paperwork to hand you should not contact the landlord without contacting your solicitor first.
  • If you have had any disputes with your landlord or managing agents it is essential that these are resolved prior to the flat being marketed. The buyers and their solicitors will be reluctant to purchase a property where there is an ongoing dispute. You may need to swallow your pride and discharge any arrears of service charge or settle the dispute prior to completion of the sale. 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 details of the dispute to the purchasers, but it is better to reveal the dispute as historic as opposed to unresolved.
  • If you have the benefit of shareholding in the Management Company, you should ensure that you have the original share document. Obtaining a replacement share certificate can be a time consuming formality and slows down many a Stepney conveyancing transaction. If a reissued share is required, do contact the company officers or managing agents (if applicable) for this as soon as possible.
  • You believe that you know the number of years left on your lease but you should verify this by asking your solicitors. A buyer’s lawyer will be unlikely to recommend their client to where the lease term is under 80 years. In the circumstances it is 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 property on the market for sale.

  • All being well we will complete the sale of our £225000 apartment in Stepney in seven days. The landlords agents has quoted £384 for Certificate of Compliance, building insurance schedule and 3 years service charge statements. Is it legal for a freeholder to charge exorbitant fees for a leasehold conveyance in Stepney?

    For most leasehold sales in Stepney conveyancing will involve, questions about the management of a building inevitably needing to be answered directly by the freeholder or its agent, this includes :

    • Completing pre-exchange questions
    • Where consent is required before sale in Stepney
    • 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 Stepney leasehold property is £350. For Stepney 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 answers.

    Following months of negotiations we cannot agree with our landlord on how much the lease extension should cost for our flat in Stepney. Does the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal have jurisdiction to calculate the appropriate figures?

    in cases where there is a absentee freeholder or where there is disagreement about what the lease extension should cost, under the relevant legislation you can apply to the First-tier Tribunal (Property Chamber) to make a decision on the sum to be paid.

    An example of a Freehold Enfranchisement matter before the tribunal for a Stepney property is 12, 14 & 16 Hull Close in May 2010. the Tribunal determined that the premium payable for the acquisition of the freehold to the subject premises was the sum of £18,300 This case was in relation to 3 flats. The remaining number of years on the lease was 101.61 years.