Streatham leasehold conveyancing: Q and A’s
Expecting to exchange soon on a basement flat in Streatham. Conveyancing lawyers inform me that they report fully within the next couple of days. Are there areas in the report that I should be focusing on?
Your report on title for your leasehold conveyancing in Streatham should include some of the following:
- The length of the lease term You should be advised as what happens when the lease ends, and informed of the importance of the 80 year mark
I today plan to offer on a house that appears to tick a lot of boxes, at a reasonable price which is making it more attractive. I have since found out that the title is leasehold as opposed to freehold. I am assuming that there are issues buying a leasehold house in Streatham. Conveyancing solicitors have not yet been instructed. Will my lawyers set out the risks of buying a leasehold house in Streatham ?
The majority of houses in Streatham are freehold and not 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 apparent that you are purchasing in Streatham so you should seriously consider looking for a Streatham conveyancing practitioner and be sure that they have experience in dealing with leasehold houses. As a matter of priority you will need to check the unexpired lease term. Being a leaseholder you will not be at liberty to do whatever you want to the property. The lease comes with conditions such as requiring the landlord’spermission to carry out alterations. It may be necessary to pay a maintenance charge towards the maintenance of the communal areas where the property is part of an estate. Your conveyancer should appraise you on the various issues.
Last month I purchased a leasehold house in Streatham. 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 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 am a negotiator for a reputable estate agency in Streatham where we have witnessed a number of flat sales put at risk due to short leases. I have been given contradictory information from local Streatham conveyancing firms. Can you clarify whether the vendor of a flat can instigate the lease extension process for the purchaser on completion of the sale?
Provided that the seller has been the owner 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. This means that the proposed purchaser need not have to wait 2 years for a lease extension. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment has to be done before, 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.
I am the leaseholder of a basement flat in Streatham. Given that I can not reach agreement with the landlord, can the Leasehold valuation Tribunal determine the amount payable for the purchase of the freehold?
Absolutely. We can put you in touch with a Streatham conveyancing firm who can help.
An example of a Lease Extension decision for a Streatham flat is Flat 12, Newlands Court Streatham Common North in May 2012. the decision of the Tribunal was that the premium payable by the Applicants to the Respondent for the new lease of the Premises be £70,140. This case affected 1 flat. The the unexpired residue of the current lease was 23.25 years.
When it comes to leasehold conveyancing in Streatham what are the most frequent lease problems?
There is nothing unique about leasehold conveyancing in Streatham. Most leases are individual and drafting errors can result in certain sections are missing. The following missing provisions could result in a defective lease:
- Repairing obligations to or maintain parts of the building
- A duty to insure the building
- Clauses dealing with recovering service charges for expenditure on the building or common parts.
- 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. Halifax, Skipton Building Society, and Barclays Direct all have express requirements when it comes to what is expected in a lease. If a mortgage lender believes that the lease does not cover certain provisions they may refuse to provide security, obliging the buyer to withdraw.