Quality lawyers for Leasehold Conveyancing in Surbiton

While any conveyancing practice can theoretically deal with your leasehold conveyancing in Surbiton, your mortgage provider may unwilling to work with them if the firm are not on their list of approved solicitors for conveyancing

Questions and Answers: Surbiton leasehold conveyancing

I want to rent out my leasehold flat in Surbiton. Conveyancing solicitor who did the purchase is retired - so can't ask him. Do I need to ask my freeholder for permission?

Your lease dictates the relationship between the landlord and you the flat owner; specifically, it will set out if subletting is prohibited, 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 Surbiton do not contain strict prohibition on subletting – such a provision would adversely affect the market value the flat. Instead, there is usually simply a requirement that the owner notifies the freeholder, possibly sending a duplicate of the tenancy agreement.

Looking forward to exchange soon on a leasehold property in Surbiton. Conveyancing lawyers assured me that they will have a report out to me on Monday. What should I be looking out for?

The report on title for your leasehold conveyancing in Surbiton should include some of the following:

  • Details of the parties to the lease, for example these could be the leaseholder (you), head lessor, landlord
  • The physical extent of the premises. This will be the flat itself but could also include a loft or basement if applicable.
  • Whether the lease restricts you from letting out the property, or working from home
  • You must be told what constitutes a Nuisance in the lease
  • I don't know whether the lease allows me to alter or improve anything in the flat - you should know whether it applies to all alterations or just structural alteration, and whether consent is required
  • The landlord’s obligations to repair and maintain the building. It is important that you know who is responsible for the repair and maintenance of every part of the building
  • What options are open to you if a neighbour is in violation of a provision in their lease? For a comprehensive list of information to be included in your report on your leasehold property in Surbiton please enquire of your conveyancer in ahead of your conveyancing in Surbiton

  • I work for a busy estate agency in Surbiton where we have experienced a number of leasehold sales put at risk as a result of leases having less than 80 years remaining. I have been given contradictory information from local Surbiton conveyancing solicitors. Please can you clarify whether the seller of a flat can instigate the lease extension formalities for the purchaser on completion of the sale?

    As long as the seller has owned the lease for at least 2 years it is possible, to serve a Section 42 notice to start the lease extension process and assign the benefit of the notice to the purchaser. This means that the buyer 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 prior to, or simultaneously with completion of the sale.

    An alternative approach is 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 purchaser.

    Can you provide any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in Surbiton with the purpose of expediting the sale process?

    • Much of the delay in leasehold conveyancing in Surbiton can be bypassed if you get in touch lawyers the minute your agents start marketing the property and ask them to collate the leasehold documentation which will be required by the buyers representatives.
    • A minority of Surbiton leases require Landlord’s consent to the sale and approval of the buyers. If this is the case, it would be prudent to notify your estate agents to make sure that the purchasers put in hand bank and professional references. The bank reference should make it clear that the buyer is able to meet the annual 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 actual amount of the service charge so that they can pass this information on to the purchasers or their solicitors.
  • If there is a history of any disputes with your freeholder or managing agents it is essential that these are settled before the property is put on the market. The purchasers and their solicitors will be concerned about purchasing a flat where there is a current dispute. You may have to bite the bullet and pay any arrears of service charge or settle the dispute prior to completion of the sale. It is therefore preferable to have any dispute settled ahead of the contract papers being issued to the buyers’ solicitors. You are still duty bound to disclose particulars of the dispute to the purchasers, but it is better to reveal the dispute as over as opposed to unresolved.
  • If you have the benefit of shareholding in the Management Company, you should make sure that you have the original share certificate. Arranging a new share certificate can be a time consuming formality and delays many a Surbiton home move. If a duplicate share certificate is needed, you should approach the company director and secretary or managing agents (where applicable) for this sooner rather than later.
  • You may think that you are aware of the number of years remaining on your lease but it would be advisable double-check via your conveyancers. A purchaser's lawyer will be unlikely to recommend their client to where the lease term is below 75 years. In the circumstances it is important at an as soon as possible that you consider whether the lease for your property needs extending. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your home on the market for sale.

  • I inherited a first floor flat in Surbiton. In the absence of agreement between myself and the freeholder, can the Leasehold valuation Tribunal make a decision on the sum payable for a lease extension?

    in cases where there is a absentee freeholder or if there is disagreement about the premium for a lease extension, under the relevant legislation it is possible to make an application to the LVT to make a decision on the sum to be paid.

    An example of a Lease Extension decision for a Surbiton property is Flat D 15 Claremont Gardens in September 2013. TheTribunal determined in accordance with section48 and Schedule13 of the Leasehold Reform,Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 that the premium for the extended lease should be fourteen thousand one hundred and eighty seven pounds (£14,187.00) This case was in relation to 1 flat.

    What are the common problems that you witness in leases for Surbiton properties?

    There is nothing unique about leasehold conveyancing in Surbiton. All leases are unique and legal mistakes in the legal wording can sometimes mean that certain clauses are erroneous. The following missing provisions could result in a defective lease:

    • A provision to repair 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. Barclays , Leeds Building Society, and Clydesdale all have very detailed requirements when it comes to what is expected in a lease. Where a lender has been advised by their lawyers that the lease is defective they may refuse to provide security, obliging the buyer to withdraw.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Surbiton