Common questions relating to Sydenham leasehold conveyancing
I am in need of some leasehold conveyancing in Sydenham. Before I get started I want to be sure as to the number of years remaining on the lease.
Assuming the lease is recorded at the land registry - and most are in Sydenham - then the leasehold title will always include the short particulars of the lease, namely the date; the term; and the original parties. From a conveyancing perspective such details then enable any prospective buyer and lender to confirm that any lease they are looking at is the one relevant to that title.For any other purpose, such as confirming how long the term was granted for and calculating what is left, then the register should be sufficient on it's own.
I've found a house that appears to meet my requirements, at a reasonable figure which is making it more attractive. I have subsequently discovered that it's a leasehold rather than freehold. I would have thought that there are particular concerns buying a house with a leasehold title in Sydenham. Conveyancing solicitors have not yet been appointed. Will they explain the issues?
The majority of houses in Sydenham are freehold and not leasehold. In this scenario it’s worth having a local conveyancer used to dealing with such properties who can assist with the conveyancing process. It is clear that you are buying in Sydenham in which case you should be shopping around for a Sydenham conveyancing practitioner and be sure that they are used to transacting on leasehold houses. As a matter of priority you will need to check the number of years remaining. Being a tenant you will not be entirely free to do whatever you want to the property. The lease comes with conditions for example obtaining the landlord’spermission to carry out alterations. It may be necessary to pay a maintenance charge towards the maintenance of the estate where the house is located on an estate. Your conveyancer will advise you fully on all the issues.
My wife and I purchased a leasehold house in Sydenham. Conveyancing and Aldermore mortgage are in place. A letter has just been received from someone saying they have taken over the reversionary interest in the property. It included a demand for arrears of ground rent dating back to 1995. The conveyancing practitioner in Sydenham who previously acted has now retired.Do I pay?
The first thing you should do is contact HMLR to be sure that this person is in fact the registered owner of the freehold reversion. You do not need to incur the fees of a Sydenham conveyancing solicitor to do this as you can do this on the Land Registry website for £3. You should note that regardless, even if this is the rightful freeholder, under the Limitation Act 1980 the limitation period for recovery of ground rent is six years.
I am looking at a two apartments in Sydenham both have in the region of 50 years left on the leases. should I be concerned?
There are no two ways about it. A leasehold apartment in Sydenham is a deteriorating asset as a result of the shortening lease. The closer the lease gets to its expiry date, the more it reduces the marketability of the premises. For most purchasers and banks, leases with less than eighty years become less and less marketable. On a more positive note, leaseholders can extend their leases by serving a Section 42 Notice. One stipulation is that they must have owned the premises for two years (unlike a Section 13 notice for purchasing the freehold, when leaseholders can participate from day one of ownership). When successful, they will have the right to an extension of 90 years to the current term and ground rent is effectively reduced to zero. Before moving forward with a purchase of a residence with a short lease term remaining you should talk to a solicitor specialising in lease extensions and leasehold enfranchisement. We are are happy to put you in touch with Sydenham conveyancing experts who will explain the options available to you during an initial telephone conversation free of charge. A more straightforward and quicker method of extending would be to contact your landlord directly and sound him out on the prospect of extending the lease They may agree to a smaller lump sum and an increase in the ground rent, but to shorter extension terms in return. You need to ensure that the agreed terms represent good long-term value compared with the standard benefits of the Section 42 Notice and that onerous clauses are not inserted into any redrafting of the lease.
I am a negotiator for a reputable estate agency in Sydenham where we have witnessed a few leasehold sales derailed as a result of leases having less than 80 years remaining. I have been given contradictory information from local Sydenham conveyancing firms. Can you shed some light as to whether the vendor of a flat can start the lease extension process for the purchaser on completion of the sale?
Provided that 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 proposed purchaser 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 needs to be completed before, or at the same time as completion of the sale.
An alternative approach is to extend the lease informally by agreement with the landlord 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.
After months of dialogue we simply can't agree with our landlord on how much the lease extension should cost for our flat in Sydenham. Does the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal have jurisdiction to calculate the appropriate figures?
if there is a missing freeholder or where there is disagreement about the premium for a lease extension, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 it is possible to make an application to the First-tier Tribunal (Property Chamber) to determine the premium.
An example of a Lease Extension decision for a Sydenham property is Flat 5 4 Border Crescent in December 2013. the tribunal calculated that premium payable for the acquisition of a lease extension of the subject premises was in the sum of £14,900 (Fourteen thousand, nine hundred pounds). Those advising the applicant were advised to send a copy of the decision and a copy of the new lease with the premium (less the applicants costs as assessed by the Court) to the Croydon County Court (under claim number 3CR01226) for an officer of the Court to execute the new lease on behalf of the absentee landlord who is missing and cannot be traced). This case related to 1 flat. The the number of years remaining on the existing lease(s) was 69 years.