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Common questions relating to Thornton Heath leasehold conveyancing

Having had my offer accepted I require leasehold conveyancing in Thornton Heath. Before I get started I want to be sure as to the unexpired term of the lease.

Assuming the lease is recorded at the land registry - and almost all are in Thornton Heath - then the leasehold title will always include the basic details 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.

My wife and I purchased a leasehold house in Thornton Heath. Conveyancing and Virgin Money mortgage organised. A letter has just been received from someone claiming to own the reversionary interest in the property. It included a demand for arrears of ground rent dating back to 1995. The conveyancing practitioner in Thornton Heath who acted for me is not around.What should I do?

First make enquiries of HMLR to be sure that the individual purporting to own the freehold is indeed the new freeholder. It is not necessary to instruct a Thornton Heath conveyancing practitioner to do this as you can do this on the Land Registry website for a few pound. You should note that in any event, even if this is the rightful freeholder, under the Limitation Act 1980 no more than 6 years of rent can be collected.

Can you offer any advice when it comes to appointing a Thornton Heath conveyancing firm to carry out our lease extension conveyancing?

If you are instructing a property lawyer for your lease extension (regardless if they are a Thornton Heath conveyancing firm) it is most important that he or she should be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of work. We recommend that you make enquires with several firms including non Thornton Heath conveyancing practices before you instructing a firm. If the firm is ALEP accredited then so much the better. Some following of questions could be of use:

  • How experienced is the firm with lease extension legislation?
  • If they are not ALEP accredited then why not?

  • Do you have any advice for leasehold conveyancing in Thornton Heath from the point of view of expediting the sale process?

    • A significant proportion of the delay in leasehold conveyancing in Thornton Heath can be avoided if you get in touch lawyers as soon as your agents start advertising the property and request that they start to put together the leasehold information needed by the buyers representatives.
    • The majority landlords or Management Companies in Thornton Heath levy fees for supplying management packs for a leasehold property. You or your lawyers should find out the actual amount of the charges. The management information sought on or before finding a buyer, thus accelerating the process. The typical amount of time it takes to obtain the necessary information is three weeks. It is the most usual cause of frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Thornton Heath.
  • In the event that you altered the property did you need the Landlord’s approval? In particular have you installed wooden flooring? Most leases in Thornton Heath state that internal structural alterations or installing wooden flooring necessitate a licence from the Landlord consenting to such changes. Where you dont have the approvals in place do not communicate with the landlord without checking with your conveyancer in the first instance.
  • If you hold a share in a the Management Company, you should make sure that you hold the original share certificate. Arranging a duplicate share certificate can be a time consuming formality and frustrates many a Thornton Heath conveyancing deal. Where a duplicate share is necessary, do contact the company officers or managing agents (where relevant) for this sooner rather than later.
  • You may think that you are aware of the number of years left on your lease but it would be wise to verify this via your solicitors. A purchaser's conveyancer will be unlikely to recommend their client to to exchange contracts if the remaining number of years is below 80 years. It is therefore important at an as soon as possible that you identify whether the lease term for your property needs extending. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your property on the market for sale.

  • Having spent years of negotiations we cannot agree with our landlord on how much the lease extension should cost for our flat in Thornton Heath. Does the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal have jurisdiction to calculate the appropriate figures?

    You certainly can. We are happy to put you in touch with a Thornton Heath conveyancing firm who can help.

    An example of a Lease Extension case for a Thornton Heath premises is Ground Floor Flat 14 Lodge Road in October 2013. the tribunal held that the price payable for the acquisition of the extended lease of the property should be £12,590 .00 This case affected 1 flat. The remaining number of years on the lease was 69.46 years.

    What are the frequently found defects that you encounter in leases for Thornton Heath properties?

    There is nothing unique about leasehold conveyancing in Thornton Heath. Most leases is drafted differently and legal mistakes in the legal wording can sometimes mean that certain clauses are missing. For example, if your lease is missing any of the following, it could be defective:

    • A provision to repair to or maintain parts of the property
    • Insurance obligations
    • Clauses dealing with recovering service charges for expenditure on the building or common parts.
    • Service charge per centages that don't add up correctly leaving a shortfall

    You may have a problem when selling your property if you have a defective lease as they can affect a potential buyer’s ability to obtain a mortgage. Santander, Coventry Building Society, and Britannia 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 problematic they may refuse to provide security, obliging the purchaser to withdraw.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Thornton Heath