Fixed-fee leasehold conveyancing in Turnpike Lane:

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Questions and Answers: Turnpike Lane leasehold conveyancing

I have just started marketing my ground floor flat in Turnpike Lane.Conveyancing solicitors are to be appointed soon but I have just had a half-yearly maintenance charge demand – should I leave it to the buyer to sort out?

It best that you clear the service charge as normal because all ground rent and service charges will be apportioned on completion, so you will be reimbursed by the buyer for the period running from after the completion date to the next payment date. Most management companies will not acknowledge the buyer until the service charges have been paid and are up to date so it is important for both buyer and seller for the seller to show that they are up to date. Having a clear account will assist your cause and will leave you no worse off financially.

Back In 2007, I bought a leasehold house in Turnpike Lane. Conveyancing and Platform Home Loans Ltd mortgage went though with no issue. A letter has just been received from someone claiming to own the freehold. Attached was a demand for arrears of ground rent dating back to 1992. The conveyancing solicitor in Turnpike Lane who previously acted has long since retired.Do I pay?

First make enquiries of the Land Registry to be sure that this person is in fact the registered owner of the freehold reversion. It is not necessary to incur the fees of a Turnpike Lane conveyancing solicitor to do this as it can be done on-line for less than a fiver. You should note that regardless, even if this is the rightful landlord, under the Limitation Act 1980 no more than 6 years of rent can be collected.

Last month I purchased a leasehold property in Turnpike Lane. 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 lessee and they have not paid you would not usually be personally liable for the arrears. Strange as it may seem, your landlord may still be able to take action to forfeit the lease. A critical element of leasehold conveyancing for your conveyancer to be sure 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).

Do you have any advice for leasehold conveyancing in Turnpike Lane with the purpose of saving time on the sale process?

  • Much of the delay in leasehold conveyancing in Turnpike Lane can be reduced where you get in touch lawyers the minute you market your property and ask them to collate the leasehold information needed by the buyers solicitors.
  • The majority freeholders or Management Companies in Turnpike Lane charge for providing management packs for a leasehold premises. You or your lawyers should discover the fee that they propose to charge. The management information sought as soon as you have a buyer, thus accelerating the process. The average time it takes to obtain the necessary information is three weeks. It is the most usual cause of frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Turnpike Lane.
  • In the event that you altered the property did you need the Landlord’s consent? In particular have you installed wooden flooring? Turnpike Lane leases often stipulate that internal structural alterations or addition of wooden flooring necessitate a licence from the Landlord consenting to such works. Where you fail to have the approvals in place you should not contact the landlord without contacting your lawyer in the first instance.
  • Some Turnpike Lane leases require Licence to Assign from the landlord. If this applies to your lease, you should notify your estate agents to make sure that the purchasers obtain bank and professional references. Any bank reference should make it clear that the buyer is able to meet the yearly 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 buyers or their solicitors.
  • You may think that you are aware of the number of years left on your lease but it would be advisable double-check via your lawyers. A purchaser's conveyancer will be unlikely to recommend their client to where the remaining number of years is below 80 years. It is therefore essential at an early stage that you identify whether the lease for your property needs extending. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your property on the market for sale.

  • I am the registered owner of a garden flat in Turnpike Lane. Given that I can not reach agreement with the freeholder, can the Leasehold valuation Tribunal determine the premium due for the purchase of the freehold?

    Most certainly. We can put you in touch with a Turnpike Lane conveyancing firm who can help.

    An example of a Lease Extension matter before the tribunal for a Turnpike Lane premises is First Floor Flat 109 Lyndhurst Road in May 2010. Following a vesting order by Edmonton County Court on 29th October 2009 the Tribunal decided on a figure of £5,012 for a lease extension. This case related to 1 flat. The remaining number of years on the lease was 81.79 years.

    What makes a Turnpike Lane lease defective?

    Leasehold conveyancing in Turnpike Lane is not unique. Most leases are individual and drafting errors can result in certain clauses are not included. For example, if your lease is missing any of the following, it could be defective:

    • Repairing obligations to or maintain parts of the building
    • Insurance obligations
    • A provision for the recovery of money spent for the benefit of another party.
    • Service charge per centages that don't add up correctly leaving a shortfall

    A defective lease will likely cause problems when trying to sell a property as they can affect a potential buyer’s ability to obtain a mortgage. Accord Mortgages Ltd, The Mortgage Works, and Platform Home Loans Ltd all have express 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 grant the mortgage, obliging the purchaser to withdraw.