Frequently asked questions relating to Walthamstow leasehold conveyancing
I’m about to sell my 2 bed apartment in Walthamstow.Conveyancing is yet to be initiated but I have just received a quarterly service charge invoice – Do I pay up?
Your conveyancing lawyer is likely to suggest that you should discharge the invoice 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.
I've found a house that appears to meet my requirements, at a reasonable figure which is making it more attractive. I have just been informed that the title is leasehold as opposed to freehold. I would have thought that there are issues purchasing a house with a leasehold title in Walthamstow. Conveyancing solicitors have not yet been instructed. Will they explain the issues?
Most houses in Walthamstow are freehold and not leasehold. This is one of the situations where having a local solicitor used to dealing with such properties who can assist with the conveyancing process. it is apparent that you are purchasing in Walthamstow so you should seriously consider shopping around for a Walthamstow conveyancing solicitor and be sure that they have experience in transacting on leasehold houses. As a matter of priority you will need to check the unexpired lease term. Being a lessee you will not be at liberty to do whatever you want with the house. The lease will likely included provisions such as requiring the freeholder’sconsent to carry out alterations. It may be necessary to pay a service charge towards the upkeep of the communal areas where the house is located on an estate. Your lawyer will report to you on the legal implications.
I am looking at a couple of flats in Walthamstow which have approximately 50 years left on the leases. Should I regard a short lease as a deal breaker?
There are plenty of short leases in Walthamstow. The lease is a right to use the property for a prescribed time frame. As a lease shortens the marketability of the lease reduces and results in it becoming more costly to acquire a lease extension. This is why it is generally wise to extend the lease term. More often than not it is difficulties arise selling premises with a short lease because mortgage lenders less inclined to grant a loan on properties of this type. Lease enfranchisement can be a difficult process. We advise that you seek professional assistance from a solicitor and surveyor with experience in this area
I've recently bought a leasehold flat in Walthamstow. Am I liable to pay service charges for periods before completion of my purchase?
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. 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).
I am a negotiator for a long established estate agency in Walthamstow where we see a few leasehold sales put at risk as a result of short leases. I have received contradictory information from local Walthamstow conveyancing solicitors. Can you clarify whether the vendor of a flat can instigate the lease extension formalities for the buyer?
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. The benefit of this is that the proposed purchaser can avoid having to sit tight for 2 years for a lease extension. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment needs to be completed before, 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 buyer.
I have attempted and failed to negotiate with my landlord for a lease extension without success. Can the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal adjudicate on such issues? Can you recommend a Walthamstow conveyancing firm to help?
Most definitely. We are happy to put you in touch with a Walthamstow conveyancing firm who can help.
An example of a Freehold Enfranchisement matter before the tribunal for a Walthamstow residence is 12 Nutfield Road in July 2014. the Tribunal judged that the price to be paid by the applicants for the freehold interest should be £19,572 This case affected 2 flats. The unexpired term was 72.02 years.