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Welling leasehold conveyancing Example Support Desk Enquiries

Having checked my lease I have discovered that there are only Fifty years remaining on my lease in Welling. I now want to extend my lease but my freeholder is can not be found. What options are available to me?

If you qualify, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can submit an application to the County Court for for permission to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will enable the lease to be granted an extra 90 years by the magistrate. You will be obliged to demonstrate that you or your lawyers have used your best endeavours to locate the landlord. For most situations an enquiry agent may be useful to try and locate and prepare a report which can be used as evidence that the landlord is indeed missing. It is wise to seek advice from a solicitor in relation to devolving into the landlord’s disappearance and the application to the County Court overseeing Welling.

I have just appointed agents to market my 2 bed flat in Welling.Conveyancing is yet to be initiated but I have just had a half-yearly maintenance charge invoice – Do I pay up?

It best that you 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. This will smooth the conveyancing process.

I today plan to offer on a house that seems to be perfect, at a reasonable price which is making it more attractive. I have just been informed that it's a leasehold as opposed to freehold. I would have thought that there are particular concerns purchasing a house with a leasehold title in Welling. Conveyancing solicitors have not yet been instructed. Will they explain the issues?

The majority of houses in Welling are freehold rather than leasehold. In this scenario it’s worth having a local conveyancer used to dealing with such properties who can help the conveyancing process. It is clear that you are purchasing in Welling so you should seriously consider looking for a Welling conveyancing solicitor and check that they have experience in advising on leasehold houses. First you will need to check the number of years remaining. Being a leaseholder you will not be entirely free to do whatever you want with the house. The lease comes with conditions for example requiring the landlord’sconsent to carry out changes to the property. It may be necessary to pay a contribution towards the upkeep of the communal areas where the property is part of an estate. Your lawyer will advise you fully on all the issues.

I am tempted by the attractive purchase price for a couple of maisonettes in Welling which have about 50 years left on the leases. Will this present a problem?

There are no two ways about it. A leasehold apartment in Welling 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. The majority of purchasers and lenders, leases with under 75 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 property 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 premises 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 Welling 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.

Can you provide any advice for leasehold conveyancing in Welling with the purpose of speeding up the sale process?

  • A significant proportion of the frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Welling can be reduced if you appoint lawyers as soon as you market your property and ask them to put together the leasehold information needed by the buyers conveyancers.
  • In the event that you altered the property did you need the Landlord’s approval? Have you, for example laid down wooden flooring? Welling leases often stipulate that internal structural changes or addition of wooden flooring require a licence from the Landlord consenting to such changes. Where you dont have the approvals to hand you should not communicate with the landlord without contacting your lawyer first.
  • A minority of Welling leases require Licence to Assign from the landlord. If this applies to your lease, it would be prudent to place the estate agents on notice to make sure that the purchasers put in hand bank and professional references. The bank reference should make it clear that the buyer is financially capable of paying 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 service charge figures so that they can pass this information on to the buyers or their lawyers.
  • If you have had conflict with your landlord or managing agents it is very important that these are settled prior to the flat being marketed. The buyers and their solicitors will be reluctant to purchase a property where a dispute is unsettled. You may need to swallow your pride and pay any arrears of service charge or settle the dispute prior to the buyers completing the purchase. It is therefore preferable to have any dispute settled prior to the contract papers being issued to the buyers’ solicitors. You are still duty bound to disclose particulars of the dispute to the buyers, but it is better to reveal the dispute as over as opposed to unsettled.
  • If you have the benefit of shareholding in the freehold, you should ensure that you have the original share document. Arranging a replacement share certificate can be a lengthy process and slows down many a Welling home move. Where a duplicate share certificate is required, do contact the company officers or managing agents (where relevant) for this as soon as possible.

  • Following years of negotiations we cannot agree with our landlord on how much the lease extension should cost for our flat in Welling. Can we issue an application to the Residential Property Tribunal Service?

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

    An example of a Lease Extension matter before the tribunal for a Welling flat is 103a Footscray Road in January 2014. The tribunal determines that the premium payable for the extended lease should be £34,500 according to the expert witness valuation calculation This case was in relation to 1 flat.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Welling