Fixed-fee leasehold conveyancing in West Brompton:

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Sample questions relating to West Brompton leasehold conveyancing

There are only Sixty One years unexpired on my flat in West Brompton. I now want to get lease extension but my landlord is can not be found. What are my options?

If you qualify, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can submit an application to the County Court for an order to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will mean that your lease can be extended by the magistrate. You will be obliged to prove that you have used your best endeavours to find the lessor. In some cases an enquiry agent may be useful to conduct investigations and prepare a report which can be accepted by the court as proof that the freeholder is indeed missing. It is wise to seek advice from a conveyancer in relation to devolving into the landlord’s absence and the application to the County Court overseeing West Brompton.

I have just started marketing my ground floor flat in West Brompton.Conveyancing lawyers have not yet been instructed but I have just had a half-yearly 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 managing agents will not acknowledge the buyer unless 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.

Can you offer any advice when it comes to appointing a West Brompton conveyancing firm to deal with our lease extension?

If you are instructing a solicitor for lease extension works (regardless if they are a West Brompton conveyancing practice) it is essential that they be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of conveyancing. We recommend that you speak with two or three firms including non West Brompton conveyancing practices before you instructing a firm. Where the conveyancing practice is ALEP accredited then so much the better. Some following of questions could be helpful:

  • How familiar is the firm with lease extension legislation?
  • If the firm is not ALEP accredited then what is the reason?

  • Do you have any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in West Brompton with the intention of expediting the sale process?

    • A significant proportion of the frustration in leasehold conveyancing in West Brompton can be avoided if you appoint lawyers the minute your agents start marketing the property and request that they start to collate the leasehold documentation needed by the purchasers’ lawyers.
    • Many freeholders or Management Companies in West Brompton levy fees for providing management packs for a leasehold premises. You or your lawyers should enquire as to the fee that they propose to charge. The management pack sought on or before finding a buyer, thus reducing delays. The average time it takes to receive management information is three weeks. It is the most usual cause of delay in leasehold conveyancing in West Brompton.
  • If you have carried out any alterations to the residence would they have required Landlord’s consent? Have you, for example laid down wooden flooring? West Brompton leases often stipulate that internal structural alterations or installing wooden flooring require a licence issued by the Landlord acquiescing to such works. Should you dont have the paperwork to hand you should not contact the landlord without checking with your lawyer first.
  • If you have had any disputes with your freeholder or managing agents it is essential that these are settled prior to the flat being marketed. The buyers and their solicitors will be reluctant to purchase a flat where there is a current dispute. You may need to swallow your pride and pay any arrears of service charge or resolve the dispute prior to completion of the sale. 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 clearly preferable to reveal the dispute as historic as opposed to unsettled.
  • If you hold a share in a the Management Company, you should make sure that you have the original share document. Arranging a re-issued share certificate can be a time consuming formality and delays many a West Brompton home move. If a duplicate share certificate is needed, you should approach the company officers or managing agents (where applicable) for this as soon as possible.

  • Having spent years of dialogue we are unable to agree with our landlord on how much the lease extension should cost for our flat in West Brompton. Can we issue an application to the Residential Property Tribunal Service?

    in cases where there is a missing freeholder or where there is dispute about what the lease extension should cost, under the relevant statutes you can apply to the First-tier Tribunal (Property Chamber) to calculate the price.

    An example of a Freehold Enfranchisement case for a West Brompton flat is 5 Wetherby Gardens in June 2014. the Tribunal concluded that the price to be paid for the freehold of the property was £2,369,452. This case affected 5 flats. The the number of years remaining on the existing lease(s) was 38.98 years.

    What makes a West Brompton lease defective?

    There is nothing unique about leasehold conveyancing in West Brompton. Most leases are unique and drafting errors can result in certain clauses are wrong. 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
    • A duty to insure the building
    • Clauses dealing with recovering service charges for expenditure on the building or common parts.
    • Maintenance charge proportions which don’t add up to the correct percentage

    You could encounter a problem when selling your property if you have a defective lease primarily because it impacts on the ability to obtain a mortgage on the property. Yorkshire Building Society, Norwich and Peterborough Building Society, and Nottingham Building Society all have very detailed conveyancing instructions when it comes to what is expected in a lease. If a mortgage lender believes that the lease does not cover certain provisions they may refuse to grant the mortgage, forcing the purchaser to withdraw.