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West Harrow leasehold conveyancing Example Support Desk Enquiries

I’m about to sell my basement apartment in West Harrow.Conveyancing lawyers have not yet been instructed but I have just had a quarterly service charge invoice – should I leave it to the buyer to sort out?

The sensible thing to do is 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 seems to tick a lot of boxes, at a great figure which is making it all the more appealing. I have subsequently been informed that it's a leasehold rather than freehold. I am assuming that there are issues buying a house with a leasehold title in West Harrow. Conveyancing lawyers have not yet been appointed. Will they explain the issues?

Most houses in West Harrow are freehold rather than leasehold. In this scenario it’s worth having a local solicitor who is familiar with the area can help the conveyancing process. It is clear that you are buying in West Harrow so you should seriously consider looking for a West Harrow conveyancing solicitor and check that they have experience in dealing with leasehold houses. First you will need to check the unexpired lease term. Being a tenant 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 conduct changes to the property. You may also be required to pay a maintenance charge towards the maintenance of the estate where the property is part of an estate. Your lawyer should appraise you on the various issues.

What are your top tips when it comes to choosing a West Harrow conveyancing firm to deal with our lease extension?

When appointing a conveyancer for lease extension works (regardless if they are a West Harrow conveyancing practice) it is imperative that they be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of conveyancing. We recommend that you talk with two or three firms including non West Harrow conveyancing practices prior to instructing a firm. If the firm is ALEP accredited then so much the better. Some following of questions could be helpful:

  • How many lease extensions has the firm conducted in West Harrow in the last 12 months?
  • Can they put you in touch with client in West Harrow who can give a testimonial?

  • Do you have any advice for leasehold conveyancing in West Harrow with the aim of expediting the sale process?

    • A significant proportion of the frustration in leasehold conveyancing in West Harrow can be bypassed if you get in touch lawyers the minute you market your property and request that they start to collate the leasehold information needed by the buyers solicitors.
    • Many landlords or managing agents in West Harrow levy fees for providing management packs for a leasehold homes. You or your lawyers should enquire as to the actual amount of the charges. The management information sought on or before finding a buyer, thus reducing delays. The typical amount of time it takes to obtain the necessary information is three weeks. It is the most common cause of frustration in leasehold conveyancing in West Harrow.
  • Some West Harrow 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 obtain bank and professional references. The bank reference will need to confirm that the buyers are 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 there is a history of conflict with your freeholder or managing agents it is very important that these are resolved prior to the flat being marketed. The purchasers and their solicitors will be nervous about purchasing a flat where a dispute is unsettled. You may have to bite the bullet and pay any arrears of service charge or resolve 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 will still have to reveal details of the dispute to the purchasers, but it is clearly preferable to reveal the dispute as over rather than unresolved.
  • You may think that you are aware of the number of years left on your lease but you should verify this by asking your solicitors. A buyer’s lawyer will not be happy to advise their client to where the remaining number of years is less than 75 years. In the circumstances it is essential at an as soon as possible that you consider whether the lease term for your property needs extending. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your premises on the market for sale.

  • If all goes to plan we aim to complete our sale of a £300000 maisonette in West Harrow in six days. The freeholder has quoted £300 for Landlord’s certificate, insurance certificate and previous years statements of service charge. Is the landlord entitled to charge an administration fee for a leasehold conveyance in West Harrow?

    West Harrow conveyancing on leasehold flats normally necessitates the purchaser’s conveyancer sending questions for the landlord to answer. Although the landlord is under no legal obligation to respond to such questions the majority will be willing to assist. They are entitled charge a reasonable administration fee for answering enquiries or supplying documentation. There is no upper cap for such fees. The average costs for the information that you are referring to is over three hundred pounds, in some situations it exceeds £800. The management information fee demanded by the landlord must be accompanied by a summary of rights and obligations in relation to administration fees, without which the charge is technically not due. In reality one has no option but to pay whatever is demanded if you want to complete the sale of your home.

    I am the registered owner of a a ground floor purpose built flat in West Harrow. Given that I can not reach agreement with the landlord, can the Leasehold valuation Tribunal determine the amount payable for a lease extension?

    Most certainly. We can put you in touch with a West Harrow conveyancing firm who can help.

    An example of a Lease Extension decision for a West Harrow flat is flat 93b Welldon Crescent in May 2009. The Tribunals valuation for a 90-year lease extension of this fat was £13,171 This case was in relation to 1 flat. The unexpired term was 75.25 years.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in West Harrow