Fixed-fee leasehold conveyancing in Whetstone:

Leasehold conveyancing in Whetstone is more complex than freehold. Your home move will be smoother where you choose a lawyer with a wealth of experience of leasehold conveyancing in Whetstone and across next step up in loc. The lawyers we recommend have been approved by your lender so use our search tool to check.

Top Five Questions relating to Whetstone leasehold conveyancing

I only have Seventy years unexpired on my lease in Whetstone. I now wish to extend my lease but my landlord is missing. What options are available to me?

If you meet the appropriate requirements, 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 made all reasonable attempts to locate the landlord. For most situations an enquiry agent should be helpful to try and locate and prepare an expert document which can be used as proof that the freeholder is indeed missing. It is advisable to get professional help from a solicitor in relation to devolving into the landlord’s disappearance and the application to the County Court overseeing Whetstone.

I am tempted by the attractive purchase price for a two flats in Whetstone which have in the region of 50 years unexpired on the leases. Will this present a problem?

There are no two ways about it. A leasehold flat in Whetstone is a wasting asset as a result of the shortening lease. The closer the lease gets to its expiry date, the more it reduces the value of the property. 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 Whetstone conveyancing experts who will explain the options available to you during an initial telephone conversation free of charge. More often than not it is possible to negotiate informally with the freeholder to extend the lease You may find he or she is happy to negotiate informally and willing to consider your offer straight off, without having to involve anyone else. This will save you time and money and it could help you reach a lower price on the lease. You need to ensure that any new 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.

I am employed by a busy estate agency in Whetstone where we see a number of leasehold sales derailed as a result of leases having less than 80 years remaining. I have received contradictory information from local Whetstone conveyancing solicitors. Can you clarify whether the seller of a flat can commence the lease extension process for the buyer?

Provided that the seller has owned the lease for at least 2 years it is possible, to serve a Section 42 notice to kick-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 wait 2 years to extend their lease. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment has to be done before, or at the same time as 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 purchaser.

Our conveyancer has advised that he intends to complete and exchange simultaneously on the disposal of our £200000 apartment in Whetstone next week. The management company has quoted £312 for Certificate of Compliance, insurance certificate and previous years statements of service charge. Is it legal for a freeholder to charge an administration fee for a leasehold conveyance in Whetstone?

Whetstone conveyancing on leasehold maisonettes normally requires the purchaser’s conveyancer sending enquiries for the landlord to address. Although the landlord is not legally bound to address such questions most will be content to assist. They are at liberty invoice a reasonable administration fee for responding to questions or supplying documentation. There is no upper cap for such fees. The average fee for the information that you are referring to is over three hundred pounds, in some situations it exceeds £800. The administration charge demanded by the landlord must be sent together with a synopsis of rights and obligations in relation to administration fees, otherwise the charge is technically not due. Reality however dictates that you have no choice but to pay whatever is demanded if you want to sell the property.

Despite our best efforts, we have been unsuccessful in trying to purchase the freehold in Whetstone. Can this matter be resolved via the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal?

Most definitely. We are happy to put you in touch with a Whetstone conveyancing firm who can help.

An example of a Lease Extension matter before the tribunal for a Whetstone flat is Flat 2 2 Netherfield Road in April 2010. The Tribunale held that premium payable for a 90 year extension to the existing Lease should be £7,705. This case related to 1 flat. The the unexpired residue of the current lease was 76 years.

What makes a Whetstone lease unacceptable for security purposes?

There is nothing unique about leasehold conveyancing in Whetstone. All leases are individual and legal mistakes in the legal wording can sometimes mean that certain clauses are not included. The following missing provisions could result in a defective lease:

  • Repairing obligations to or maintain elements of the building
  • A duty to insure the building
  • 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

You may have difficulties when selling your property if you have a defective lease primarily because it impacts on the ability to obtain a mortgage on the property. Nationwide Building Society, Virgin Money, and TSB all have very detailed 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 provide security, forcing the buyer to withdraw.