Sample questions relating to Wimbledon leasehold conveyancing
There are only 62 years unexpired on my lease in Wimbledon. I need 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 enable the lease to be granted an extra 90 years by the magistrate. You will be obliged to demonstrate that you have used your best endeavours to locate the landlord. In some cases a specialist may be useful to try and locate and prepare a report which can be used as proof that the freeholder can not be located. It is wise to seek advice from a conveyancer both on investigating the landlord’s disappearance and the vesting order request to the County Court covering Wimbledon.
I today plan to offer on a house that appears to tick a lot of boxes, at a great price which is making it more attractive. I have subsequently been informed that the title is leasehold rather than freehold. I would have thought that there are particular concerns purchasing a house with a leasehold title in Wimbledon. Conveyancing lawyers have are soon to be instructed. Will they explain the issues?
Most houses in Wimbledon are freehold rather than 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 buying in Wimbledon in which case you should be shopping around for a Wimbledon conveyancing solicitor and be sure that they are used to advising on leasehold houses. As a matter of priority you will need to check the unexpired lease term. As a leaseholder you will not be entirely free to do whatever you want to the property. The lease will likely included provisions such as requiring the landlord’spermission to conduct alterations. You may also be required to pay a contribution towards the maintenance of the estate where the house is part of an estate. Your solicitor will advise you fully on all the issues.
I own a leasehold flat in Wimbledon. Conveyancing and Barclays mortgage went though with no issue. A letter has just been received from someone claiming to own the reversionary interest in the property. It included a demand for arrears of ground rent dating back to 1997. The conveyancing practitioner in Wimbledon who previously acted has now retired.Any advice?
First contact HMLR to be sure that this person is indeed the registered owner of the freehold reversion. You do not need to instruct a Wimbledon conveyancing solicitor to do this as you can do this on the Land Registry website for a few pound. You should note that in any event, even if this is the legitimate landlord, under the Limitation Act 1980 the limitation period for recovery of ground rent is six years.
I am looking at a couple of maisonettes in Wimbledon which have in the region of 50 years left on the lease term. Will this present a problem?
There is no doubt about it. A leasehold flat in Wimbledon is a deteriorating asset as a result of the reducing lease term. The closer the lease gets to zero years unexpired, the more it reduces the value of the property. For most purchasers and banks, leases with less than eighty years become less and less attractive. On a more upbeat note, leaseholders can extend their leases by serving a Section 42 Notice. One stipulation is that they must have owned the premises 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 property 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 Wimbledon 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 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 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 agent office in Wimbledon where we see a few flat sales jeopardised due to short leases. I have been given conflicting advice from local Wimbledon conveyancing firms. Please can you clarify whether the seller of a flat can commence the lease extension formalities for the purchaser on completion of the sale?
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. This means that the proposed purchaser can avoid having to wait 2 years for a lease extension. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment has to be done prior to, or simultaneously with completion of the disposal of the property.
An alternative approach is to extend the lease informally by agreement with the landlord 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.
I am the leaseholder of a ground flat in Wimbledon. Given that I can not reach agreement with the freeholder, can the Leasehold valuation Tribunal determine the amount due for a lease extension?
in cases where there is a missing landlord or if there is dispute about the premium for a lease extension, under the relevant statutes you can apply to the First-tier Tribunal (Property Chamber) to assess the amount due.
An example of a Freehold Enfranchisement case for a Wimbledon property is 629 Garratt Lane in September 2014. The consideration payable for the acquisition of the freehold of the subject property was the sum £21,302.74. This represented a valuation of the freehold in the sum of £23,864 from which the sum of £2561.27 has been deducted in respect of certain costs in repairing and insuring the premises This case related to 3 flats. The the unexpired residue of the current lease was 72.94 years.