Fixed-fee leasehold conveyancing in Machen:

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Recently asked questions relating to Machen leasehold conveyancing

Harry (my fiance) and I may need to let out our Machen 1st floor flat for a while due to taking a sabbatical. We instructed a Machen conveyancing firm in 2004 but they have closed and we did not think at the time seek any advice as to whether the lease allows us to sublet. How do we find out?

Some leases for properties in Machen do contain a provision to say that subletting is only permitted with prior consent from the landlord. The landlord cannot unreasonably refuse but, in such cases, they would need to review references. Experience suggests that problems are usually caused by unsatisfactory tenants rather than owner-occupiers and for that reason you can expect the freeholder to take up the references and consider them carefully before granting consent.

I have just started marketing my garden apartment in Machen.Conveyancing has not commenced but I have just received a yearly service charge demand – should I leave it to the buyer to sort out?

The sensible thing to do is pay the service charge 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 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. This will smooth the conveyancing process.

Back In 2009, I bought a leasehold flat in Machen. Conveyancing and Barclays Direct mortgage organised. A letter has just been received from someone saying they have taken over the freehold. It included a demand for arrears of ground rent dating back to 1996. The conveyancing practitioner in Machen who acted for me is not around.Any advice?

The first thing you should do is contact the Land Registry to make sure that this person is in fact the registered owner of the freehold reversion. It is not necessary to incur the fees of a Machen conveyancing firm to do this as it can be done on-line for a few pound. Rest assured that in any event, even if this is the rightful freeholder, under the Limitation Act 1980 no more than 6 years of rent can be collected.

Do you have any advice for leasehold conveyancing in Machen with the purpose of speeding up the sale process?

  • A significant proportion of the delay in leasehold conveyancing in Machen can be reduced where you get in touch lawyers the minute your agents start marketing the property and ask them to put together the leasehold documentation which will be required by the purchasers’ solicitors.
  • Some Machen leases require Licence to Assign from the landlord. If this applies to your lease, you should place the estate agents on notice to make sure that the purchasers obtain bank and professional references. Any bank reference should make it clear that the buyer is financially capable of paying the yearly 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 actual amount of the service charge so that they can pass this information on to the buyers or their solicitors.
  • If there is a history of conflict with your freeholder or managing agents it is essential that these are settled before the property is put on the market. The purchasers and their solicitors will be reluctant to purchase a property where a dispute is unresolved. You will have to accept that you will have to pay any arrears of service charge or settle the dispute prior to completion of the sale. It is therefore preferable to have any dispute settled ahead of the contract papers being issued to the buyers’ solicitors. You will still have to reveal particulars of the dispute to the purchasers, but it is better to present the dispute as over rather than unsettled.
  • If you have the benefit of shareholding in the freehold, you should make sure that you have the original share document. Obtaining a re-issued share certificate is often a time consuming formality and frustrates many a Machen conveyancing transaction. Where a new share certificate is necessary, do contact the company director and secretary or managing agents (if relevant) for this as soon as possible.
  • You believe that you know the number of years remaining on your lease but it would be wise to double-check by asking your lawyers. A purchaser's conveyancer will not be happy to advise their client to proceed with the purchase of a leasehold property the remaining number of years is below 75 years. It is therefore essential at an as soon as possible that you identify whether the lease term for your property needs extending. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your property on the market for sale.

  • Our conveyancer has advised that he intends to complete and exchange simultaneously on the disposal of our £200000 maisonette in Machen in nine days. The management company has quoted £324 for Certificate of Compliance, insurance certificate and previous years service charge statements. Is the landlord entitled to charge an administration fee for a flat conveyance in Machen?

    Machen conveyancing on leasehold apartments ordinarily involves fees being levied by landlords agents :

    • Completing conveyancing due diligence questions
    • Where consent is required before sale in Machen
    • Copies of the building insurance and schedule
    • Deeds of covenant upon sale
    • Registering of the assignment of the change of lessee after a sale
    Your solicitor will have no control over the level of the charges for this information but the average costs for the information for Machen leasehold premises is £350. For Machen conveyancing transactions it is customary for the seller to pay for these costs. The landlord or their agents are under no legal obligation to answer such questions most will be willing to do so - albeit often at exorbitant prices where the fees bear little relation to the work involved. Unfortunately there is no law that requires fixed charges for administrative tasks. Neither is there any legal time frame by which they are required to provide the information.

    I own a 1st floor flat in Machen, conveyancing having been completed half a dozen years ago. Can you please calculate a probable premium for a statutory lease extension? Similar flats in Machen with over 90 years remaining are worth £173,000. The ground rent is £45 levied per year. The lease runs out on 21st October 2102

    With 80 years left to run we estimate the premium for your lease extension to be between £9,500 and £11,000 plus costs.

    The suggested premium range above a general guide to costs for renewing a lease, but we are not able to advice on the actual costs in the absence of comprehensive investigations. Do not use this information in a Notice of Claim or as an informal offer. There may be other concerns that need to be considered and you obviously should be as accurate as possible in your negotiations. Neither should you take any other action placing reliance on this information without first getting professional advice.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Machen