Frequently asked questions relating to March leasehold conveyancing
There are only Seventy years unexpired on my flat in March. I now want to extend my lease but my freeholder is missing. What should I do?
If you meet the appropriate requirements, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can apply to the County Court for an order to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will enable the lease to be extended by the magistrate. You will be obliged to demonstrate that you or your lawyers have made all reasonable attempts to track down the lessor. For most situations an enquiry agent should be helpful to conduct investigations and prepare a report to be used as evidence that the freeholder is indeed missing. It is advisable to get professional help from a property lawyer in relation to devolving into the landlord’s disappearance and the vesting order request to the County Court overseeing March.
Due to complete next month on a garden flat in March. Conveyancing lawyers have said that they are sending me a report on Monday. What should I be looking out for?
Your report on title for your leasehold conveyancing in March should include some of the following:
- Does the lease require carpeting throughout thus preventing wood flooring?
I am hoping to put an offer on a small detached house that appears to tick a lot of boxes, at a reasonable price which is making it more attractive. I have since found out that the title is leasehold as opposed to freehold. I am assuming that there are issues purchasing a house with a leasehold title in March. Conveyancing advisers have not yet been appointed. Will they explain the issues?
The majority of houses in March are freehold and not leasehold. This is one of the situations where having a local solicitor who is familiar with the area can assist with the conveyancing process. it is apparent that you are purchasing in March in which case you should be shopping around for a March conveyancing solicitor and be sure that they are used to dealing with leasehold houses. First you will need to check the unexpired lease term. As a lessee you will not be at liberty to do whatever you want with the house. The lease will likely included provisions for example obtaining the freeholder’sconsent to carry out alterations. You may also be required to pay a service charge towards the maintenance of the estate where the house is located on an estate. Your solicitor will report to you on the legal implications.
I am a negotiator for a busy estate agent office in March where we have witnessed a number of flat sales put at risk as a result of leases having less than 80 years remaining. I have received inconsistent advice from local March conveyancing solicitors. Could you confirm whether the vendor of a flat can commence the lease extension formalities for the purchaser on completion of the sale?
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 for a lease extension. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment needs to be completed before, or at the same time as 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.
Can you provide any advice for leasehold conveyancing in March from the point of view of speeding up the sale process?
- A significant proportion of the frustration in leasehold conveyancing in March can be reduced where you appoint lawyers the minute you market your property and request that they start to collate the leasehold information needed by the buyers lawyers.
- Many freeholders or managing agents in March charge for supplying management packs for a leasehold property. You or your lawyers should find out the actual amount of the charges. The management pack sought as soon as you have a buyer, thus accelerating the process. The typical amount of time it takes to receive management information is three weeks. It is the most frequent reason for delay in leasehold conveyancing in March.
I purchased a leasehold flat in March, conveyancing was carried out half a dozen years ago. Can you please calculate a probable premium for a statutory lease extension? Similar flats in March with an extended lease are worth £226,000. The average or mid-range amount of ground rent is £65 levied per year. The lease finishes on 21st October 2099
With just 76 years unexpired the likely cost is going to range between £8,600 and £9,800 plus legals.
The suggested premium range that we have given is a general guide to costs for extending a lease, but we are not able to advice on the actual costs without more comprehensive due diligence. You should not use the figures in a Notice of Claim or as an informal offer. There are no doubt other concerns that need to be taken into account and you obviously want to be as accurate as possible in your negotiations. You should not move forward based on this information before getting professional advice.