Questions and Answers: Melbourn leasehold conveyancing
Due to complete next month on a basement flat in Melbourn. Conveyancing lawyers inform me that they will have a report out to me tomorrow. What should I be looking out for?
The report on title for your leasehold conveyancing in Melbourn should include some of the following:
- Defining your legal entitlements in respect of the communal areas in the block.For example, does the lease grant a right of way over a path or hallways?
I've recently bought a leasehold flat in Melbourn. Am I liable to pay service charges for periods before my ownership?
Where the service charge has already been demanded from the previous lessee and they have not paid you would not usually be personally liable for the arrears. Strange as it may seem, your landlord may still be able to take action to forfeit the lease. A critical element of leasehold conveyancing for your conveyancer to ensure to have an up to date clear service charge receipt before completion of your purchase. If you have a mortgage this is likely to be a requirement of your lender.
If you purchase part way through an accounting year you may be liable for charges not yet demanded even if they relate to a period prior to your purchase. In such circumstances your conveyancer would normally arrange for the seller to set aside some money to cover their part of the period (usually called a service charge retention).
I am a negotiator for a reputable estate agency in Melbourn where we have witnessed a few leasehold sales jeopardised as a result of short leases. I have received contradictory information from local Melbourn conveyancing solicitors. Can you clarify whether the seller of a flat can instigate the lease extension formalities for the purchaser on completion of the sale?
Provided that the seller has been the owner for at least 2 years it is possible, to serve a Section 42 notice to commence the lease extension process and assign the benefit of the notice to the purchaser. This means that the buyer need not have to sit tight for 2 years for a lease extension. 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 disposal of the property.
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 £450000 flat in Melbourn next week. The management company has quoted £372 for Landlord’s certificate, insurance certificate and previous years service charge statements. Is the landlord entitled to charge such fees for a leasehold conveyance in Melbourn?
Melbourn conveyancing on leasehold flats more often than not requires the purchaser’s solicitor sending questions for the landlord to address. Although the landlord is under no legal obligation to address these enquiries the majority will be content to do so. They may charge a reasonable administration fee for responding to questions or supplying documentation. There is no upper cap for such fees. The average costs for the paperwork that you are referring to is £350, in some transactions it is above £800. The management information fee invoiced by the landlord must be sent together with a summary of entitlements and obligations in relation to administration charges, otherwise the invoice is not strictly payable. Reality however dictates that you have no choice but to pay whatever is requested of you if you want to complete the sale of your home.
In relation to leasehold conveyancing in Melbourn what are the most frequent lease problems?
There is nothing unique about leasehold conveyancing in Melbourn. All leases are individual and drafting errors can sometimes mean that certain provisions are erroneous. For example, if your lease is missing any of the following, it could be defective:
- Repairing obligations to or maintain elements of the premises
- Insurance obligations
- 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
A defective lease will likely cause issues when trying to sell a property as they can affect a potential buyer’s ability to obtain a mortgage. Yorkshire Building Society, Norwich and Peterborough Building Society, and Nottingham Building Society all have express 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.
Melbourn Leasehold Conveyancing - Sample of Questions you should ask before buying
It would be sensible to discover if the the lease includes any adverse restrictions in the lease. For instance it is very common in Melbourn leases that pets are not permitted in certain buildings in Melbourn. If you like the flatin Melbourn however your cat can’t move with you then you have a very hard choice.
Best to be warned whether redecorating or some other significant cost is pending to be shared by the leasehold owners and may well dramatically impact the level of the maintenance charges or result in a one time payment.
Is the freehold reversion owned collectively by the tenants?