Recently asked questions relating to Oldham leasehold conveyancing
Having had my offer accepted I require leasehold conveyancing in Oldham. Before I get started I want to be sure as to the remaining lease term.
If the lease is recorded at the land registry - and most are in Oldham - then the leasehold title will always include the short particulars of the lease, namely the date; the term; and the original parties. From a conveyancing perspective such details then enable any prospective buyer and lender to confirm that any lease they are looking at is the one relevant to that title.For any other purpose, such as confirming how long the term was granted for and calculating what is left, then the register should be sufficient on it's own.
There are only 68 years remaining on my lease in Oldham. I am keen to extend my lease 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 for permission to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will enable the lease to be extended by the Court. However, you will be required to demonstrate that you have done all that could be expected to find the freeholder. On the whole an enquiry agent may be useful to conduct investigations and prepare an expert document which can be accepted by the court as proof that the freeholder can not be located. It is advisable to get professional help from a solicitor both on proving the landlord’s disappearance and the application to the County Court covering Oldham.
I've recently bought a leasehold property in Oldham. Do I have any liability for service charges relating to a period prior to completion of my purchase?
In a situation 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 be sure 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 work for a busy estate agent office in Oldham where we have witnessed a number of flat sales put at risk due to short leases. I have received conflicting advice from local Oldham conveyancing firms. Can you confirm whether the vendor of a flat can initiate 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 commence the lease extension process and assign the benefit of the notice to the purchaser. This means that the buyer can avoid having to sit tight for 2 years for a lease extension. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment needs to be completed before, or simultaneously with completion of the sale.
Alternatively, it may be possible 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 buyer.
What are your top tips when it comes to finding a Oldham conveyancing firm to carry out our lease extension conveyancing?
If you are instructing a solicitor for your lease extension (regardless if they are a Oldham conveyancing firm) it is most important that he or she should be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of conveyancing. We recommend that you speak with two or three firms including non Oldham conveyancing practices before you instructing a firm. Where the conveyancing practice is ALEP accredited then that’s a bonus. Some following of questions could be helpful:
- If they are not ALEP accredited then why not?
Oldham Conveyancing for Leasehold Flats - A selection of Questions you should consider before buying
You should want to find out as much as possible concerning the company managing the block as they will affect your use and enjoyment of the property. As the owner of a leasehold property you are often in the clutches of the managing agents both financially and when it comes to day to day matters like the upkeep of the communal areas. Enquire of other tenants whether they are happy with them. In conclusion, be sure you discover the dates that you are obliged pay the maintenance charge to the managing agents and precisely what it includes.
The answer will be important as a) areas could result in problems for the building as the common areas may begin to deteriorate where repairs are not paid for b) if the leaseholders have a dispute with the managing agents you will wish to have all the details
It is important to be aware whether fixing the lift or some other significant cost is due shortly to be shared amongst the tenants and will dramatically increase the the maintenance costs or result in a specific invoice.