Quality lawyers for Leasehold Conveyancing in Plymouth

While any conveyancing practice can theoretically deal with your leasehold conveyancing in Plymouth, your mortgage provider may not be willing to work with them if the firm are not on their list of approved solicitors for conveyancing

Recently asked questions relating to Plymouth leasehold conveyancing

Having had my offer accepted I require leasehold conveyancing in Plymouth. Before I set the wheels in motion I require certainty as to the unexpired term of the lease.

Assuming the lease is recorded at the land registry - and almost all are in Plymouth - 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.

Having checked my lease I have discovered that there are only 62 years unexpired on my flat in Plymouth. I need to get lease extension but my freeholder is missing. What should I do?

If you qualify, under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 you can apply to the County Court for for permission to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will mean that your lease can be extended by the magistrate. However, you will be required to prove that you have used your best endeavours to track down the landlord. In some cases a specialist should be helpful to try and locate and to produce a report which can be used as evidence that the landlord can not be located. It is advisable to get professional help from a solicitor in relation to proving the landlord’s disappearance and the vesting order request to the County Court covering Plymouth.

I today plan to offer on a house that seems to tick a lot of boxes, at a reasonable price which is making it more attractive. I have just discovered that the title is leasehold as opposed to freehold. I would have thought that there are issues purchasing a house with a leasehold title in Plymouth. Conveyancing solicitors have not yet been instructed. Will my lawyers set out the risks of buying a leasehold house in Plymouth ?

Most houses in Plymouth are freehold rather than leasehold. This is one of the situations where having a local conveyancer used to dealing with such properties who can assist with the conveyancing process. It is clear that you are purchasing in Plymouth so you should seriously consider shopping around for a Plymouth conveyancing solicitor and be sure that they have experience in transacting on leasehold houses. As a matter of priority you will need to check the number of years remaining. Being a tenant you will not be at liberty to do whatever you want to the property. The lease comes with conditions for example obtaining the freeholder’sconsent to carry out changes to the property. It may be necessary to pay a contribution towards the upkeep of the estate where the property is part of an estate. Your conveyancer should advise you fully on all the issues.

I work for a busy estate agent office in Plymouth where we see a number of leasehold sales put at risk as a result of leases having less than 80 years remaining. I have been given conflicting advice from local Plymouth conveyancing firms. Could you clarify whether the owner of a flat can start the lease extension process 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 kick-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 at the same time as completion of the disposal of the property.

Alternatively, it may be possible 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 buyer.

Can you provide any advice for leasehold conveyancing in Plymouth from the perspective of expediting the sale process?

  • A significant proportion of the frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Plymouth can be avoided if you instruct lawyers as soon as your agents start marketing the property and ask them to collate the leasehold documentation needed by the purchasers’ representatives.
  • Many freeholders or managing agents in Plymouth levy fees for providing management packs for a leasehold homes. You or your lawyers should enquire as to the fee that they propose to charge. The management pack sought as soon as you have a buyer, thus reducing delays. The average time it takes to receive management information is three weeks. It is the most frequent reason for frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Plymouth.
  • In the event that you altered the property did you need the Landlord’s permission? Have you, for example installed wooden flooring? Plymouth leases often stipulate that internal structural alterations or laying down wooden flooring require a licence issued by the Landlord consenting to such alterations. If you dont have the approvals to hand you should not communicate with the landlord without contacting your solicitor first.
  • If you have had any disputes with your freeholder or managing agents it is essential that these are settled before the property is marketed. The purchasers and their solicitors will be reluctant to purchase a flat where there is a current dispute. You will have to accept that you will have to discharge any arrears of service charge or settle the dispute prior to the buyers completing the purchase. It is therefore preferable to have any dispute settled prior to the contract papers being issued to the buyers’ solicitors. You will still have to reveal particulars of the dispute to the buyers, but it is clearly preferable to reveal the dispute as over as opposed to unresolved.
  • You may think that you are aware of the number of years remaining on your lease but it would be wise to verify this via your lawyers. A purchaser's conveyancer will not be happy to advise their client to where the lease term is less than 75 years. It is therefore essential at an as soon as possible that you identify whether the lease requires a lease extension. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your premises on the market for sale.

  • I own a leasehold flat in Plymouth, conveyancing was carried out 5 years ago. How much will my lease extension cost? Equivalent properties in Plymouth with over 90 years remaining are worth £203,000. The average or mid-range amount of ground rent is £65 invoiced annually. The lease comes to an end on 21st October 2097

    With just 76 years unexpired the likely cost is going to be between £11,400 and £13,200 as well as plus your own and the landlord's "reasonable" professional fees.

    The figure that we have given is a general guide to costs for renewing a lease, but we cannot give you a more accurate figure in the absence of detailed due diligence. You should not use this information in tribunal or court proceedings. There are no doubt additional concerns that need to be considered and you obviously should be as accurate as possible in your negotiations. You should not move forward placing reliance on this information before seeking the advice of a professional.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Plymouth