Questions and Answers: Princes Risborough leasehold conveyancing
Having had my offer accepted I require leasehold conveyancing in Princes Risborough. Before I get started I would like to find out the number of years remaining on the lease.
If the lease is registered - and 99.9% are in Princes Risborough - then the leasehold title will always include the basic details 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 Seventy years left on my flat in Princes Risborough. I am keen to get lease extension but my landlord is can not be found. What options are available to me?
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 enable the lease to be lengthened by the Court. You will be obliged to demonstrate that you have made all reasonable attempts to find the lessor. In some cases a specialist may be useful to conduct investigations and to produce a report to 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 investigating the landlord’s absence and the application to the County Court covering Princes Risborough.
I am attracted to a two maisonettes in Princes Risborough both have approximately forty five years remaining on the lease term. Do I need to be concerned?
There is no doubt about it. A leasehold apartment in Princes Risborough is a deteriorating asset as a result of the shortening lease. The closer the lease gets to zero years unexpired, the more it reduces the value of the property. For most purchasers and mortgage companies, leases with less than eighty years become less and less attractive. On a more positive note, leaseholders can extend their leases by serving a Section 42 Notice. One stipulation is that they must have owned the property for two years (unlike a Section 13 notice for purchasing the freehold, when leaseholders can participate from day one of ownership). When successful, they will have the right to an extension of 90 years to the current term and ground rent is effectively reduced to zero. Before moving forward with a purchase of premises with a short lease term remaining you should talk to a solicitor specialising in lease extensions and leasehold enfranchisement. We are are happy to put you in touch with Princes Risborough conveyancing experts who will explain the options available to you during an initial telephone conversation free of charge. More often than not it is possible to negotiate informally with the freeholder to extend the lease They may agree to a smaller lump sum and an increase in the ground rent, but to shorter extension terms in return. You need to ensure that the agreed terms represent good long-term value compared with the standard benefits of the Section 42 Notice and that onerous clauses are not inserted into any redrafting of the lease.
Last month I purchased a leasehold flat in Princes Risborough. 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 owner 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. It is an essential part 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 busy estate agency in Princes Risborough where we see a few leasehold sales put at risk due to leases having less than 80 years remaining. I have been given inconsistent advice from local Princes Risborough conveyancing firms. Could you clarify whether the seller of a flat can start the lease extension process for the buyer?
As long as 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 proposed purchaser 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 at the same time as completion of the sale.
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.
Princes Risborough Conveyancing for Leasehold Flats - A selection of Queries Prior to Purchasing
Does the lease have onerous restrictions?
On the whole the cost for major works are not included within maintenance charges, although some managing agents in Princes Risborough obliged leasehold owners to pay into a sinking fund and this is used to offset against major repairs or maintenance.
What is the the remaining lease term?