Quality lawyers for Leasehold Conveyancing in Runcorn

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Runcorn leasehold conveyancing: Q and A’s

Jane (my partner) and I may need to rent out our Runcorn 1st floor flat temporarily due to a new job. We instructed a Runcorn conveyancing practice in 2004 but they have since shut and we did not have the foresight to get any advice as to whether the lease permits subletting. How do we find out?

Even though your last Runcorn conveyancing lawyer is not around you can check your lease to see if you are permitted to let out the property. The accepted inference is that if the lease is non-specific, subletting is permitted. There may be a precondition that you need to seek consent from your landlord or other appropriate person prior to subletting. This means you not allowed to sublet in the absence of prior permission. The consent should not be unreasonably turned down. If the lease prohibits you from letting out the property you will need to ask your landlord if they are willing to waive this restriction.

Back In 2003, I bought a leasehold house in Runcorn. Conveyancing and Britannia mortgage went though with no issue. I have received a letter from someone claiming to own the reversionary interest in the property. It included a demand for arrears of ground rent dating back to 1994. The conveyancing solicitor in Runcorn who acted for me is not around.Any advice?

First make enquiries of HMLR to make sure that this person is indeed the registered owner of the freehold reversion. There is no need to instruct a Runcorn conveyancing practitioner to do this as you can do this on the Land Registry website for £3. Rest assured that in any event, even if this is the legitimate freeholder, under the Limitation Act 1980 the limitation period for recovery of ground rent is six years.

Do you have any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in Runcorn with the aim of saving time on the sale process?

  • Much of the frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Runcorn can be avoided where you appoint lawyers the minute your agents start marketing the property and ask them to put together the leasehold documentation which will be required by the buyers conveyancers.
  • Many freeholders or Management Companies in Runcorn charge for providing management packs for a leasehold premises. You or your lawyers should discover the fee that they propose to charge. The management information can be applied for on or before finding a buyer, thus accelerating the process. The typical amount of time it takes to obtain the necessary information is three weeks. It is the most common reason for delay in leasehold conveyancing in Runcorn.
  • In the event that you altered the property did you need the Landlord’s consent? Have you, for example installed wooden flooring? Most leases in Runcorn state that internal structural changes or installing wooden flooring necessitate a licence from the Landlord consenting to such changes. Should you dont have the approvals in place do not communicate with the landlord without contacting your solicitor in advance.
  • A minority of Runcorn leases require Licence to Assign from the landlord. If this is the case, you should notify your estate agents to make sure that the purchasers obtain financial (bank) and professional references. The bank reference should make it clear that the buyer is financially capable of paying the yearly service charge and the actual amount of the service charge should be quoted in the bank’s letter. You will therefore need to provide your estate agents with the service charge figures so that they can pass this information on to the purchasers or their solicitors.
  • You believe that you know the number of years left on your lease but you should verify this via your conveyancers. A purchaser's conveyancer will be unlikely to recommend their client to where the lease term is below 80 years. It is therefore important at an early stage that you identify whether the lease requires a lease extension. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your property on the market for sale.

  • All being well we will complete the sale of our £450000 flat in Runcorn in just under a week. The freeholder has quoted £372 for Certificate of Compliance, building insurance schedule and previous years statements of service charge. Is the landlord entitled to charge exorbitant fees for a flat conveyance in Runcorn?

    Runcorn conveyancing on leasehold maisonettes often requires the buyer’s conveyancer submitting questions for the landlord to answer. Although the landlord is under no legal obligation to address such questions the majority will be content to assist. They are entitled levy a reasonable administration fee for responding to enquiries or supplying documentation. There is no set fee. The average fee for the information that you are referring to is £350, in some situations it is above £800. The management information fee demanded by the landlord must be sent together with a summary of entitlements and obligations in relation to administration fees, without which the charge is technically not due. Reality however dictates that one has little option but to pay whatever is requested of you if you want to sell the property.

    Are there common problems that you see in leases for Runcorn properties?

    Leasehold conveyancing in Runcorn is not unique. Most leases is drafted differently and legal mistakes in the legal wording can sometimes mean that certain provisions are wrong. For example, if your lease is missing any of the following, it could be defective:

    • A provision to repair to or maintain parts of the building
    • Insurance obligations
    • Clauses dealing with recovering service charges for expenditure on the building or common parts.
    • Maintenance charge proportions which don’t add up to the correct percentage

    A defective lease can cause issues when trying to sell a property primarily because it impacts on the ability to obtain a mortgage on the property. Santander, Chelsea Building Society, and Platform Home Loans Ltd all have express requirements when it comes to what is expected in a lease. If a mortgage lender believes that the lease is defective they may refuse to provide security, forcing the buyer to withdraw.

    I own a ground floor flat in Runcorn, conveyancing was carried out half a dozen years ago. Can you please calculate a probable premium for a statutory lease extension? Similar properties in Runcorn with a long lease are worth £206,000. The average or mid-range amount of ground rent is £45 invoiced every year. The lease ceases on 21st October 2081

    With 59 years remaining on your lease we estimate the premium for your lease extension to range between £24,700 and £28,600 plus costs.

    The suggested premium range above a general guide to costs for extending a lease, but we cannot give you the actual costs without more comprehensive due diligence. Do not use this information in tribunal or court proceedings. There may be additional issues that need to be taken into account and you obviously should be as accurate as possible in your negotiations. You should not take any other action based on this information without first seeking the advice of a professional.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Runcorn