Frequently asked questions relating to Shinfield leasehold conveyancing
I am on look out for some leasehold conveyancing in Shinfield. Before diving in I want to be sure as to the number of years remaining on the lease.
Assuming the lease is registered - and 99.9% are in Shinfield - 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.
I today plan to offer on a house that seems to be perfect, at a great figure which is making it more attractive. I have subsequently found out 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 Shinfield. Conveyancing solicitors have are about to be instructed. Will they explain the issues?
The majority of houses in Shinfield are freehold and not leasehold. This is one of the situations where having a local solicitor who is familiar with the area can help the conveyancing process. We note that you are buying in Shinfield in which case you should be shopping around for a Shinfield conveyancing solicitor and check that they are used to dealing with leasehold houses. First you will need to check the unexpired lease term. As a tenant you will not be entirely free to do whatever you want to the property. The lease will likely included provisions such as obtaining the landlord’sconsent to carry out changes to the property. It may be necessary to pay a service charge towards the upkeep of the communal areas where the property is part of an estate. Your solicitor will appraise you on the various issues.
I am attracted to a couple of flats in Shinfield which have about fifty years unexpired on the leases. should I be concerned?
There are no two ways about it. A leasehold flat in Shinfield is a wasting asset as a result of the reducing lease term. The nearer the lease gets to its expiry date, the more it reduces the salability of the property. The majority of buyers and mortgage companies, leases with under 75 years become less and less marketable. On a more upbeat note, leaseholders can extend their leases by serving a Section 42 Notice. One stipulation is that they must have owned the premises 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 property 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 Shinfield conveyancing experts who will explain the options available to you during an initial telephone conversation free of charge. A more straightforward and quicker method of extending would be to contact your landlord directly and sound him out on the prospect of extending the lease You may find he or she is happy to negotiate informally and willing to consider your offer straight off, without having to involve anyone else. This will save you time and money and it could help you reach a lower price on the lease. You need to ensure that any new 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.
I've recently bought a leasehold house in Shinfield. Am I liable to pay service charges relating to a period prior to my ownership?
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 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 am employed by a reputable estate agent office in Shinfield where we see a number of leasehold sales put at risk as a result of short leases. I have received conflicting advice from local Shinfield conveyancing firms. Please can you clarify whether the owner of a flat can start 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. The benefit of this is 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 before, or at the same time as completion of the disposal of the property.
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.
Leasehold Conveyancing in Shinfield - Sample of Queries before Purchasing
Best to be warned if window replacement or some other major work is pending to be shared by the leasehold owners and will materially increase the the maintenance fees or result in a one off invoice.
Who are the managing agents?
Where a Shinfield lease has less than eighty years it will impact the marketability of the flat. It is worth checking with your bank that they are happy with remaining years on the lease. A short lease means that you will probably have to extend the lease at some point and you need to have some idea of what this will be. For most Shinfieldlease extensions you will be required to have been the owner of the premises for 24 months in order to be legally able to extend the lease.