Fixed-fee leasehold conveyancing in Small Heath:

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Common questions relating to Small Heath leasehold conveyancing

I am hoping to exchange soon on a basement flat in Small Heath. Conveyancing solicitors have said that they are sending me a report within the next couple of days. Are there areas in the report that I should be focusing on?

The report on title for your leasehold conveyancing in Small Heath should include some of the following:

  • You should receive a copy of the lease
  • The length of the lease term You should be advised as what happens when the lease expires, and informed of the importance of not letting the lease term falling below eighty years
  • The total extent of the property. This will be the property itself but might incorporate a loft or cellar if appropriate.
  • You need to be told what counts as a Nuisance in the lease
  • Ground rent - how much and when you need to pay, and also know whether this is subject to change
  • Changes to the flat (alterations and additions)
  • The landlord’s obligations to repair and maintain the building. It is important that you know who is responsible for the repair and maintenance of every part of the building For details of the information to be contained in your report on your leasehold property in Small Heath please ask your solicitor in ahead of your conveyancing in Small Heath

  • I am hoping to put an offer on a small detached house that seems to be perfect, at a great price which is making it more attractive. I have since discovered that the title is leasehold rather than freehold. I would have thought that there are particular concerns purchasing a leasehold house in Small Heath. Conveyancing solicitors have not yet been instructed. Will my lawyers set out the implications of buying a leasehold house in Small Heath ?

    The majority of houses in Small Heath are freehold and not leasehold. In this scenario it’s worth having a local conveyancer who is familiar with the area can help the conveyancing process. it is apparent that you are purchasing in Small Heath so you should seriously consider shopping around for a Small Heath conveyancing solicitor and check that they have experience in advising on leasehold houses. As a matter of priority you will need to check the number of years remaining. As a leaseholder you will not be at liberty to do whatever you want to the property. The lease comes with conditions for example requiring the landlord’sconsent to carry out changes to the property. It may be necessary to pay a maintenance charge towards the upkeep of the communal areas where the house is part of an estate. Your lawyer should advise you fully on all the issues.

    I am tempted by the attractive purchase price for a couple of maisonettes in Small Heath both have about fifty years remaining on the lease term. Should I regard a short lease as a deal breaker?

    There are no two ways about it. A leasehold apartment in Small Heath is a wasting asset as a result of the reducing lease term. The nearer the lease gets to zero years unexpired, the more it reduces the value of the premises. The majority of 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 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 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 Small Heath 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.

    What are your top tips when it comes to appointing a Small Heath conveyancing firm to deal with our lease extension?

    If you are instructing a conveyancer for your lease extension (regardless if they are a Small Heath conveyancing practice) it is essential that he or she should be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of work. We advise that you make enquires with two or three firms including non Small Heath conveyancing practices prior to instructing a firm. Where the conveyancing practice is ALEP accredited then so much the better. Some following of questions could be helpful:

    • How familiar is the firm with lease extension legislation?
  • If they are not ALEP accredited then why not?

  • Can you provide any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in Small Heath with the purpose of expediting the sale process?

    • Much of the frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Small Heath can be avoided if you instruct lawyers as soon as your agents start advertising the property and ask them to collate the leasehold documentation needed by the buyers solicitors.
    • The majority landlords or managing agents in Small Heath charge for supplying management packs for a leasehold homes. You or your lawyers should enquire as to the actual amount of the charges. The management pack can be applied for as soon as you have a buyer, thus accelerating the process. The average time it takes to obtain the necessary information is three weeks. It is the most common cause of delay in leasehold conveyancing in Small Heath.
  • Some Small Heath leases require Landlord’s consent to the sale and approval of the buyers. If this is the case, you should place the estate agents on notice to make sure that the purchasers put in hand bank and professional references. The bank reference will need to confirm that the buyers are able to meet the annual 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.
  • If you have had any disputes with your landlord or managing agents it is very important that these are settled prior to the flat being put on the market. The buyers and their solicitors will be reluctant to purchase a property where there is a current dispute. You may need to swallow your pride and pay any arrears of service charge or resolve the dispute prior to completion of the sale. It is therefore preferable to have any dispute settled ahead of 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 present the dispute as over as opposed to ongoing.
  • If you have the benefit of shareholding in the Management Company, you should make sure that you hold the original share certificate. Obtaining a new share certificate is often a lengthy formality and delays many a Small Heath home move. If a duplicate share is necessary, do contact the company officers or managing agents (where applicable) for this sooner rather than later.

  • Small Heath Leasehold Conveyancing - A selection of Questions you should consider before Purchasing

      Are any of leasehold owners in dispute over their service charge payments? Plenty Small Heath leasehold apartments will incur a service bill for maintenance of the block invoiced by the freeholder. Where you buy the property you will have to meet this charge, usually quarterly accross the year. This can differ from a few hundred pounds to thousands of pounds for bigger purpose-built blocks. In all likelihood there will be a rentcharge for you to pay yearly, ordinarily this is not a exorbitant amount, say about £50-£100 but you need to enquire it because occasionally it can be many hundreds of pounds. How much is the ground rent and service charge?

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Small Heath