Smithfield leasehold conveyancing: Q and A’s
Harry (my fiance) and I may need to sub-let our Smithfield garden flat temporarily due to a career opportunity. We used a Smithfield conveyancing firm in 2002 but they have closed and we did not have the foresight to seek any guidance as to whether the lease prohibits the subletting of the flat. How do we find out?
Notwithstanding that your previous Smithfield conveyancing solicitor is no longer around you can review your lease to check if you are permitted to let out the apartment. The rule is that if the deeds are silent, subletting is permitted. There may be a precondition that you need to seek consent from your landlord or other appropriate person before subletting. The net result is that you cannot sublet in the absence of prior consent. Such consent is not allowed to be unreasonably turned down. If the lease does not allow you to sublet you should ask your landlord for their consent.
Having checked my lease I have discovered that there are only 62 years remaining on my flat in Smithfield. I am keen to extend my lease but my landlord is absent. What are my options?
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 lengthened by the Court. You will be obliged to demonstrate that you or your lawyers have done all that could be expected to locate the lessor. On the whole a specialist should be useful to try and locate and to produce a report which can be accepted by the court as proof that the landlord is indeed missing. It is wise to seek advice from a solicitor both on investigating the landlord’s disappearance and the application to the County Court overseeing Smithfield.
Expecting to complete next month on a basement flat in Smithfield. Conveyancing solicitors have said that they report fully on Monday. What should I be looking out for?
Your report on title for your leasehold conveyancing in Smithfield should include some of the following:
- You should receive a copy of the lease
What advice can you give us when it comes to appointing a Smithfield conveyancing firm to deal with our lease extension?
When appointing a conveyancer for lease extension works (regardless if they are a Smithfield conveyancing firm) it is imperative that he or she should be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of conveyancing. We recommend that you talk with several firms including non Smithfield conveyancing practices before you instructing a firm. If the firm is ALEP accredited then that’s a bonus. Some following of questions could be helpful:
- How familiar is the practice with lease extension legislation?
Our conveyancer has advised that he intends to complete and exchange simultaneously on our sale of a £225000 apartment in Smithfield next Monday . The managing agents has quoted £408 for Certificate of Compliance, insurance certificate and previous years service charge statements. Is the landlord entitled to charge an administration fee for a leasehold conveyance in Smithfield?
Smithfield conveyancing on leasehold flats normally necessitates fees being raised by management companies :
- Answering pre-contract enquiries
- Where consent is required before sale in Smithfield
- Copies of the building insurance and schedule
- Deeds of covenant upon sale
- Registering of the assignment of the change of lessee after a sale
Smithfield Conveyancing for Leasehold Flats - A selection of Queries before Purchasing
Can you inform me if there are any major works in the near future that will add a premium to the service charges?
The majority of Smithfield leasehold properties will have a service charge for maintenance of the building invoiced by the landlord. If you acquire the apartment you will have to pay this amount, normally in instalments throughout the year. This can differ from a couple of hundred pounds to thousands of pounds for buildings with lifts and large communal areas. In all likelihood there will be a ground rent to be met yearly, this is usually not a exorbitant sum, say around £25-£75 but you need to enquire it because on occasion it can be prohibitively expensive.
Who manages the block?