Leasehold Conveyancing in Smithfield - Get a Quote from the leasehold experts approved by your lender

While any conveyancing practice can theoretically deal with your leasehold conveyancing in Smithfield, your mortgage provider may unwilling to work with them if the firm are not on their list of approved solicitors for conveyancing

Smithfield leasehold conveyancing: Q and A’s

Having had my offer accepted I require leasehold conveyancing in Smithfield. Before I set the wheels in motion I require certainty as to the remaining lease term.

If the lease is registered - and most are in Smithfield - 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.

Looking forward to exchange soon on a basement flat in Smithfield. Conveyancing solicitors assured me that they are sending me a report tomorrow. Are there areas in the report that I should be focusing on?

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

  • Details of the parties to the lease, for example these could be the leaseholder (you), head lessor, landlord
  • Defining your rights in respect of the communal areas in the block.For instance, does the lease permit a right of way over a path or hallways?
  • Whether the lease restricts you from renting out the property, or having a home office for business
  • Whether your lease has a provision for a sinking fund?
  • I don't know whether the lease allows me to alter or improve anything in the flat - you should know whether it applies to all alterations or just structural alteration, and whether consent is required
  • Responsibility for repairing the window frames
  • What options are open to you if a neighbour is in violation of a provision in their lease? For details of the information to be contained in your report on your leasehold property in Smithfield please ask your conveyancer in advance of your conveyancing in Smithfield

  • I am attracted to a couple of maisonettes in Smithfield which have approximately 50 years left on the lease term. should I be concerned?

    There are no two ways about it. A leasehold flat in Smithfield is a wasting asset as a result of the shortening lease. The closer the lease gets to its expiry date, the more it adversely affects the marketability of the premises. For most buyers and banks, leases with under 75 years become less and less attractive. 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 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 Smithfield 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 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.

    I've recently bought a leasehold flat in Smithfield. Do I have any liability for service charges for periods before 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. A critical element 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).

    Can you provide any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in Smithfield from the perspective of expediting the sale process?

    • Much of the delay in leasehold conveyancing in Smithfield can be reduced if you appoint lawyers the minute your agents start advertising the property and ask them to put together the leasehold documentation which will be required by the purchasers’ representatives.
    • Many freeholders or managing agents in Smithfield charge for providing management packs for a leasehold homes. You or your lawyers should find out the actual amount of the charges. The management information can be applied for on or before finding a buyer, thus reducing delays. The average time it takes to obtain the necessary information is three weeks. It is the most usual cause of delay in leasehold conveyancing in Smithfield.
  • Some Smithfield leases require Licence to Assign from the landlord. If this is the case, it would be prudent to notify your estate agents to make sure that the purchasers put in hand financial (bank) and professional references. Any bank reference should make it clear that the buyer is financially capable of paying 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 actual amount of the service charge so that they can pass this information on to the purchasers or their solicitors.
  • If you have the benefit of shareholding in the freehold, you should make sure that you have the original share document. Organising a replacement share certificate is often a lengthy formality and slows down many a Smithfield conveyancing deal. If a reissued share is needed, you should approach the company officers or managing agents (where relevant) for this at the earliest opportunity.
  • You believe that you know the number of years left on your lease but you should verify this via your lawyers. A buyer’s conveyancer will be unlikely to recommend their client to to exchange contracts if the remaining number of years is under 80 years. It is therefore essential at an as soon as possible that you consider whether the lease term for your property needs extending. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your property on the market for sale.

  • Smithfield Conveyancing for Leasehold Flats - A selection of Questions you should ask Prior to buying

      Best to be warned if fixing the lift or some other major work is pending to be shared by the leaseholders and may well materially increase the the service fees or require a one time invoice. Does the lease contain onerous restrictions? How many years are left on the lease?

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Smithfield