Top Five Questions relating to Somersham leasehold conveyancing
I only have Sixty One years remaining on my lease in Somersham. I now wish to get lease extension but my freeholder is missing. What options are available to me?
On the basis that you meet the appropriate requirements, 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 enable the lease to be granted an extra 90 years by the magistrate. You will be obliged to demonstrate that you or your lawyers have used your best endeavours to track down the landlord. For most situations an enquiry agent should be useful to conduct investigations and to produce an expert document which can be accepted by the court as evidence that the freeholder is indeed missing. It is wise to seek advice from a conveyancer both on investigating the landlord’s absence and the vesting order request to the County Court covering Somersham.
Back In 2005, I bought a leasehold flat in Somersham. Conveyancing and Coventry Building Society mortgage organised. I have received a letter from someone claiming to own the freehold. Attached was a ground rent demand for rent dating back to 1996. The conveyancing practitioner in Somersham who previously acted has long since retired.Do I pay?
First make enquiries of the Land Registry to be sure that the individual purporting to own the freehold is in fact the registered owner of the freehold reversion. There is no need to instruct a Somersham conveyancing lawyer to do this as it can be done on-line for less than a fiver. You should note that regardless, even if this is the legitimate landlord, under the Limitation Act 1980 the limitation period for recovery of ground rent is six years.
I am attracted to a couple of flats in Somersham 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 Somersham is a deteriorating asset as a result of the reducing lease term. The closer the lease gets to its expiry date, the more it reduces the salability of the premises. The majority of purchasers and banks, leases with less than eighty 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 property 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 Somersham 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 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 work for a reputable estate agency in Somersham where we have witnessed a number of leasehold sales put at risk as a result of short leases. I have received contradictory information from local Somersham conveyancing solicitors. Can you clarify whether the seller of a flat can commence the lease extension process for the buyer?
As long as the seller has owned the lease for at least 2 years it is possible, to serve a Section 42 notice to start the lease extension process and assign the benefit of the notice to the purchaser. The benefit of this is that the buyer need not have to wait 2 years for a lease extension. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment has to be done prior to, or simultaneously with completion of the disposal of the property.
An alternative approach is to agree the lease extension with the freeholder 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 purchaser.
If all goes to plan we aim to complete the sale of our £325000 garden flat in Somersham next week. The freeholder has quoted £300 for Landlord’s certificate, insurance certificate and previous years service charge statements. Is the landlord entitled to charge exorbitant fees for a flat conveyance in Somersham?
Somersham conveyancing on leasehold apartments normally involves the buyer’s conveyancer sending questions for the landlord to answer. Although the landlord is under no legal obligation to address such questions most will be content to do so. They are at liberty invoice a reasonable administration fee for answering questions or supplying documentation. There is no upper cap for such fees. The average costs for the paperwork that you are referring to is £350, in some situations it is in excess of £800. The administration charge levied by the landlord must be sent together with a synopsis of entitlements and obligations in relation to administration charges, without which the invoice is not strictly payable. In reality one has little choice but to pay whatever is demanded if you want to complete the sale of your home.
I am the registered owner of a studio flat in Somersham, conveyancing having been completed 1996. How much will my lease extension cost? Equivalent properties in Somersham with a long lease are worth £259,000. The ground rent is £60 charged once a year. The lease ceases on 21st October 2089
You have 68 years unexpired we estimate the price of your lease extension to be between £10,500 and £12,000 as well as costs.
The suggested premium range that we have given is a general guide to costs for renewing a lease, but we cannot give you a more accurate figure without more detailed investigations. You should not use this information in a Notice of Claim or as an informal offer. There may be additional concerns that need to be considered and clearly you want to be as accurate as possible in your negotiations. Neither should you take any other action based on this information without first getting professional advice.