Frequently asked questions relating to Stamford Bridge leasehold conveyancing
I want to let out my leasehold apartment in Stamford Bridge. Conveyancing solicitor who did the purchase is retired - so can't ask her. Is permission from the freeholder required?
Notwithstanding that your previous Stamford Bridge conveyancing lawyer is no longer around you can review your lease to see if you are permitted to let out the premises. The rule is that if the deeds are silent, subletting is allowed. There may be a precondition that you are obliged to obtain consent from your landlord or other appropriate person prior to subletting. This means you not allowed to sublet without prior permission. The consent is not allowed to be unreasonably turned down. If your lease does not allow you to sublet you should ask your landlord for their consent.
Estate agents have just been given the go-ahead to market my basement apartment in Stamford Bridge.Conveyancing solicitors are to be appointed soon but I have just had a half-yearly maintenance charge invoice – Do I pay up?
Your conveyancing lawyer is likely to suggest that you should clear the service charge as normal because all ground rent and service charges will be apportioned on completion, so you will be reimbursed by the buyer for the period running from after the completion date to the next payment date. Most managing agents will not acknowledge the buyer unless the service charges have been paid and are up to date so it is important for both buyer and seller for the seller to show that they are up to date. Having a clear account will assist your cause and will leave you no worse off financially.
I am tempted by the attractive purchase price for a two apartments in Stamford Bridge both have approximately forty five years left on the lease term. Should I regard a short lease as a deal breaker?
There is no doubt about it. A leasehold apartment in Stamford Bridge is a wasting asset as a result of the shortening lease. The nearer the lease gets to zero years unexpired, the more it adversely affects the salability of the premises. The majority of buyers and banks, leases with less than 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 Stamford Bridge conveyancing experts who will explain the options available to you during an initial telephone conversation free of charge. More often than not it is possible to negotiate informally with the freeholder to extend 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 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 am employed by a long established estate agent office in Stamford Bridge where we have experienced a few leasehold sales put at risk as a result of short leases. I have received contradictory information from local Stamford Bridge conveyancing solicitors. Please can you clarify whether the seller of a flat can instigate the lease extension process for the buyer?
As long as the seller has been the owner 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 can avoid having to sit tight for 2 years to extend their lease. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment needs to be completed before, or at the same time as completion of the sale.
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 purchaser.
What advice can you give us when it comes to finding a Stamford Bridge conveyancing practice to carry out our lease extension conveyancing?
When appointing a solicitor for lease extension works (regardless if they are a Stamford Bridge conveyancing practice) it is essential that he or she should be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of conveyancing. We suggested that you make enquires with two or three firms including non Stamford Bridge conveyancing practices before you instructing a firm. Where the conveyancing practice is ALEP accredited then that’s a bonus. Some following of questions could be of use:
- How familiar is the practice with lease extension legislation?
I purchased a garden flat in Stamford Bridge, conveyancing was carried out half a dozen years ago. Can you let me have an estimated range of the fair premium for a lease extension? Equivalent flats in Stamford Bridge with over 90 years remaining are worth £166,000. The average or mid-range amount of ground rent is £50 invoiced every year. The lease ends on 21st October 2078
With only 56 years left to run we estimate the premium for your lease extension to range between £23,800 and £27,400 as well as plus your own and the landlord's "reasonable" professional fees.
The figure that we have given is a general guide to costs for renewing a lease, but we cannot give you the actual costs in the absence of detailed investigations. Do not use this information in tribunal or court proceedings. There may be additional issues that need to be considered and clearly you should be as accurate as possible in your negotiations. Please do not take any other action based on this information before seeking the advice of a professional.