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Swinton leasehold conveyancing: Q and A’s

I am intending to rent out my leasehold flat in Swinton. Conveyancing solicitor who did the purchase is retired - so can't ask him. Do I need to ask my freeholder for their consent?

The lease governs relations between the freeholder and you the flat owner; specifically, it will set out if subletting is banned, or permitted but only subject to certain conditions. The rule is that if the lease contains no expres ban or restriction, subletting is permitted. The majority of leases in Swinton do not contain subletting altogether – such a provision would undoubtedly devalue the property. In most cases there is simply a requirement that the owner notifies the freeholder, possibly sending a duplicate of the tenancy agreement.

I have recently realised that I have Fifty years unexpired on my lease in Swinton. I now wish to extend my lease but my landlord 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 submit an application to the County Court for for permission to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will mean that your lease can be granted an extra 90 years by the magistrate. You will be obliged to prove that you or your lawyers have used your best endeavours to locate the freeholder. In some cases a specialist should be useful to conduct investigations and to produce a report which can be used as evidence that the landlord is indeed missing. It is advisable to get professional help from a conveyancer both on investigating the landlord’s disappearance and the vesting order request to the County Court covering Swinton.

I own a leasehold flat in Swinton. Conveyancing and Coventry Building Society mortgage went though with no issue. A letter has just been received from someone saying they have taken over the freehold. Attached was a demand for arrears of ground rent dating back to 1992. The conveyancing practitioner in Swinton who previously acted has long since retired.What should I do?

First make enquiries of the Land Registry to make sure that the individual purporting to own the freehold is indeed the registered owner of the freehold reversion. You do not need to incur the fees of a Swinton conveyancing practitioner to do this as you can do this on the Land Registry website for £3. You should note that in any event, even if this is the legitimate freeholder, under the Limitation Act 1980 the limitation period for recovery of ground rent is six years.

What are your top tips when it comes to finding a Swinton conveyancing firm to carry out our lease extension conveyancing?

When appointing a solicitor for lease extension works (regardless if they are a Swinton conveyancing practice) it is imperative that they be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of work. We recommend that you speak with two or three firms including non Swinton conveyancing practices prior to instructing a firm. Where the conveyancing practice is ALEP accredited then so much the better. Some following of questions might be useful:

  • How many lease extensions has the firm conducted in Swinton in the last 12 months?
  • Can they put you in touch with client in Swinton who can give a testimonial?

  • What are the common problems that you see in leases for Swinton properties?

    There is nothing unique about leasehold conveyancing in Swinton. Most leases are unique and legal mistakes in the legal wording can sometimes mean that certain provisions are erroneous. For example, if your lease is missing any of the following, it could be defective:

    • Repairing obligations to or maintain elements of the property
    • Insurance obligations
    • Clauses dealing with recovering service charges for expenditure on the building or common parts.
    • Maintenance charge proportions which don’t add up to the correct percentage

    A defective lease will likely cause problems when trying to sell a property as they can affect a potential buyer’s ability to obtain a mortgage. Lloyds TSB Bank, Skipton Building Society, and Britannia all have very detailed requirements when it comes to what is expected in a lease. Where a lender has been advised by their lawyers that the lease does not cover certain provisions they may refuse to grant the mortgage, forcing the purchaser to withdraw.

    I inherited a studio flat in Swinton, conveyancing was carried out half a dozen years ago. Can you please calculate a probable premium for a statutory lease extension? Similar flats in Swinton with an extended lease are worth £198,000. The ground rent is £55 charged once a year. The lease comes to an end on 21st October 2089

    You have 67 years left to run we estimate the price of your lease extension to range between £12,400 and £14,200 as well as costs.

    The suggested premium range above a general guide to costs for renewing a lease, but we are not able to supply a more accurate figure without more detailed investigations. Do not use the figures in tribunal or court proceedings. There may be additional concerns that need to be considered and you obviously should be as accurate as possible in your negotiations. You should not move forward based on this information before getting professional advice.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Swinton