Experts for Leasehold Conveyancing in Torpoint

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Frequently asked questions relating to Torpoint leasehold conveyancing

I have just started marketing my ground floor flat in Torpoint.Conveyancing lawyers have not yet been instructed but I have just received a quarterly maintenance charge invoice – what should I do?

The sensible thing to do is discharge 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 Torpoint both have approximately forty five years remaining on the lease term. Should I regard a short lease as a deal breaker?

There are no two ways about it. A leasehold flat in Torpoint is a wasting asset as a result of the reducing lease term. The nearer the lease gets to its expiry date, the more it adversely affects the salability of the premises. The majority of purchasers and lenders, leases with under eighty 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 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 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 Torpoint 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 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 long established estate agent office in Torpoint where we have experienced a few leasehold sales derailed as a result of leases having less than 80 years remaining. I have been given conflicting advice from local Torpoint conveyancing firms. Can you shed some light as to whether the owner of a flat can start the lease extension formalities for the purchaser on completion of the sale?

Provided that the seller has owned the lease for at least 2 years it is possible, to serve a Section 42 notice to commence the lease extension process and assign the benefit of the notice to the purchaser. The benefit of this is that the proposed purchaser need not have to wait 2 years for a lease extension. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment needs to be completed before, 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.

Do you have any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in Torpoint with the aim of expediting the sale process?

  • Much of the frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Torpoint can be avoided where you instruct lawyers the minute your agents start advertising the property and ask them to put together the leasehold information which will be required by the buyers representatives.
  • If you have carried out any alterations to the property would they have required Landlord’s permission? In particular have you laid down wooden flooring? Torpoint leases often stipulate that internal structural changes or installing wooden flooring require a licence from the Landlord approving such works. Should you dont have the approvals in place do not communicate with the landlord without checking with your lawyer before hand.
  • Some Torpoint leases require Landlord’s consent to the sale and approval of the buyers. If this is the case, you should notify your estate agents to make sure that the purchasers obtain financial (bank) and professional references. The bank reference will need to confirm that the buyers are able to meet 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 buyers or their lawyers.
  • If you hold a share in a the Management Company, you should make sure that you have the original share certificate. Arranging a duplicate share certificate can be a time consuming formality and delays many a Torpoint home move. Where a reissued share is needed, do contact the company officers or managing agents (if applicable) for this as soon as possible.
  • You believe that you know the number of years remaining on your lease but it would be wise to double-check via your conveyancers. A purchaser's conveyancer will not be happy to advise their client to where the lease term is below 80 years. It is therefore important at an as soon as possible that you identify whether the lease for your property needs extending. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your property on the market for sale.

  • Are there frequently found problems that you see in leases for Torpoint properties?

    Leasehold conveyancing in Torpoint is not unique. All leases is drafted differently and legal mistakes in the legal wording can result in certain clauses are not included. For example, if your lease is missing any of the following, it could be defective:

    • A provision to repair to or maintain parts of the building
    • A duty to insure the building
    • Clauses dealing with recovering service charges for expenditure on the building or common parts.
    • Service charge per centages that don't add up correctly leaving a shortfall

    A defective lease will likely cause issues when trying to sell a property as they can affect a potential buyer’s ability to obtain a mortgage. Santander, Barnsley Building Society, and Britannia all have express conveyancing instructions when it comes to what is expected in a lease. Where a lender has been advised by their lawyers that the lease is defective they may refuse to provide security, obliging the purchaser to pull out.

    I am the registered owner of a leasehold flat in Torpoint, conveyancing formalities finalised in 2003. Can you shed any light on how much the price could be for a 90 year extension to my lease? Comparable properties in Torpoint with an extended lease are worth £221,000. The average or mid-range amount of ground rent is £60 yearly. The lease finishes on 21st October 2090

    With only 69 years remaining on your lease we estimate the price of your lease extension to be between £10,500 and £12,000 as well as plus your own and the landlord's "reasonable" professional fees.

    The suggested premium range above a general guide to costs for extending a lease, but we cannot give you the actual costs in the absence of detailed investigations. You should not use this information in tribunal or court proceedings. There are no doubt other issues that need to be taken into account and clearly you want to be as accurate as possible in your negotiations. Neither should you move forward placing reliance on this information before getting professional advice.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Torpoint