Fixed-fee leasehold conveyancing in Walkington:

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Top Five Questions relating to Walkington leasehold conveyancing

Helen (my wife) and I may need to sub-let our Walkington ground floor flat for a while due to taking a sabbatical. We instructed a Walkington conveyancing practice in 2001 but they have closed and we did not think at the time seek any advice as to whether the lease allows us to sublet. How do we find out?

Even though your previous Walkington conveyancing lawyer is no longer around you can review your lease to see if it allows you to sublet the premises. The accepted inference is that if the deeds are silent, subletting is permitted. There may be a precondition that you must seek consent from your landlord or other appropriate person before subletting. The net result is you not allowed to sublet without prior permission. Such consent is not allowed to be unreasonably withheld. If the lease prohibits you from letting out the property you should ask your landlord for their consent.

Due to complete next month on a ground floor flat in Walkington. Conveyancing lawyers inform me that they will have a report out to me tomorrow. Are there areas in the report that I should be focusing on?

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

  • Setting out your legal entitlements in respect of the communal areas in the building.For example, does the lease contain a right of way over an accessway or staircase?
  • Do you need to have carpet in the flat or are you allowed wood flooring?
  • Ground rent - how much and when you need to pay, and also know whether this will change in the future
  • Whether your lease has a provision for a reserve 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
  • Whether the landlord has obligations to ensure rights of quiet enjoyment over your premises and do you know what it means in practice?
  • Responsibility for repairing the window frames For a comprehensive list of information to be contained in your report on your leasehold property in Walkington please enquire of your solicitor in ahead of your conveyancing in Walkington

  • I am a negotiator for a reputable estate agent office in Walkington where we have witnessed a number of flat sales put at risk due to short leases. I have been given inconsistent advice from local Walkington conveyancing firms. Can you clarify whether the vendor of a flat can instigate the lease extension formalities 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 proposed purchaser can avoid having to wait 2 years for a lease extension. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment has to be done before, or simultaneously with completion of the disposal of the property.

    Alternatively, it may be possible 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 Walkington from the perspective of saving time on the sale process?

    • A significant proportion of the frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Walkington can be bypassed if you get in touch lawyers as soon as your agents start advertising the property and ask them to collate the leasehold information which will be required by the buyers conveyancers.
    • Many freeholders or Management Companies in Walkington charge for providing management packs for a leasehold property. You or your lawyers should find out the fee that they propose to charge. The management information can be applied for as soon as you have a buyer, thus accelerating the process. The average time it takes to receive management information is three weeks. It is the most common cause of delay in leasehold conveyancing in Walkington.
  • In the event that you altered the property did you need the Landlord’s permission? Have you, for example laid down wooden flooring? Most leases in Walkington state that internal structural alterations or laying down wooden flooring calls for a licence from the Landlord consenting to such works. Should you fail to have the approvals to hand do not communicate with the landlord without contacting your solicitor before hand.
  • A minority of Walkington 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 bank and professional references. Any bank reference should make it clear that the buyer is 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 service charge figures so that they can pass this information on to the buyers or their solicitors.
  • If you have had conflict with your freeholder or managing agents it is very important that these are resolved prior to the flat being put on the market. The purchasers and their solicitors will be warry about purchasing a property where there is an ongoing dispute. You may need to swallow your pride and discharge any arrears of service charge or settle the dispute prior to completion of the sale. It is therefore preferable to have any dispute settled ahead of the contract papers being issued to the buyers’ solicitors. You are still duty bound to disclose particulars of the dispute to the buyers, but it is clearly preferable to reveal the dispute as historic as opposed to ongoing.

  • What are the common problems that you witness in leases for Walkington properties?

    Leasehold conveyancing in Walkington is not unique. Most leases is drafted differently and drafting errors can sometimes mean that certain sections are wrong. The following missing provisions could result in a defective lease:

    • A provision to repair to or maintain elements of the building
    • 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

    You may encounter difficulties when selling your property if you have a defective lease primarily because it impacts on the ability to obtain a mortgage on the property. Accord Mortgages Ltd, Coventry 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 is defective they may refuse to grant the mortgage, obliging the buyer to withdraw.

    I purchased a basement flat in Walkington, conveyancing having been completed half a dozen years ago. How much will my lease extension cost? Comparable properties in Walkington with an extended lease are worth £235,000. The ground rent is £55 per annum. The lease ends on 21st October 2085

    With just 63 years unexpired we estimate the price of your lease extension to span between £18,100 and £20,800 plus costs.

    The figure above a general guide to costs for renewing a lease, but we are not able to supply a more accurate figure in the absence of detailed investigations. You should not use the figures in a Notice of Claim or as an informal offer. There are no doubt other issues that need to be taken into account and you obviously want to be as accurate as possible in your negotiations. You should not take any other action based on this information before getting professional advice.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Walkington