Guaranteed fixed fees for Leasehold Conveyancing in West London

While any conveyancing practice can theoretically deal with your leasehold conveyancing in West London, your mortgage provider may unwilling to work with them if the firm are not on their list of approved solicitors for conveyancing

Top Five Questions relating to West London leasehold conveyancing

I only have 72 years unexpired on my lease in West London. I now wish to extend my lease but my landlord is missing. What are my options?

If 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. However, you will be required to prove that you have made all reasonable attempts to track down the lessor. For most situations a specialist would be helpful to try and locate and to produce a report to be used as evidence that the landlord can not be located. It is wise to seek advice from a conveyancer in relation to devolving into the landlord’s absence and the vesting order request to the County Court covering West London.

I am looking at a couple of maisonettes in West London which have in the region of fifty years left on the lease term. Will this present a problem?

A lease is a right to use the premises for a prescribed time frame. As the lease shortens the value of the lease decreases and results in it becoming more expensive to acquire a lease extension. For this reason it is often a good idea to extend the lease term. More often than not it is difficult to sell a property with a short lease as mortgage companies may be unwilling to lend money on properties of this type. Lease enfranchisement can be a difficult process. We recommend you get professional help from a solicitor and surveyor with experience in this field

Last month I purchased a leasehold property in West London. Am I liable to pay service charges for periods before completion of my purchase?

In a situation where the service charge has already been demanded from the previous lessee and they have not paid you would not usually be personally liable for the arrears. However, your landlord may still be able to take action to forfeit the lease. A critical element of leasehold conveyancing for your conveyancer to ensure to have an up to date clear service charge receipt before completion of your purchase. If you have a mortgage this is likely to be a requirement of your lender.

If you purchase part way through an accounting year you may be liable for charges not yet demanded even if they relate to a period prior to your purchase. In such circumstances your conveyancer would normally arrange for the seller to set aside some money to cover their part of the period (usually called a service charge retention).

Can you provide any advice for leasehold conveyancing in West London with the aim of saving time on the sale process?

  • A significant proportion of the delay in leasehold conveyancing in West London can be reduced if you get in touch lawyers as soon as your agents start advertising the property and ask them to put together the leasehold documentation needed by the buyers lawyers.
  • The majority landlords or managing agents in West London levy fees for providing management packs for a leasehold premises. You or your lawyers should enquire as to the fee that they propose to charge. The management information can be applied for as soon as you have a buyer, thus reducing delays. The typical amount of time it takes to receive management information is three weeks. It is the most frequent reason for delay in leasehold conveyancing in West London.
  • If you have carried out any alterations to the premises would they have required Landlord’s consent? In particular have you installed wooden flooring? Most leases in West London state that internal structural changes or addition of wooden flooring necessitate a licence from the Landlord approving such works. If you fail to have the paperwork in place you should not communicate with the landlord without contacting your solicitor in advance.
  • If there is a history of conflict with your freeholder or managing agents it is essential that these are settled before the property is put on the market. The purchasers and their solicitors will be reluctant to purchase a flat where there is a current dispute. You may need to swallow your pride and pay any arrears of service charge or resolve the dispute prior to the buyers completing the purchase. It is therefore preferable to have any dispute settled prior to the contract papers being issued to the buyers’ solicitors. You are still duty bound to disclose details of the dispute to the buyers, but it is clearly preferable to present the dispute as historic as opposed to unsettled.
  • If you have the benefit of shareholding in the freehold, you should ensure that you are holding the original share certificate. Arranging a re-issued share certificate can be a time consuming process and slows down many a West London conveyancing deal. If a duplicate share is necessary, do contact the company officers or managing agents (if applicable) for this sooner rather than later.

  • Completion in due on our sale of a £225000 garden flat in West London next Friday . The management company has quoted £312 for Certificate of Compliance, building insurance schedule and 3 years statements of service charge. Is it legal for a freeholder to charge exorbitant fees for a flat conveyance in West London?

    West London conveyancing on leasehold maisonettes usually involves fees being invoiced by freeholders :

    • Addressing pre-exchange enquiries
    • Where consent is required before sale in West London
    • Supplying insurance information
    • Deeds of covenant upon sale
    • Registering of the assignment of the change of lessee after a sale
    Your conveyancer will have no control over the level of the charges for this information but the average costs for the information for West London leasehold property is £350. For West London conveyancing transactions it is customary for the seller to pay for these costs. The landlord or their agents are under no legal obligation to answer such questions most will be willing to do so - albeit often at exorbitant prices where the fees bear little relation to the work involved. Unfortunately there is no law that requires fixed charges for administrative tasks. Neither is there any legal time frame by which they are obliged to provide answers.

    My wife and I have hit a brick wall in negotiating a lease extension in West London. Can this matter be resolved via the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal?

    if there is a absentee landlord or if there is dispute about what the lease extension should cost, under the relevant statutes it is possible to make an application to the LVT to assess the sum to be paid.

    An example of a Lease Extension matter before the tribunal for a West London property is 137 & 139 Haberdasher Street in December 2013. The Tribunal determines in accordance with section 48 and Schedule 13 of the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 that the premium for the extended lease for each Property should be £12,350.00. This case affected 2 flats. The unexpired term was 72.39 years.

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in West London