Recently asked questions relating to Whimple leasehold conveyancing
There are only Seventy years unexpired on my lease in Whimple. I need to extend my lease but my landlord is can not be found. What options are available to me?
On the basis that you qualify, 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. However, you will be required to demonstrate that you have made all reasonable attempts to find the landlord. For most situations an enquiry agent would be useful to try and locate and to produce a report to be used as proof that the freeholder can not be located. It is advisable to get professional help from a solicitor both on investigating the landlord’s disappearance and the vesting order request to the County Court overseeing Whimple.
I have just started marketing my ground floor apartment in Whimple.Conveyancing solicitors are to be appointed soon but I have just had a half-yearly service charge invoice – Do I pay up?
The sensible thing to do is pay 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.
Last month I purchased a leasehold house in Whimple. Am I liable to pay service charges relating to a period prior to my ownership?
Where the service charge has already been demanded from the previous owner and they have not paid you would not usually be personally liable for the arrears. Strange as it may seem, your landlord may still be able to take action to forfeit the lease. It is an essential part of leasehold conveyancing for your conveyancer to be sure 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 offer any advice when it comes to choosing a Whimple conveyancing firm to carry out our lease extension conveyancing?
If you are instructing a conveyancer for lease extension works (regardless if they are a Whimple conveyancing practice) it is most important that they be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of conveyancing. We recommend that you talk with several firms including non Whimple 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 helpful:
- How experienced is the firm with lease extension legislation?
All being well we will complete our sale of a £275000 apartment in Whimple next Tuesday . The landlords agents has quoted £384 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 leasehold conveyance in Whimple?
Whimple conveyancing on leasehold apartments normally requires the buyer’s solicitor submitting enquiries for the landlord to address. Although the landlord is not legally bound to respond to these enquiries most will be content to assist. They may levy a reasonable administration fee for answering questions or supplying documentation. There is no upper cap for such fees. The average fee for the information that you are referring to is over three hundred pounds, in some transactions it is above £800. The management information fee demanded by the landlord must be sent together with a summary of entitlements and obligations in relation to administration fees, without which the charge is technically not due. Reality however dictates that you have no option but to pay whatever is demanded if you want to exchange contracts with the buyer.
Whimple Conveyancing for Leasehold Flats - Examples of Questions you should consider Prior to buying
What is the name of the managing agents?
Are any of leasehold owners in dispute over their service charge liability?
It would be sensible to discover as much as you can concerning the managing agents as they will either make your life much easier or much more difficult. As the owner of a leasehold property you are often in the clutches of the managing agents both financially and when it comes to day to day issues such as the tidiness of the common parts. Ask other people if they are happy with their management. Finally, investigate as to the dates that you are obliged pay the maintenance charge to the managing agents and specifically how they are spending that money.