Questions and Answers: Wilmslow leasehold conveyancing
I am in need of some leasehold conveyancing in Wilmslow. Before diving in I want to be sure as to the remaining lease term.
If the lease is recorded at the land registry - and most are in Wilmslow - then the leasehold title will always include the short particulars of the lease, namely the date; the term; and the original parties. From a conveyancing perspective such details then enable any prospective buyer and lender to confirm that any lease they are looking at is the one relevant to that title.For any other purpose, such as confirming how long the term was granted for and calculating what is left, then the register should be sufficient on it's own.
Having checked my lease I have discovered that there are only 62 years remaining on my flat in Wilmslow. I now wish to get lease extension but my landlord is absent. What are my options?
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 an order to dispense with the service of the initial notice. This will enable the lease to be granted an extra 90 years by the Court. You will be obliged to prove that you have used your best endeavours to track down the lessor. For most situations a specialist should be helpful to carry out a search and prepare a report which can be accepted by the court as proof that the freeholder is indeed missing. It is advisable to get professional help from a property lawyer both on devolving into the landlord’s absence and the application to the County Court covering Wilmslow.
I work for a long established estate agent office in Wilmslow where we have witnessed a number of leasehold sales jeopardised due to leases having less than 80 years remaining. I have been given contradictory information from local Wilmslow conveyancing firms. Can you confirm whether the vendor of a flat can initiate the lease extension process for the purchaser on completion of the sale?
Provided that the seller has been the owner 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 sit tight for 2 years to extend their lease. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment has to be done before, or at the same time as completion of the sale.
An alternative approach is to extend the lease informally by agreement with the landlord 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.
Can you offer any advice when it comes to choosing a Wilmslow conveyancing practice to deal with our lease extension?
When appointing a property lawyer for your lease extension (regardless if they are a Wilmslow conveyancing firm) it is imperative that he or she should be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of work. We advise that you speak with two or three firms including non Wilmslow conveyancing practices prior to instructing a firm. If the firm is ALEP accredited then so much the better. Some following of questions might be useful:
- How experienced is the firm with lease extension legislation?
All being well we will complete the disposal of our £400000 flat in Wilmslow in just under a week. The freeholder has quoted £408 for Landlord’s certificate, insurance certificate and 3 years statements of service charge. Is it legal for a freeholder to charge an administration fee for a leasehold conveyance in Wilmslow?
Wilmslow conveyancing on leasehold flats more often than not necessitates the purchaser’s lawyer sending questions for the landlord to address. Although the landlord is under no legal obligation to respond to such questions most will be willing to assist. They may levy a reasonable charge for answering enquiries or supplying documentation. There is no upper cap for such fees. The average costs for the information that you are referring to is £350, in some cases it exceeds £800. The administration charge invoiced by the landlord must be accompanied by a summary of rights and obligations in relation to administration fees, without which the charge is technically not due. In reality you have little choice but to pay whatever is demanded should you wish to sell the property.
Wilmslow Leasehold Conveyancing - A selection of Questions you should ask Prior to Purchasing
Many Wilmslow leasehold properties will be liable to pay a service charge for the upkeep of the block levied on behalf of the freeholder. If you purchase the property you will have to pay this liability, normally in instalments accross the year. This may differ from a couple of hundred pounds to thousands of pounds for bigger purpose-built blocks. There will also be a rentcharge to be met yearly, normally this is not a significant figure, say around £25-£75 but you should to enquire as on occasion it can be surprisingly expensive.
You should want to discover as much as possible concerning the managing agents as they can either make your living at the property much simpler or uncomfortable. Being a leasehold owner you are frequently at the mercy of the managing agents both financially and when it comes to practical matters like the cleanliness of the communal areas. Ask other tenants whether they are happy with them. On a final note, be sure you discover the dates that you are obliged pay the service charge to the managing agents and specifically how they are spending the funds.
Who takes charge for maintaining and repairing the building?