Experts for Leasehold Conveyancing in Wisbech

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Common questions relating to Wisbech leasehold conveyancing

I am in need of some leasehold conveyancing in Wisbech. Before I get started I require certainty as to the remaining lease term.

If the lease is recorded at the land registry - and most are in Wisbech - 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.

I’m about to sell my 2 bed flat in Wisbech.Conveyancing solicitors are to be appointed soon but I have just received a half-yearly maintenance charge demand – Do I pay up?

The sensible thing to do is clear the invoice 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 until 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. This will smooth the conveyancing process.

I've recently bought a leasehold house in Wisbech. Am I liable to pay service charges for periods before my ownership?

In a situation 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 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).

I am employed by a reputable estate agent office in Wisbech where we see a few leasehold sales put at risk as a result of leases having less than 80 years remaining. I have received conflicting advice from local Wisbech conveyancing solicitors. Could you confirm whether the owner of a flat can commence 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 commence the lease extension process and assign the benefit of the notice to the purchaser. The benefit of this is that the buyer need not have to wait 2 years to extend their lease. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment needs to be completed before, or simultaneously with 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 buyer.

Do you have any advice for leasehold conveyancing in Wisbech from the point of view of speeding up the sale process?

  • A significant proportion of the frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Wisbech can be avoided if you get in touch lawyers as soon as your agents start marketing the property and request that they start to put together the leasehold information needed by the purchasers’ representatives.
  • Many landlords or managing agents in Wisbech charge for providing management packs for a leasehold premises. You or your lawyers should enquire as to the actual amount of the charges. The management information sought on or before finding a buyer, thus accelerating the process. 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 Wisbech.
  • Some Wisbech leases require Landlord’s consent to the sale and approval of the buyers. If this applies to your lease, you should place the estate agents on notice to make sure that the purchasers put in hand financial (bank) and professional references. The bank reference will need to confirm that the buyers are financially capable of paying the yearly 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 solicitors.
  • If you are supposed to have a share in the Management Company, you should make sure that you have the original share certificate. Organising a new share certificate can be a time consuming formality and delays many a Wisbech conveyancing deal. If a reissued share is necessary, you should approach the company director and secretary or managing agents (if applicable) for this at the earliest opportunity.
  • You believe that you know the number of years remaining on your lease but it would be advisable double-check via your solicitors. A purchaser's lawyer will not be happy to advise their client to where the remaining number of years is under 80 years. In the circumstances it is important at an early stage that you consider whether the lease term for your property needs extending. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your premises on the market for sale.

  • Wisbech Leasehold Conveyancing - A selection of Queries Prior to Purchasing

      Who is in charge of the building? It would be sensible to discover as much as possible concerning the company managing the building as they will impact your use and enjoyment of the property. As the proprietor of a leasehold property you will be in the clutches of the managing agents from a financial perspective and when it comes to day to day matters like the tidiness of the communal areas. Enquire of other tenants if they are happy with their service. Finally, be sure you know the dates that you are obliged pay the service charge to the appropriate party and precisely what you get for your money. How much is the ground rent and service charge?

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Wisbech