Fixed-fee leasehold conveyancing in Witham:

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Recently asked questions relating to Witham leasehold conveyancing

I am on look out for some leasehold conveyancing in Witham. Before diving in I would like to find out the number of years remaining on the lease.

If the lease is recorded at the land registry - and 99.9% are in Witham - then the leasehold title will always include the basic details 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 only have 62 years unexpired on my lease in Witham. I am keen to extend my lease but my landlord is absent. What should I do?

If you meet the appropriate requirements, 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 enable the lease to be extended by the magistrate. You will be obliged to prove that you or your lawyers have done all that could be expected to track down the landlord. On the whole an enquiry agent may be helpful to conduct investigations and to produce a report to be used as proof that the landlord is indeed missing. It is advisable to get professional help from a property lawyer both on proving the landlord’s absence and the application to the County Court covering Witham.

I am tempted by the attractive purchase price for a two flats in Witham both have approximately 50 years unexpired on the lease term. Should I regard a short lease as a deal breaker?

There are no two ways about it. A leasehold flat in Witham is a deteriorating asset as a result of the reducing lease term. The nearer the lease gets to zero years unexpired, the more it reduces the salability of the premises. The majority of purchasers and lenders, leases with less than 75 years become less and less marketable. On a more upbeat note, leaseholders can extend their leases by serving a Section 42 Notice. One stipulation is that they must have owned the premises for two years (unlike a Section 13 notice for purchasing the freehold, when leaseholders can participate from day one of ownership). When successful, they will have the right to an extension of 90 years to the current term and ground rent is effectively reduced to zero. Before moving forward with a purchase of property with a short lease term remaining you should talk to a solicitor specialising in lease extensions and leasehold enfranchisement. We are are happy to put you in touch with Witham conveyancing experts who will explain the options available to you during an initial telephone conversation free of charge. More often than not it is possible to negotiate informally with the freeholder to extend the lease They may agree to a smaller lump sum and an increase in the ground rent, but to shorter extension terms in return. You need to ensure that the agreed terms represent good long-term value compared with the standard benefits of the Section 42 Notice and that onerous clauses are not inserted into any redrafting of the lease.

What are your top tips when it comes to choosing a Witham conveyancing practice to carry out our lease extension conveyancing?

If you are instructing a conveyancer for lease extension works (regardless if they are a Witham conveyancing firm) it is most important that he or she should be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of conveyancing. We advise that you make enquires with two or three firms including non Witham conveyancing practices prior to instructing a firm. If the firm is ALEP accredited then so much the better. Some following of questions might be of use:

  • If they are not ALEP accredited then why not?
  • What are the costs for lease extension conveyancing?

  • Do you have any advice for leasehold conveyancing in Witham from the perspective of speeding up the sale process?

    • Much of the frustration in leasehold conveyancing in Witham can be avoided where you appoint lawyers the minute you market your property and ask them to collate the leasehold information which will be required by the purchasers’ conveyancers.
    • Many landlords or Management Companies in Witham charge for providing management packs for a leasehold homes. You or your lawyers should discover the actual amount of the charges. The management pack can be applied for as soon as you have a buyer, thus accelerating the process. The typical amount of time it takes to receive management information is three weeks. It is the most common cause of delay in leasehold conveyancing in Witham.
  • A minority of Witham leases require Landlord’s consent to the sale and approval of the buyers. 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 will need to confirm that the buyers are able to meet 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 have the benefit of shareholding in the freehold, you should make sure that you hold the original share document. Obtaining a new share certificate is often a time consuming process and frustrates many a Witham home move. Where a reissued share certificate is necessary, you should approach the company officers or managing agents (where relevant) for this at the earliest opportunity.
  • You may think that you are aware of the number of years remaining on your lease but you should verify this via your conveyancers. A buyer’s conveyancer will be unlikely to recommend their client to to exchange contracts if the remaining number of years is under 80 years. It is therefore important at an as soon as possible that you consider whether the lease term requires a lease extension. If it does, contact your solicitors before you put your property on the market for sale.

  • Leasehold Conveyancing in Witham - Examples of Queries before buying

      Can you tell me if there are any major works anticipated that could add a premium to the maintenance charges? Does the lease have onerous restrictions? The answer will be useful as a) areas may cause problems for the block as the communal areas may start to deteriorate if repairs are not paid for b) if the tenants have a dispute with the running of the building you will want to have all the details

    Other Topics

    Lease Extensions in Witham