Questions and Answers: Wolviston leasehold conveyancing
There are only 72 years unexpired on my lease in Wolviston. I now wish to get lease extension but my freeholder is can not be found. What are my options?
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 an order 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 track down the freeholder. For most situations an enquiry agent should be helpful to carry out a search and to produce an expert document to be accepted by the court as evidence that the freeholder is indeed missing. It is wise to seek advice from a solicitor in relation to proving the landlord’s disappearance and the vesting order request to the County Court overseeing Wolviston.
Estate agents have just been given the go-ahead to market my 2 bed apartment in Wolviston.Conveyancing solicitors are to be appointed soon but I have just received a quarterly service charge invoice – Do I pay up?
It best that you clear 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 management companies 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 am tempted by the attractive purchase price for a couple of flats in Wolviston both have in the region of 50 years left on the leases. Should I regard a short lease as a deal breaker?
There are plenty of short leases in Wolviston. The lease is a right to use the premises for a prescribed time frame. As a lease gets shorter the saleability of the lease decreases and results in it becoming more costly to extend the lease. For this reason it is often a good idea to increase the term of the lease. More often than not it is difficult to sell a property with a short lease because mortgage companies less inclined to grant a loan on such properties. Lease extension can be a difficult process. We recommend you get professional help from a conveyancer and surveyor with experience in this area
Last month I purchased a leasehold property in Wolviston. Do I have any liability for 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).
I am a negotiator for a long established estate agency in Wolviston where we have experienced a number of leasehold sales derailed as a result of leases having less than 80 years remaining. I have been given inconsistent advice from local Wolviston conveyancing firms. Can you shed some light as to whether the owner of a flat can initiate the lease extension formalities for the buyer?
Provided that the seller has been the owner for at least 2 years it is possible, to serve a Section 42 notice to kick-start the lease extension process and assign the benefit of the notice to the purchaser. The benefit of this is that the buyer can avoid having to wait 2 years for a lease extension. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment needs to be completed before, or at the same time as completion of the sale.
Alternatively, it may be possible to agree the lease extension with the freeholder 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.
Wolviston Leasehold Conveyancing - Sample of Questions you should consider before Purchasing
Many Wolviston leasehold properties will have a service bill for maintenance of the block invoiced by the landlord. If you buy the apartment you will have to pay this liability, usually periodically during the year. This may differ from a couple of hundred pounds to thousands of pounds for large purpose-built buildings. In all probability there will be a ground rent to be met yearly, this is usually not a large sum, say around £25-£75 but you need to check as sometimes it could be many hundreds of pounds.
Does the lease have in excess of 85 years unexpired?
Best to be warned whether changing the roof or some other major work is due shortly that will be shared by the tenants and could well materially increase the the service fees or necessitate a specific invoice.