We are a couple about to sign contracts for a garden flat in Darnall. We have hit a problem. The mortgage offer with TSB expires on 27/8/2020 but the owners are suggesting a completion date of 1/9/2020. Can one prolong the mortgage offer?
The person best placed to deal with your question is your conveyancer who should calculate if they better off negotiating with the mortgage company, seller’s representatives, selling agents or conceivably all three based on what has happend in your transaction to date.
We previously selected solicitors based in Darnall on the Barclays solicitor panel. They have just billed me an additional sum for handling the Barclays mortgage. Is this a supplemental conveyancing fee set by Barclays?
As unfair as it may seem, as long as it’s in their Terms of Engagement or estimate then yes your solicitor can levy a fee for this. The fee is not set by Barclays but by your Darnall conveyancing practitioner. Some firms on the Barclays panel will charge an ‘acting for lender’ fee and others do not.
I can not fathom if my bank obliges me to make sure the lease term for the flat is extended prior to the completion date. I have called into my local Darnall bank branch on numerous occasions and was told it wasn't an issue and they would lend. My Darnall conveyancing solicitor - who is on the lender conveyancing panel- telephoned and was told they will not lend based on their UK Finance Lenders’ Handbook minimum lease term requirements. I simply don't know who is right.
The lawyer has to comply with the CML Handbook Part 2 specifications for your lender. Unless your lawyer obtains specific confirmation in writing that the mortgage company will go ahead, your lawyer has no choice but to refrain from exchanging contract and committing you to the purchase. We would suggest that you ask the lender to contact your lawyer in writing confirming that they will accept the number of years remaining.
Having digested plenty of house buying guides, I note that they all recommend that you should get your house surveyed prior to buying it. When I asked my local Darnall solicitor - who is on the UBS conveyancing panel - on this she said they don't do this and I need to contract an independent surveyor. Is that normal?
UBS will need an independent valuation of the property. Your lawyer will not arrange this. Usually UBS will appoint their own surveyor to do this, and you will have to pay for it. Remember that this is a valuation for mortgage purposes and not a survey. Your property lawyer will not organise the survey but they may be able to put you in touch with a local one that they recommend. RICS offers a find a surveyor service (just google it) where you can search for a qualified surveyor by your Darnall postcode. As you are getting a mortgage with UBS, you could contact them to see if they have a list of approved surveyors in Darnall.
My friend advised me that if I am buying in Darnall I should ask my conveyancer to execute a Neighbourhood, Planning and Local Amenity Search. What does it cover?
This is a search is occasionally quoted for as part of the standard Darnall conveyancing searches. It is a large report of about 40 pages, listing and setting out important information about Darnall around the property and the people living there. It includes an Aerial Photograph, Planning Applications, Land Use, Mobile Phone Masts, Rights of Way, the Darnall Housing Market, Council Tax Banding, the demographics of People living in the area, the dominant type of Housing, the Average House Prices, Crime details, Local Education with plans and statistics, Local Amenities and other useful information regarding Darnall.
How does the Landlord & Tenant Act 1954 affect my business premises in Darnall and how can your lawyers assist?
The 1954 Act provides security of tenure to commercial lessees, giving them the legal entitlement to apply to court for a continuation of occupancy at the end of the lease term. There are certain specified grounds that a landlord can refrain from granting a lease renewal and the rules are involved. Fees are different for commercial conveyancing. Darnall is one of our many locations in which our lawyers are located
What advice can you give us when it comes to finding a Darnall conveyancing practice to deal with our lease extension?
When appointing a property lawyer for lease extension works (regardless if they are a Darnall conveyancing practice) it is imperative that they be familiar with the legislation and specialises in this area of work. We recommend that you speak with several firms including non Darnall conveyancing practices before you instructing a firm. If the firm is ALEP accredited then so much the better. The following questions could be of use:
What volume of lease extensions has the firm completed in Darnall in the last 12 months? How familiar is the firm with lease extension legislation?
Darnall Conveyancing for Leasehold Flats - Sample of Queries Prior to buying
For most Darnall leaseholds the cost for major works are not incorporated into the service charges, albeit that a few managing agents in Darnall obliged leaseholders to contribute towards a sinking fund and this is used to offset against larger works. Most Darnall leasehold properties will have a service charge for the upkeep of the building levied by the freeholder. Where you acquire the flat you will have to meet this amount, normally quarterly accross the year. This could be anything from a couple of hundred pounds to thousands of pounds for blocks with lifts and large common grounds. There will also be a rentcharge for you to pay annual, this is usually not a large sum, say around £25-£75 but you should to check as occasionally it could be many hundreds of pounds. This information is important as a) areas can result in problems for the block as the communal areas may start to deteriorate where repairs remain unpaid b) if the leasehold owners have an issue with the managing agents you will need to have full disclosure