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Recently asked questions about conveyancing in Hastings

We have rather pushy sellers who has suggested a preliminary contract with a non-refundable deposit two thousand pounds. Is it wise to enter into such agreements?

Lock out contracts are agreements between a property vendor and prospective buyer giving the buyer a ‘clear field’ to purchase the premises for a set period of time. Essentially, an exclusivity agreement is a contract specifying that you should be issued with a contract at a later date being the contract for the actual sale. It tends to be utilised for buyer assurance though in some cases, the seller may enjoy an upside from such agreements as well. There are numerous positives and negatives to having an agreement but you should to check with your solicitor but note that it may end up incurring extra in conveyancing charges. For this these agreements are rare when it comes to conveyancing in Hastings.

I am the registered owner of a freehold house in Hastings but still invoiced for rent, why is this and what is this?

It is rare for properties in Hastings and has limited impact for conveyancing in Hastings but some freehold properties in England (particularly common in North West England) pay an annual sum known as a Chief Rent or a Rentcharge to a third party who has no other legal interest in the land.

Rentcharge payments are usually between £2.00 and £5.00 per year. Rentcharges date back many centuries, but the Rent Charge Act 1977 barred the establishment of fresh rentcharges post 1977.

Old rentcharges can now be extinguished by making a lump sum payment under the Act. Any rentcharges that are still in existence post 2037 will be dispensed with completely.

I used Stirling Law several years ago for my conveyancing in Hastings. I now require my papers but cannot find the solicitor. What do I do?

You should call the Solicitors Regulatory Authority (SRA) to assist in tracing your conveyancing files. They can be contacted on please contact on 0870 606 2555. Alternatively, you should use their online form to make an enquiry. You will need to provide the SRA with as much information as possible to assist their search, including the name and address in Hastings of the conveyancing firm of solicitors you previously retained, the name of conveyancing solicitor with whom you had dealings, and the date on which you last had dealings with the firm.

Yesterday I discovered that there is a flying freehold element on a house I have offered on a fortnight ago in what was supposed to be a straight forward, chain free conveyancing. Hastings is the location of the property. Is there any guidance you can impart?

Flying freeholds in Hastings are not the norm but are more likely to exist in relation to terraced houses. Even though you don't necessarily need a conveyancing solicitor in Hastings you must be sure that your lawyer goes through the deeds very carefully. Your mortgage company may require your conveyancing solicitor to take out an indemnity policy. Some of the more diligent conveyancing solicitors in Hastings may determine that this is not enough and that the deeds be re-written to give you the most up to date legal protection. If so, the next door neighbour also had to sign up to the revised deeds.It is possible that your lender will not accept the situation so the sooner you find out the better. You should also check with your insurance broker as to whether they will insure a flying freehold premises.

I today plan to offer on a house that appears to meet my requirements, at a great price which is making it more attractive. I have just discovered that the title is leasehold rather than freehold. I would have thought that there are issues purchasing a leasehold house in Hastings. Conveyancing lawyers have not yet been instructed. Will my lawyers set out the implications of buying a leasehold house in Hastings ?

The majority of houses in Hastings are freehold rather than leasehold. This is one of the situations where having a local conveyancer used to dealing with such properties who can assist with the conveyancing process. It is clear that you are buying in Hastings in which case you should be shopping around for a Hastings conveyancing solicitor and check that they are used to dealing with leasehold houses. As a matter of priority you will need to check the number of years remaining. As a lessee you will not be entirely free to do whatever you want with the house. The lease will likely included provisions such as obtaining the landlord’sconsent to conduct changes to the property. You may also be required to pay a contribution towards the maintenance of the communal areas where the property is located on an estate. Your conveyancer will advise you fully on all the issues.

I acquired a split level flat in Hastings, conveyancing having been completed October 2009. Can you let me have an estimate of the premium that my landlord can legally expect in return for granting a renewal of my lease? Corresponding properties in Hastings with over 90 years remaining are worth £227,000. The ground rent is £50 charged once a year. The lease finishes on 21st October 2091

With 72 years remaining on your lease the likely cost is going to range between £9,500 and £11,000 as well as costs.

The figure that we have given is a general guide to costs for extending a lease, but we cannot give you the actual costs without more comprehensive due diligence. You should not use the figures in a Notice of Claim or as an informal offer. There may be other concerns that need to be taken into account and you obviously should be as accurate as possible in your negotiations. Neither should you take any other action based on this information without first getting professional advice.

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Find out more about how flying freehold can affect your the value of a property.