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Find a Milnthorpe Conveyancing Solictior on Your Lender’s Panel

Ready to buy a new home in Milnthorpe? Failing to check that a lawyer is on your lender’s list of approved solicitors can put your Milnthorpe conveyancing at risk of delay or failure.

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Recently asked questions about conveyancing in Milnthorpe

Is the fact that my conveyancer in Milnthorpe is not identified on my lender's solicitor panel that there is a problem with the quality of the firm’s conveyancing?

It would not be wise to jump to that conclusion. There are plenty of plausible explanations. Just recently a report by the solicitors regulator revealed 76% of law firms surveyed had been removed from at least one lender panel. The most common reasons for removal are: (1) low volume of transactions (2) the lawyer is a sole practitioner (3) as part of the HSBC panel reduction (4) regulatory contact by SRA (5) accidental removal. Where you are concerned you should contact the Milnthorpe conveyancing firm and enquire why they are no longer on the approved list for your lender.

About to place an offer on a leasehold flat in Milnthorpe. The estate agents tell me that it is standard for flats in Milnthorpe to have less than 75 years unexpired on the lease. I am expecting a loan with Nationwide Building Society. Is this going to be a problem if the lease has 70 years unexpired.

Most leasehold conveyancing experts should be able to deal with a lease extension. if you are obtaining a mortgage then your lender may insist that the lease be extended before competition. Nationwide Building Society have specific requirements as set out in the UK Finance Lenders’ Handbook in relation to minimum unexpired lease terms. As of 17/6/2024 the requirements read as follows :

- Our minimum unexpired lease term is 55 years, except where lending is over 85% of the purchase price/valuation on a second hand flat, in which case our minimum unexpired term is 90 years.
- There must be at least 30 years remaining at the end of the mortgage term (regardless of the length of lease at the start).

Where the unexpired lease term is different to that recorded on the mortgage offer, the following clarifies if we need to be informed:

Second hand property:
- If the unexpired lease term on the offer is 85 years or more - only advise us if the actual lease term is less than 85 years
- if the unexpired lease term on the offer is less than 85 years – advise us if the actual lease term is different than reported
- For equity share applications - advise us if the actual lease term is different than reported on the offer
- Where lending is over 85% of the purchase price/valuation on a second hand flat and the unexpired lease term on the offer is 90 years or more - only advise us if the actual lease term is less than 90 years.

New build property:
- If the unexpired lease term stated on the offer is 125 years (flat) / 250 years (house) or more - only advise us if the actual lease term is less than 125 years (flat) / 250 years (house)
- For equity share applications - always advise us if the actual lease term is different than reported on the offer

Lease terms such as ground rent and event fees must be reasonable at all times during the term of the lease and adhere to our requirements below. If you’re unsure as to whether the terms of a lease are unreasonable or onerous, please refer the details to us in plain English for Valuer consideration. If the potentially onerous terms are in relation to the ground rent please include the current ground rent figure per annum, how often it will be reviewed and the price structure it will be reviewed against. See the guidance below.

SECOND HAND PROPERTIES

Unacceptable - advise Issuing Office (Will be declined):
- Unexpired lease term less than 55 years
- Unexpired lease term less than 90 years where we are lending more than 85% of the purchase price/valuation on a second hand flat
- Less than 30 years remaining at the end of the mortgage term
- Ground Rent greater than 0.5% of the property value
- Ground Rent doubles less than every 20 years (e.g. doubles every 5, 10 or 15 years) - acceptable if doubles every 20 years or more
- Ground Rent is compounded RPI
- Ground Rent review period is less than or equal to 5 years

Refer to Issuing Office (Valuer will consider any impact on valuation figure and marketability):
- Unexpired lease term is 55 to 85 years
- Ground Rent greater than 0.1% and less than or equal to 0.5% of the property value
- Ground Rent escalation is linked to any indices greater than RPI
- Ground Rent escalation is linked to the value of the building*
- Ground Rent review period is greater than 5 and less than 10 years
- Event clauses exist for normal use e.g. changing the carpet, installing a TV aerial, etc
- Estate Rent Charges greater than £500 p/a (please provide details of what the charges cover)
- Service Charges greater than 1% of property value p/a (please provide details of what the charges cover)
- Anything that appears onerous, unusual or out of the ordinary

Acceptable (no requirement to advise Issuing Office):
- Unexpired lease term greater than 85 years (Minimum 90 years where we are lending more than 85% of the purchase price/valuation on a second hand flat)
- Ground Rent less than or equal to 0.1% of the property value
- Ground Rent review period greater than or equal to 10 years
- Ground Rent escalation less than or equal to RPI

NEW BUILD PROPERTIES (includes office conversions)

Unacceptable - advise Issuing Office (Will be declined)
- Unexpired lease term less than 125 years on a new build flat or less than 250 years on a new build house (does not apply to Shared Ownership)
- Any lease which is subject to a Ground Rent (or Annual Rent) being charged which is more than on a peppercorn basis
- Any lease which is subject to a Ground Rent (or Annual Rent) being charged which is more than on a peppercorn basis

Refer to Issuing Office (Valuer will consider any impact on valuation figure and marketability):
- Event clauses exist for normal use e.g. changing the carpet, installing a TV aerial etc
- Estate Rent Charges greater than £500 p/a (please provide details of what the charges cover)
- Service Charges greater than 1% of property value p/a (please provide details of what the charges cover)
- Anything else appears onerous, unusual or out of the ordinary

Acceptable (no requirement to advise Issuing Office):
- Unexpired lease term greater than or equal to 125 years on a new build flat or greater than or equal to 250 years on a new build house
- A lease subject to a peppercorn Ground Rent (Annual Rent) charges

For the avoidance of doubt, any New Build properties completed but not sold pre-30 June 2022 will only be acceptable if the Lease conforms to the above guidance.

* Where the Ground Rent escalation is linked to the value of the building, please provide the following:
- How is the value of the block/unit currently calculated and if the assessment relates to the block(s), how is the Ground Rent calculated/apportioned per property?
- The current valuation and Ground Rent for each unit
- What is the mechanism for future valuations of the block and how is the Ground Rent calculated/apportioned?
- What is the right of appeal? And is this a documented process within the lease?
- Who bears the cost of the valuation (and appeal) process?
- Confirmation the review period is not less than twenty years.

Lease Extensions

We require all Lease Extensions to be completed under the Leasehold Reform Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 and to meet the above criteria as a minimum. Where you become aware that it does not meet these requirements, please refer to Issuing Office.

Will my conveyancer be raising questions concerning flooding as part of the conveyancing in Milnthorpe.

The risk of flooding is if increasing concern for solicitors specialising in conveyancing in Milnthorpe. There are those who buy a property in Milnthorpe, completely aware that at some time, it may suffer from flooding. However, aside from the physical damage, where a property is at risk of flooding, it may be difficult to get a mortgage, adequate insurance cover, or dispose of the premises. Steps can be carried out as part of the conveyancing process to forewarn the buyer.

Lawyers are not qualified to impart advice on flood risk, but there are a number of checks that can be carried out by the purchaser or on a buyer’s behalf which should figure out the risks in Milnthorpe. The standard completed inquiry forms supplied to a buyer’s solicitor (where the solicitors are adopting what is known as the Conveyancing Protocol) contains a standard inquiry of the owner to discover whether the premises has suffered from flooding. If flooding has previously occurred and is not notified by the owner, then a buyer may issue a claim for damages as a result of such an incorrect reply. A buyer’s conveyancers will also carry out an environmental search. This should higlight if there is any known flood risk. If so, additional inquiries will need to be initiated.

How does conveyancing in Milnthorpe differ for new build properties?

Most buyers of new build property in Milnthorpe contact us having been asked by the builder to sign contracts and commit to the purchase even before the residence is built. This is because new home sellers in Milnthorpe typically acquire the land, plan the estate and want to get the plots sold off as they are building the properties. Buyers, therefore, will have to exchange contracts without actually seeing the house they are buying. To reduce the chances of losing the property, buyers should instruct conveyancers as soon as the property is reserved and mortgage applications should be submitted quickly. Due to the fact that it could be several months and even years between exchange of contracts and completion, the mortgage offer may need to be extended. It would be wise to use a lawyer who specialises in new build conveyancing especially if they are accustomed to new build conveyancing in Milnthorpe or who has acted in the same development.

I am hoping to put an offer on a small detached house that appears to be perfect, at a great figure which is making it more attractive. I have subsequently been informed that the title is leasehold rather than freehold. I am assuming that there are particular concerns buying a leasehold house in Milnthorpe. Conveyancing solicitors have are soon to be appointed. Will my lawyers set out the risks of buying a leasehold house in Milnthorpe ?

Most houses in Milnthorpe are freehold rather than leasehold. In this scenario it’s worth having a local solicitor who is familiar with the area who can assist with the conveyancing process. We note that you are purchasing in Milnthorpe in which case you should be shopping around for a Milnthorpe conveyancing practitioner and check that they have experience in transacting on leasehold houses. First you will need to check the number of years remaining. Being a tenant you will not be entirely free to do whatever you want to the property. The lease comes with conditions for example obtaining the freeholder’spermission to conduct changes to the property. You may also be required to pay a service charge towards the maintenance of the communal areas where the property is part of an estate. Your solicitor should advise you fully on all the issues.

Leasehold Conveyancing in Milnthorpe - Sample of Queries Prior to buying

    How much is the ground rent and service charge? How long is the Lease? Are any of leasehold owners in dispute over their service charge liability?

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