We are planning to acquire a 3 bedroom apartment in Osterley with a mortgage. We would like to retain our Osterley conveyancer, but the mortgage company advise he's not on their "panel". We have to appoint one of the bank panel conveyancing practices or keep our Osterley property lawyer as well as pay for one of their panel firms to represent them. This seems very unfair; is there anything we can do?
Unfortunately,no. Your mortgage offer is subject to its terms and conditions, one of which will be that lawyers will on the lender’s conveyancing panel. Until recently, most lenders had large numbers of law firms on their panels: a borrower could choose one for themselves, as long as it was on the lender's panel. The lender would then simply instruct the borrower's lawyers to act for the lender, too. You can use your lender's panel lawyers or you could borrow from another lender which does not restrict your choice. Another option that might be available is for your Osterley conveyancing lawyer to apply to be on the conveyancing panel.
How can we know in advance if a Osterley conveyancing solicitor on the HSBC panel is any good?
When it comes to conveyancing in Osterley getting recommendations is a good starting point. Before you go ahead, check if they offer a no sale no fee offer. Also, you often get what you pay for - a firm which quotes more, will often provide a better service than one advertising the lowest fees. We would always advise that you speak with the lawyer carrying out your transaction.
We have agreed to purchase a house in Osterley. A rare aspect is that the roof has a solar panel. Solicitors conducting should look into this right? Will my lender Virgin Money be concerned?
As your lender is Virgin Money your lawyer must follow the formal requirements set out in Part two of UK Finance Lenders’ Handbook for Virgin Money. The Council of Mortgage Lenders’ Handbook includes minimum conditions for solar panel roof-space leases, and lawyers are required to report to Virgin Money where a lease fails to satisfy these conditions. The conditions relate to the installation of panels on properties countrywide and is not restricted to Osterley.
It is unclear whether my lender requires a lease extension. I have called into my local Osterley bank branch on numerous occasions and was told they are content with the situation and they would lend. My Osterley conveyancing solicitor - who is on the lender conveyancing panel- telephoned to say that they refuse to lend in accordance with their specific requirements. Who do I believe?
Your solicitor must follow the Council of Mortgage Lenders’ Handbook section two specifications for your bank. 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 left on the lease.
I have been told that property searches are the number one cause of delay in Osterley house deals. Is there any truth in this?
The Council of Property Search Organisations (CoPSO) released findings of research by MoveWithUs that conveyancing searches do not figure amongst the most frequent causes of hindrances during the legal transfer of property. Local searches are unlikely to feature in any slowing down conveyancing in Osterley.
I'm refinancing my primary property to a BTL loan with Norwich and Peterborough Building Society and I will use the rest of the raised equity as a down payment on further property. The neighborhood we are interested in is Osterley. Will your solicitors be able to act for both sets of lenders and link together the two deals?
Do use our comparison tool on this page to be sure that the conveyancers are approved by both banks. Assuming that they are your solicitor should be able to tie up the two deals but you should have a chat with you conveyancer and specify your expectations and requirements.
Is it best to use a Osterley conveyancing practitioner based in the vicinity that I am hoping to buy? I have an old university friend who can deal with the legal formalities but his firm is located 300miles away.
The benefit of a local Osterley conveyancing practice is that you can attend the office to execute paperwork, hand in your ID and pester them where appropriate. They will also have local intelligence which is a bonus. However nothing is more important than finding someone that will pull out all the stops for you. If if people you trust instructed your friend and they were content that should outweigh using an unfamiliar Osterley conveyancing solicitor solely due to them being Osterley based.
I work for a reputable estate agency in Osterley where we have experienced a number of flat sales put at risk as a result of leases having less than 80 years remaining. I have received contradictory information from local Osterley conveyancing solicitors. Could you clarify whether the owner of a flat can instigate the lease extension formalities for the buyer?
Provided that the seller has owned the lease for at least 2 years it is possible, to serve a Section 42 notice to start the lease extension process and assign the benefit of the notice to the purchaser. This means that the buyer can avoid having to sit tight for 2 years for a lease extension. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment needs to be completed prior to, or at the same time as completion of the sale.
Alternatively, it may be possible to extend the lease informally by agreement with the landlord 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 purchaser.
I have had difficulty in trying to purchase the freehold in Osterley. Can this matter be resolved via the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal?
Most definitely. We are happy to put you in touch with a Osterley conveyancing firm who can help.
An example of a Lease Extension decision for a Osterley flat is Ground Floor Flat 91 Bath Road in May 2009. in a case where the freeholder could not be traced, the Brentford County Court ordered that the Lease be surrendered in return for the grant of a new lease of the Premises at a premium determined by the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal. The tribunal concluded that the price payable by the Applicant for the new lease of the premises be £15,900 This case affected 1 flat. The number of years remaining on the existing lease(s) was 60.45 years.