The mortgage over my property is with Co-operative for my property in Southwark. Conveyancing was finalised months ago. If I am intending to rent out my property and do not currently have a buy-to-let mortgage do I need to remortgage to a BTL mortgage or inform Co-operative?
Your original mortgage agreement with Co-operative will provide that you need their approval before renting your property as this is likely to be a breach of Co-operative’s mortgage conditions. It may be that Co-operative will allow you to rent out your former home without needing to switch to a buy-to-let mortgage but some lenders will add a surcharge to your mortgage rate to reflect the higher risk. You should contact Co-operative directly. It should not be necessary to do this via a Co-operative conveyancing panel firm.
I recently had an offer accepted on a house in Southwark. My financial adviser recommended their conveyancers. I paid an advanced payment of £150. Soon after, the conveyancing practitioner called me to say that they were not on the Yorkshire BS conveyancing panel. Am I right in thinking that I should be due a refund?
You should be able to recover this from the law firm if they were not on the Yorkshire BS panel. They should have asked at the outset which lender you were obtaining a mortgage with. An important lesson to readers of this site is to check that the lawyers are on the appropriate lender panel.
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 Southwark solicitor - who is on the Virgin Money conveyancing panel - on this she said they don't do this and I need to contract an independent surveyor. Is that normal?
Virgin Money will need an independent valuation of the property. Your lawyer will not arrange this. Usually Virgin Money 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 conveyancing practitioner 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 Southwark postcode. As you are getting a mortgage with Virgin Money, you could contact them to see if they have a list of approved surveyors in Southwark.
3 months have elapsed since my purchase conveyancing in Southwark took place. I have checked the Land Registry website which shows that I paid £150,000 when infact I paid £170,000. Why the discrepancy?
The price paid figure is taken from the application to register the purchase. It is the figure included in the Transfer (the legal deed which transfers the property from one person to the other) and referred to as the 'consideration' or purchase price. You can report an error in the price paid figure using the LR online form. In most cases errors result from typos so at first glance the figure. Do report it so they can double check and advise.
How does conveyancing in Southwark differ for newly converted properties?
Most buyers of new build property in Southwark come to us having been asked by the builder to exchange contracts and commit to the purchase even before the residence is finished. This is because new home sellers in Southwark tend to purchase 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 property lawyers 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 used to new build conveyancing in Southwark or who has acted in the same development.
I have been on the look out for a leasehold apartment up to £235,500 and found one round the corner in Southwark I like with amenity areas and station nearby, the downside is that it only has 51 years on the lease. There is not much else in Southwark suitable, so just wondered if I would be making a grave error buying a short lease?
If you require a mortgage the shortness of the lease may be a potential deal breaker. Discount the price by the expected lease extension will cost if not already taken into account. If the existing proprietor has owned the property for at least twenty four months you could request that they commence the lease extension formalities and then assign it to you. You can add 90 years to the existing lease with a zero ground rent applied. You should speak to your conveyancing solicitor regarding this matter.
I am a sole trader wishing to take an assignment of a lease of an office on the high street. Can you recommend lawyers offering no-sale-no costs for non-domestic conveyancing in Southwark for under 2k?
We are happy to recommend firms who host a wealth of experience of commercial conveyancing in Southwark, including the disposal and purchase of businesses as well as simply property. Whether you are looking to buy or dispose of a shop, pub, restaurant, office, retail unit or a whole business we will find you the right lawyer. Regarding the costs these will vary based on the structure and heads of terms of the deal. Let us have your details or phone so as to enable us to provide you with a fixed commercial conveyancing calculation.
I've recently bought a leasehold house in Southwark. Am I liable to pay service charges for periods before my ownership?
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. Strange as it may seem, your landlord may still be able to take action to forfeit the lease. It is an essential part 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 the leaseholder of a a ground floor purpose built flat in Southwark. In the absence of agreement between myself and the freeholder, can the Leasehold valuation Tribunal make a decision on the amount payable for the purchase of the freehold?
You certainly can. We are happy to put you in touch with a Southwark conveyancing firm who can help.
An example of a Freehold Enfranchisement decision for a Southwark residence is 1-41 Royal Tower Lodge 40 Cartwright Street in April 2013. the tribunal adding the agreed value of capitalised ground rents and the reversion the price to be paid for the freehold was £1,187,000 This case affected 41 flats. The number of years remaining on the existing lease(s) was 107 years.