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  • FIRST POST
    • muz3562
    • By muz3562 4th Jul 18, 6:41 PM
    • 72Posts
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    muz3562
    Should I be concerned about this , conveyancer mistake
    • #1
    • 4th Jul 18, 6:41 PM
    Should I be concerned about this , conveyancer mistake 4th Jul 18 at 6:41 PM
    Okay so I'm a ftb so I've not had any experience with conveyancing before . Seen some friends go through the process but not been involved in all intricacies like I will be with my own property .



    So I had an offer accepted on a flat on the word from the estate agent that the lease was substantially longer than it is . Long story short it turns out it is not which did not really come as much of a shock because I thought the EA was being overly generous about the lease terms . But the lease looks like it is getting close to 80 years with some discrepancy between what me and my conveyancer think it actually is .



    No biggie , I just want to get my conveyancer to confirm the remaining term on the lease so I can go back to the estate agent and let the vendor know my offer might have to be reduced to accommodate the need to renew the lease sooner . Whilst waiting to hear back from my conveyancer I decided to just pay the 3 from the land registry and conduct my own research . By my reckoning on the information in the title document obtained from the land registry there are 81 years unexpired on the lease .



    So I was a bit surprised when my conveyancer come back to me and said the lease has 83 years remaining .


    Clearly the difference between 81 and 83 years could be crucial as I have to wait 2 years to be able to use the section 40 provisions to extend the lease by 90 years . I know I can get the lease extension right assigned in my benefit , but I need to plan for the worst should this process be carried out incorrectly .



    It looks to me like the conveyancer has got confused between the start date of the lease . And the date detailed in the term which is 99 years from 1st jan 2001 . Its a building with multiple flats and all flats seem to have the same start date which makes sense .



    I know everyone makes mistakes , but this seems like quite a fundamental mistake to make about some basic details of the lease . I hate incompetence with a passion so this has really irked me . But I also dont want to go in all guns blazing upsetting the conveyancer from early on in the process . Am I right to be irked by this . I obviously have gone back to them stating why I believe it is 81 years and asked for clarification which I am waiting to hear back on .
Page 1
    • davidmcn
    • By davidmcn 4th Jul 18, 6:57 PM
    • 8,049 Posts
    • 8,322 Thanks
    davidmcn
    • #2
    • 4th Jul 18, 6:57 PM
    • #2
    • 4th Jul 18, 6:57 PM
    I hate incompetence with a passion so this has really irked me .
    Originally posted by muz3562
    I get irked by people who put spaces before every full stop. I probably wouldn't ditch a conveyancer over it though.

    Anyway, you may want to wait and see whether your conveyancer agrees, just in case it is you who has overlooked something. But it doesn't sound like a big deal, things like this get double-checked at other more crucial stages in the transaction.
    • muz3562
    • By muz3562 4th Jul 18, 7:51 PM
    • 72 Posts
    • 49 Thanks
    muz3562
    • #3
    • 4th Jul 18, 7:51 PM
    • #3
    • 4th Jul 18, 7:51 PM
    I get irked by people who put spaces before every full stop. I probably wouldn't ditch a conveyancer over it though.

    Anyway, you may want to wait and see whether your conveyancer agrees, just in case it is you who has overlooked something. But it doesn't sound like a big deal, things like this get double-checked at other more crucial stages in the transaction.
    Originally posted by davidmcn
    Great and all , but I'm not a professional typist charging someone loads of money to not put a space before my full stop.



    I appreciate that it would get checked at a later stages, and hopefully would be correct by the time I get my legal report. However knowing at this early stage so I can ascertain my position going into negotiations with the vendor could save me a lot of time and money. I do not really fancy getting to the stage when we are ready to exchange to find out the lease is only 81 years and the seller is unwilling to negotiate on price. This is why I have pressed for clarification.



    If they did make a mistake though it seems pretty poor to me given I am paying them handsomely to check the legal details of the interest in property that I am purchasing.
    • bowlhead99
    • By bowlhead99 4th Jul 18, 9:01 PM
    • 8,089 Posts
    • 14,744 Thanks
    bowlhead99
    • #4
    • 4th Jul 18, 9:01 PM
    • #4
    • 4th Jul 18, 9:01 PM
    I appreciate that it would get checked at a later stages, and hopefully would be correct by the time I get my legal report. However knowing at this early stage so I can ascertain my position going into negotiations with the vendor could save me a lot of time and money. I do not really fancy getting to the stage when we are ready to exchange to find out the lease is only 81 years and the seller is unwilling to negotiate on price. This is why I have pressed for clarification.
    Originally posted by muz3562
    The person who the EA had lined up to buy my flat before I bought it, pulled out when he discovered that the EA had misled him about how many years left on the lease and wanted money off to continue with it, which was denied so he pulled out.

    The cause according to the EA was them knowing when the flat had originally been bought as a new build and knocking off the time the seller had owned it from the standard 125 year lease that all the flats had. But EAs don't read leases (or at least, as the buyer you're not paying them to do so), and had either accidentally or deliberately 'not realised' that all the lease dates started when the site began to be constructed, leaving four fewer years on the leases at the tail end of the development from the point they were actually bought as new builds.

    As you'd expect, the EA said the buyer was a bit flakey and not serious enough about the property so just looking for an excuse to pull out, while maybe the truth is that it was the last straw after the EA had been giving the buyer the run around on other issues... Personally to me the exact number of years didn't matter as it was still 100+, and I knew it before I even made my offer as the EA was up front about it (as his excuse for why the last sale fell through, i.e. it wasn't to do with any major red flag). But a few years makes proportionally more difference when there are fewer years left, and it might mean less time until a ground rent increase or some maintenance obligation.


    If you get a copy of the lease and it says a term of X years from Y date, work out when it finishes (Z) and subtract today's date and you'll have the number of years remaining. Not rocket science. If that's different from what the solicitor says, ask them why the number of years remaining isn't just Z minus today. May just be a simple oversight and people are right to say it will probably all get sorted by the end of the process, but you are right that the time to ask for a price change (if you think the property genuinely isn't worth what you offered now you know the real lease length) is sooner rather than later.
    Last edited by bowlhead99; 04-07-2018 at 9:04 PM.
    • G_M
    • By G_M 4th Jul 18, 9:30 PM
    • 44,745 Posts
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    G_M
    • #5
    • 4th Jul 18, 9:30 PM
    • #5
    • 4th Jul 18, 9:30 PM
    Pick up the phone, or pop in and ask.
    • muz3562
    • By muz3562 4th Jul 18, 9:40 PM
    • 72 Posts
    • 49 Thanks
    muz3562
    • #6
    • 4th Jul 18, 9:40 PM
    • #6
    • 4th Jul 18, 9:40 PM

    The cause according to the EA was them knowing when the flat had originally been bought as a new build and knocking off the time the seller had owned it from the standard 125 year lease that all the flats had. But EAs don't read leases (or at least, as the buyer you're not paying them to do so), and had either accidentally or deliberately 'not realised' that all the lease dates started when the site began to be constructed, leaving four fewer years on the leases at the tail end of the development from the point they were actually bought as new builds.

    As you'd expect, the EA said the buyer was a bit flakey and not serious enough about the property so just looking for an excuse to pull out, while maybe the truth is that it was the last straw after the EA had been giving the buyer the run around on other issues... Personally to me the exact number of years didn't matter as it was still 100+, and I knew it before I even made my offer as the EA was up front about it (as his excuse for why the last sale fell through, i.e. it wasn't to do with any major red flag). But a few years makes proportionally more difference when there are fewer years left, and it might mean less time until a ground rent increase or some maintenance obligation.


    If you get a copy of the lease and it says a term of X years from Y date, work out when it finishes (Z) and subtract today's date and you'll have the number of years remaining. Not rocket science. If that's different from what the solicitor says, ask them why the number of years remaining isn't just Z minus today. May just be a simple oversight and people are right to say it will probably all get sorted by the end of the process, but you are right that the time to ask for a price change (if you think the property genuinely isn't worth what you offered now you know the real lease length) is sooner rather than later.
    Originally posted by bowlhead99
    This looks like what has happened here . The lease states very clearly x number of years from y date . I have subtracted that and have arrived at the figure of 81 years .



    My seller acquired the lease a year after the date listed as the start date of the lease term . Which I think is what has confused the solicitor and probably the seller . As I said its no biggie if the seller is willing to subtract some from the sale price . If not , its not really a case of not thinking the flat is worth it its just financially I dont think I would be able to proceed. If it was 100 years plus the argument over a year here or there would not be worth having. But because of the potential for marriage value if the lease actually is 81 years it is an important detail to get right with the lease being so close to the 80 year threshold.




    There is another issue that could present a sticking point. That is I have been informed about some upcoming works to the building and given a figure for these. But based on what my valuation report has highlighted I think the figure I have been given is a little low. I've got a friend in the trade meeting me at the property tomorrow to have a look at the exterior works required and give his view on the sort of price expected to be paid for such work. Would this be picked up by searches anyway ? Im assuming it would be detailed in the management pack from the freeholder?
    Last edited by muz3562; 04-07-2018 at 9:54 PM.
    • G_M
    • By G_M 5th Jul 18, 3:44 AM
    • 44,745 Posts
    • 53,252 Thanks
    G_M
    • #7
    • 5th Jul 18, 3:44 AM
    • #7
    • 5th Jul 18, 3:44 AM
    . Would this be picked up by searches anyway ? Im assuming it would be detailed in the management pack from the freeholder?
    Originally posted by muz3562
    Only if the freeholder/managing agent has got as far as definitive quotes.
    • Tiglet2
    • By Tiglet2 5th Jul 18, 7:48 AM
    • 185 Posts
    • 183 Thanks
    Tiglet2
    • #8
    • 5th Jul 18, 7:48 AM
    • #8
    • 5th Jul 18, 7:48 AM
    Why don't you ask your solicitor to propose to the vendor's solicitor that the vendor should extend the lease as part of the sale? You could negotiate who would pay for this or maybe split between you.
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