Landlord Fees for Transfer Registration

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    #16
    Originally posted by leaseholder64 View Post
    Requesting retrospective consent will, I believe, void any indemnity policy. I don't see how an assignment to the OP waives the breach in any way.
    Because assignment would not be forthcoming if there was a breach that freeholder intended to enforce against?

    Comment


      #17
      Hi All

      Having had conversations with some colleagues today regarding my situation, a friend has suggested getting the solicitor to get an LPE1 form. Having looked at this I am aware that this should be provided by the Landlord/freeholder and contain all pertinent information such as ground rent and Notice of assignment fees. I am 99% sure my solicitor doesn't have this or maybe never asked for it ( I wouldn't have asked him as I wasn't aware of it until now.)

      Having been to the website and downloaded it, I cannot see on this form where it asks them to break down the costs of the Notice of Assignment fee - I think most would agree you would want to see this for such a hefty demand of £385!

      So now here is the dilemma. I was going to ask my solicitor to get the Landlord/freeholder to fill in one of these LPE1 based on the fact that I then have something in writing regarding the ground rent. But then on this document if they state that the notice of assignment fee as £385 would this supersede anything in the lease, (especially if they have then broken it down for additional admin fees etc?).

      I am also still going to instruct my solicitor to only pay the £2.10 on/after completion as I am convinced that the Lease must have the final say-so, but can they subsequently say something like "that will be £2.10 for the flat fee specified in the lease and another £382.90 for admin charges or something - oh and by the way as you didn't pay it in time that will be another £600!!".

      Hopefully I have have made my quandary clear, I guess this might be difficult to clarify but any further advice would be gratefully received.

      Many thanks to all those who have responded so far.

      Laurence

      Comment


        #18
        Originally posted by JK0 View Post

        Because assignment would not be forthcoming if there was a breach that freeholder intended to enforce against?
        The assignment would only fail if the freeholder already knew of the breach and there was a requirement for a licence to assign.

        If the freeholder's agent is who we think it is, and they knew of a breach, I assume they would be milking the seller already.

        Comment


          #19
          I have now seen a copy of the lease.

          The lease quite clearly provides for a fixed registration fee of two guineas. No higher fee can be charged unless there has been a deed of variation which is noted on the register. In the absence of any such variation no way should Macclad's solicitor pay more than £2.10 (possibly plus VAT - I can't remember the rules). Further, the lease provides that the notice is to be given to the landlord's solicitor. If the solicitors are not known at completion, the solicitor should enquire of the landlord who they are so that he can serve formal notice on them. He can add all the details that he would put in a notice of assignment, but no way should he use the form they supplied which says a fee of £385 is enclosed. Apart from a belt and braces check that there is no variation noted on the register, Macclad does not need to make any further enquiry on this point. The lease and the register are definitive. There is no justification for extra fees.

          As to the rent the copy lease has a blank space. However, the copy is not a photocopy of the original lease but a "made up file copy". It is entirely possible that whoever prepared the copy missed filling in the rent and that the original lease does specify the rent. The position can be resolved by referring to the Property Register of the leasehold title which will set out details of the lease including any rent payable. The seller's solicitor's can also be asked to confirm what the lease says, assuming they have it. Do not ask what the copy of the lease held by the landlord says. The original lease and Property Register override it. (For the record the register should also be checked to make sure the rent has been increased by a deed of variation.)

          Comment


            #20
            Originally posted by Macclad View Post
            Sorry, I also forgot to mention the seller of the property has taken out an indemnity policy for a historical extension (1970s) which had no permissions from anyone at the time and is situated to the rear of the property. It is a very small extension ( building notice only by today's standards) but this policy is apparently in place to protect me from the Landlord should he at some stage in the future decide to pursue me for an alteration which was carried out without his permission.

            Just thought this might be of some additional interest.
            Do not follow that up. Let sleeping dogs lie.

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              #21
              How many years left on the lease for the house ? The annual ground rent is £12 p.a and the registration fee is 2 Guineas ?

              We can calculate the cost to buy the freehold title if we know the years still unexpired on the lease.

              The Law Commission is holding a public consultation on what to pay for enfranchising a leasehold house ? .

              And you can make your contribution to Law Commission before 7 Jan 2019 with a complaint for Registration fee demanded at £385 when the lease states it should be 2 Guineas .

              Comment


                #22
                Originally posted by Gordon999 View Post
                How many years left on the lease for the house ?
                Term is 999 years from 1st January 1967.

                Comment


                  #23
                  I have taken on-board Lawcrunchers advice and have advised my solicitor accordingly. He has agreed to send the £2.10 to the Landlord (he didn't say Landlord's solicitor although I explicitly asked this so I am querying that point). He has sent me the following:

                  1. A response to my queries
                  2. An official copy of register of title
                  3. An electronic copy of the lease which I already have
                  4. And an email stream requesting receipt of ground rent paid to the Estate Management company.

                  The title of register clearly states 12 p.a. ground rent. I cannot detect anything which looks like a deed of variation but I wouldn't know really.
                  The email stream included looks like the Estate Management company want £50 for an official ground rent receipt. I only wanted proof of ground rent price so I presume the register of title does this - I have asked for the seller not to fork out this money to pay for this - I wouldn't wish anyone to have dealings with this company!

                  That's it so far. I will keep you posted on progress.

                  The subject of buying the freehold has been on my mind, but I was of the understanding that this could only be done once my mum had been in the property 2 years? I would be very interested on your views on this as raised in the last couple of posts, and how you go about calculating the cost.

                  Once again I am indebted to you all for your advice and help.




                  Comment


                    #24
                    I wonder if previous owner could request to buy freehold, and execute it on sale to you?

                    A fair cost is ten to twenty times ground rent, but who knows what management company might ask.

                    Comment


                      #25
                      I think the Estate Management Company would probably quadruple the figure, and add £500! Everyone I have spoken to has been flabbergasted by the sums being asked for. I really want as little dealings with these people as possible.

                      Priority now is to get my Mum settled close to me as quickly as possible having hopefully resolved the sizeable Notice fee issue - as I say I will keep you posted and I will look into the purchase of the freehold down the line. I know that one or two of the properties along her street are now freehold so I might politely ask the neighbours when I get the opportunity.

                      Comment


                        #26
                        Hi All

                        I think I have problems.

                        I requested that my solicitor send the £2.10 to the landlords solicitor. They have come back and said yes, we will send it to the Landlord - that was yesterday. I have quizzed this further and they have said they are sending it to the Estate Management company (SE) who is apparently the Landlord, quote:

                        "I appreciate the Lease refers to notice being served on the Landlord’s Solicitor, but the details supplied now require Notice to be sent directly to the Landlord".


                        Now I am really worried!! I need to keep my contact with these people to nil! What details supplied? I presume I can ask the solicitor to dig further now.? I am getting the impression that my solicitor can't be bothered and just wants to get to the end.

                        Any advice gratefully received of course - another sleepless night now!!

                        If the Notice is served to the Estate Management company do they have any leverage to try to get their fee?

                        Many thanks.

                        Comment


                          #27
                          If it's the company I think you mean, they are 'solicitors' themselves when it suits them.

                          Comment


                            #28
                            The lease has a specific obligation: To give notice to the landlord's solicitors and pay a fee of two guineas. If that is done the requirement is complied with and there can be no breach of covenant.

                            Obviously to comply with the obligation you need to know who the landlord's solicitors are. If you do not know you ask the landlord.

                            If the landlord declines to say who his solicitors are he cannot complain if the notice is not served.

                            If he says to serve the notice on him that waives the requirement to serve it on his solcitors and you serve the notice on him. What he cannot do is to ask for the two guineas because the lease only provides for a fee to be paid to his solicitor.

                            What the landlord certainly cannot do is unilaterally alter the terms of the lease. He can only insist on complying with the clause as it stands.

                            If I were acting and on completion did not have the solicitor's details I would write to the landlord in the following terms:

                            We act for X who has completed the purchase of Y.

                            The lease requires notice of assignment to be served on your solicitors. If you let us have their name and address we shall serve notice on them.

                            In the meantime so that you can bring your records up-to-date we set out below details of the assignment:

                            [set out details]


                            The above gives the landlord all the information he would get from a notice served on his solicitors so he cannot argue he has lost out in any way by such a notice not being served. Further, if he fails to advise his solicitor's details he cannot hold you in breach for failure to serve the notice.

                            Too many landlords/managing agents make it up as they go along and, regrettably, far too many conveyancers let them get away with it for an easy life. Most landlords and agents will back off when confronted by a lawyer who stands up for his client.

                            Comment


                              #29
                              Many thanks for this once again Lawcruncher. I do believe my conveyancer fits in to your assessment. It is not everyday I have to buy and sell houses, so my dealing with solicitors are few and far between. I am in no position to comment generally, but my solicitor tends to give understated hints that he agrees with me on certain issues. However I don't really feel supported by him, certainly with this particular problem.

                              To be served with the Notice fee problem right at the death seems odd to me. Why didn't I have this problem sorted earlier in the process? Why is he not giving me some advice on what to do? I understand the conveyancing process involves gathering information from various sources, this involves time and there will be multiple jobs to work on. But I am an uniformed client, I don't know what nastys lie around the corner and I hope he would have my best interests at heart. After all I am paying him good money for his services. My profession as a structural engineer means that I like to solve problems and learn new 'stuff' - and I am learning very fast from this excellent community on here!

                              Comment


                                #30
                                Serving a notice of assignment is a routine task for a conveyancer. It has assumed significant proportions here because of the landlord's outrageous and unjustifiable fee demand. I think we have knocked that on the head. Having done so, I think the matter can safely be left in your solicitor's hands subject only to suggesting he asks for the landlord's solicitor's details so he can serve notice on them. If your solicitor appears relaxed over this aspect it is because he (correctly) sees no real problem.

                                Comment

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