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Absent freeholder – legal problems and solutions


Although it has to be said there are some benefits to having an absentee freeholder when you are the leaseholder of a property, such as the quiet enjoyment of the property without the interference or even unreasonable demands of the landlord or the foregoing of hefty service charges, when it comes time to sell the READ MORE

Old leases for flats in converted houses – watch out for problems


With a rapidly expanding population and shortage of housing, since the Second World War, many houses have been converted into flats. According to the Office of National Statistics, there are over 800,000 properties where houses have been converted into flats in England. The flats created have generally been sold off on long residential leases. In READ MORE

Buying a property – understand the legal position with estate agents


I work with lots of estate agents very closely and have excellent relationships with them and we get a lot of our work via recommendations from them. As in any area of business, estate agents role is to make money. They also are well advised to ensure they keep a good reputation. However, with property READ MORE

How we can help with a fast exchange of contracts


In the video below James Swede explains that Darlingtons are highly efficient and experienced in securing a fast exchange of contract on property transactions. In many cases, where a property is in demand, moving quickly to exchange contracts is the difference between success and failure. To move quickly, you need a solicitor who is experienced READ MORE

Buying a property – valuation or survey ?


In the video below James Swede explains why buyers should always seriously consider a full survey or at least homebuyers report rather than the lender’s standard valuation. Valuation or survey ? READ MORE

Contaminated Land


What is Contaminated Land? Contaminated land is land that is a potential hazard to the environment because it has been polluted usually due to industrial use which has now ceased such as power plants, rubbish sites, mining, factories, steelworks, refineries and other agricultural activities. What’s the legal risk ? Contaminated land issues usually arise in READ MORE

Arm’s length transactions


In order for a transaction to be considered at “arm’s-length”, there is a requirement that the involved parties are independent in nature and equal. When looking at “arms-length transactions” specifically in relation to contractual agreements, it is vital that different parties in an agreement maintain this independence. It may be the case that both parties READ MORE

Property sale and purchase fall throughs


Moving house, buying or selling, is inherently stressful and one of the worst aspects is the prospect of the transaction falling through, also known as an abortive sale or purchase. Under the English legal system, unless and until contracts are formally exchanged, either party can back out of the transaction without penalty, unless there is READ MORE

Boundary problems and Land Registry plans


When buying property, ownership of the vast majority of property and land is conclusively determined, under the Registered Land system, by the Land Registry, which is a Government body. If the Land Registry title is incorrect, a buyer has the assurance that the Government is liable. However, it is important to be aware that whilst READ MORE

Caveat emptor, misrepresentation and ensuing conveyancing frustration !


Following on from my blog post last week about conveyancing, one particular area causing inherent delay and frustration for buyers or sellers is pre-contract enquiries. From a seller perspective, having instructed their solicitor, the sellers will be asked to complete a number of pro forma forms with lots of questions about the property and it’s READ MORE