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Aston Lawyer
Aston Lawyer, Solicitor
Category: Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 10458
Experience:  LLB(HONS) 23 years of experience in dealing with Conveyancing and Property Law
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How to divide service charges between buyer and seller? I'm

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How to divide service charges between buyer and seller? I'm selling my leasehold flat. Camden Council own the freehold. The service charge account for April 2016-March 2017 includes charges for day to day services and major works --some works about to begin, others ongoing, none yet finished. Completion of the sale is in late October. Is it fair to ask the buyer to share payment of these costs: April-October paid by me the seller, November-March paid by the buyer? Thanks.
Submitted: 9 months ago.
Category: Property Law
Expert:  Aston Lawyer replied 9 months ago.

Hi,

It would be normal for your Solicitor to apportion the service charge up to the date of completion- ie he calculates how much the yearly service charge is/how much you have already paid and then works out how much credit you need to give to your Buyer or vice versa based on the fact that you are responsible for all service charge up to the date of completion and your Buyer is responsible for the service charge thereafter.

This is pretty bog standard stuff for your Solicitor to do.

I hope this assists but please let me know if you require any further clarification.

Kind Regards

Al

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
Thanks. As mentioned, the service charge in this instance includes both day to day service charge and charges for major works which have been notified by the landlord Camden Council. Does that change your advice?
Expert:  Aston Lawyer replied 9 months ago.

Hi,

As regards ***** ***** works, it would be normal for the Seller to pay for any works which have been carried out before completion and for the buyer to be responsible for any works post completion. However, as regards ***** ***** major works, the Buyer may ask that the Seller contributes towards these costs, on the basis that for example, he wasn't aware that these charges would be made- whether the Seller agrees to make such a contribution comes down to the bargaining powers of the 2 parties.

I hope this helps.

Kind Regards

Al

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
Thanks again.
I think the issue here is defining pre-completion and post-completion major works. My conveyancer says that I as seller should pay all the major works charges notified by Camden as chargeable within the 2016-17 financial year, whether or not I have been invoiced for them. But I feel the buyer should pay a portion of these ongoing works since he will own the flat for the last 5 months of the financial year.
Expert:  Aston Lawyer replied 9 months ago.

Hi, the issue should really be whether the work has been completed by the date you complete the Sale-any works which have been carried out pre completion should be your responsibility and your Buyer responsible for any future works. At the end of the day, it's what can be agreed amicably between the parties, but you certainly shouldn't initially agree to pay any future major works. Kind Regards Al

Expert:  Aston Lawyer replied 9 months ago.

Hi, if I have answered your question, I would be grateful if you could rate my service. Kind Regards Al

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