Trade associations across the legal and leasehold sectors have updated the leasehold property enquiry forms including the LPE1, LPE2 and FME1. The new versions for use of these forms have now been launched and should be used from 11th January 2022.
This is the third version of the LPE1 form with a number of new additional questions and amendments made, including:
• the UPRN of the property with the updated form fields included;
• the addition of bank details of landlord/management company/managing agent for payment of the completed ‘LPE1’ or ‘management pack’;
• whether a fire safety or an external fire wall assessment has been undertaken, and whether there are urgent works required as a result.
• buildings insurance enquiries including any non-compliance that would render the policy void;
• information regarding any parking regulations or restrictions in addition to any set out in the lease;
• information regarding restriction of keeping any pets and details of those restrictions;
• whether authorised persons can accept the service of ‘Notice’ by email.
The addition of the fire safety question also weighs heavily, particularly in light of the ongoing issues many leaseholders are having or have had with their building’s fire safety and will no doubt allow both buyers and sellers to identify material facts around cladding early on in the transaction. Some residential properties (following the fire at Grenfell) such as blocks of flats require confirmation that the external wall system on the building has been assessed for fire safety by a suitable expert, in line with government guidance. Some lenders insist on having an EWS1 form and therefore this is hugely important to affected leaseholders.
The updated LPE1 form aims to improve the consistency and reduce the volume of paperwork required during a transaction process whilst providing better information for buyers. Capturing an array of additional and specific information such as additional contact details, cladding issues, service charges and buildings insurance helps to combat unnecessary questioning which has been on-going for some time and ensures the purchaser is well informed as well as help progressing the conveyancing process.
Using the new updated LPE1 form will help future buyers of leasehold and freehold properties, understand in advance their responsibilities and existing and future costs relating to their properties and make them aware of the parties responsible for the maintenance and upkeep of the shared services.
The FME1 form is now a second edition and contains a number of additional questions including who deals with the deed of covenant, contributions to the service charge, and access to insurance. Use of the new FME1 form should now ensure that prospective buyers have full details of any contribution required for the purchase of the freehold, details of the maintenance arrangements for the shared areas, likely increases to these amounts, and the amounts payable for the maintenance and upkeep.
Beth Rudolf, Director of Delivery at the Conveyancing Association, commented:
“The industry has committed to ensuring the forms are up to date and continually assessed to make sure they ask for all the necessary information. These new iterations of the forms do just that, and particularly in light of the ongoing issues many leaseholders are having with their building’s fire safety, it is clearly very important that all stakeholders have full upfront and transparent information on this aspect of the property. We’ll continue to review these forms to make sure they are fit for purpose going forward.”