How you benefit from extending your lease or buying your freehold
- When it comes to selling your flat, the shorter the lease the less attractive it will be to buyers. It will also suffer from a loss of value. Extending your lease is a method to negate these issues.
- Acquiring the freehold of your building will mean you now manage the property. This means you will be able to appoint who carries out any services and maintenance of the property; rather than rely on a landlord or managing agents who are not legally answerable to you as freehold tenants.
- No external landlord means saying goodbye to ground rent payments and the dreaded rent reviews.
If you hold a leasehold to a property, under the Leasehold Reform Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 (as amended) you may qualify to:
- Extend the terms of the lease
- Collectively buy the freehold, along with your co-lessee’s, from the landlord, known as collective enfranchisement
Qualifying standards for a lease term extension:
- The current lease was originally granted for a fixed term exceeding 21 years
- The leaseholder has owned the flat for the last two years
Qualifying standards for a collective enfranchisement action
- At least two-thirds of the flats are let to qualifying leaseholders.
- The minimum number of qualifying leaseholders must not be less than half of the total number of flats in the building.
- A qualifying leaseholder is a party that owns a lease greater than 21years.
- A leaseholder who owns 3 or more flats is deemed not to be a qualifying leaseholder of any of the flats
- Where there are only 2 flats, both flats must participate in the action
- The building must be self contained, completely vertically divisible and have wholly independent services (we can recommend a surveyor who will be able to confirm these details for you)
Our specialists are able to advise you on both courses of action and after checking that you are eligible to make this claim will...
If you qualify to extend your lease we will then:
- Prepare and serve notice of claim to the landlord
- Respond to the landlords request for information
- Make an application to a leasehold valuation tribunal
- Where applicable, negotiate the terms of a new lease on your behalf
The Acts lays down strict requirements that must be followed and there are serious consequences with failing to meet deadlines. Our Enfranchisement department is well versed in the act and will guide you through all the requirements.
If you qualify for collective enfranchisement action we will then
- Instruct our Company department to set-up a company to acquire the freehold interest on your behalf
- Prepare and serve an information notice and the initial notice
- Make an application to a Leasehold Valuation Tribunal (LVT)
- Negotiate the terms for the conveyance transferring the freehold interest to the leaseholders
- Prepare for the formal hearing before the LVT in the event that those issues that remain in dispute between the parties cannot be agreed.
TIP – After you have purchased the freehold you may need to update or write a will. Our Wills and Probate department will be happy to assist you in this.