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Robert Irving Burns

Leasehold Reform

Leasehold Reform relates to the right granted to residential long leaseholders to either extend their lease or buy their freehold. These rights are subject to a number of qualifying criteria and the law on leasehold reform is constantly evolving with cases setting new precedents on a regular basis.

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Most long leaseholders become aware of the need to extend the lease on their flat or house when looking to mortgage or re-mortgage the property. Mortgage companies are keen to see very long lease lengths on properties on which they are securing a loan. Long leaseholders have a legal right, subject to qualifying, to extend their lease. This involves several valuations that may then need to be negotiated between the freeholder and leaseholder to establish a premium to be applied to the lease extension.

Collective Enfranchisement is a further service provided to long leaseholders who would like to acquire the freehold interest of the property in which their home is situated. The legislation gives the right to qualifying leaseholders the collective right to purchase the freehold of the building. The qualification criteria and subsequent valuation process are complicated and need careful consideration and advice. Acquiring the freehold of a building comes with a range of responsibilities both practical and legal and potential freeholders need to be made aware of these ongoing obligations before proceeding.

In both cases, each party should be represented by both a solicitor and a valuer to protect their interests in these complicated negotiations. RIB has a number of specialist valuers based in London who have years of experience in dealing with both lease extensions and enfranchisements claims. They work very closely with both our residential sales and lettings teams who have up to date value information for our core areas of the West End, Fitzrovia, Soho, Paddington & Bayswater, Camden, Euston & King’s Cross, Marylebone, Covent Garden or Holborn.

Please contact one of the below for more information on our services and, if required, further advice on lease extension or enfranchisement you may be considering.