Previously, the need to get a residential lease extension, (whenever a residential lease was nearing 80 years), was not commercially understood by buyers and sellers of residential property.
After a government advertising campaign and a wider consumer awareness of the problems with leases under 80 years, most leaseholders are now anxious to extend their residential leases at the earliest opportunity before the lease drops below 80 years – and thereafter costs considerably more to extend!
Our firm provides specialist legal services for leaseholders or freeholders in connection with claims for Lease Extensions, Collective Enfranchisement (freehold purchase) and freehold sales under the Landlord & Tenant Act 1987. We also have years of much sought after experience in representing our clients in the First-Tier Tribunal and handling the most complex of cases.
There are two types of residential lease extensions, either an informal lease extension, or a statutory lease extension granted under the Leasehold Reform, Housing & Urban Development Act 1993.
An informal lease extension is an agreement for the lease to be extended for an agreed period by the Landlord and in most cases commercially advantageous to them. It often takes the form of a new 99-year lease with a new obligation (amongst other things) to pay a revised ground rent.
Leaseholders (often without obtaining formal valuation advice) take it upon themselves to make the initial contact with the freeholder to enquire what lease extension terms are available.
These enquiries lead to the freeholder making a proposal to the leaseholder with respect to the length of the new term, the informal lease extension price and the new ground rent. These offers are not binding upon the freeholder if they change their minds at any time!
Leaseholders can perceive the informal terms offered to be unreasonable, or they may simply be unsure as to whether the offer is fair. We are happy to discuss whether such an offer you have received can be considered to be reasonable and whether you should proceed.
A statutory lease extension is for a specific extra term of 90 years added to the remaining term of the lease, and the ground rent is converted to nothing. Most landlords are unprepared to grant a lease upon these terms unless compelled to do so.
To claim a statutory lease extension, notice must be served upon your Landlord, under Section 42 of the Leasehold Reform Housing & Urban Development Act 1993 (amended by the Commonhold & Leasehold Reform Act 2002).
Whether you prefer an informal or formal lease extension, it is crucial to act as soon as possible. This is because, as time passes, the Landlord’s interest will increase in value, whilst the leaseholders will fall.
We have been successfully negotiating lease extensions since 2003 and regularly negotiate terms for both informal and formal lease extensions. Over the years we have settled lots of cases, many involving highly contentious disputes with large, powerful parties.
Our firm has helped hundreds of people throughout Margate, Ramsgate, Broadstairs, Birchington, Deal, Dover, Sandwich and Canterbury, and all other areas in Kent, Thanet and the South East of England with their residential lease extensions.
If you do decide to proceed with a formal lease extension and in the unlikely event that an amicable settlement cannot be reached, we will happily represent you at the First-Tier Tribunal, who in the absence of agreement will determine the issues in dispute.
Get in touch with us today so we can assist you with your lease extension.