Tag: leasehold

Lease extensions

a key in a lock - Lease extensions, extending my lease, legal advice in Hungerford, Berkshire.

If you have owned a leasehold property for over 2 years as a private individual, generally you will have a right to extend your lease (subject to qualifying conditions). This may be required when you are thinking of selling your flat or re-mortgaging, or you may wish to do it as an investment in your property for the future.

The new lease would be for a period of 90 years plus the original term at a peppercorn rent.

You should look at extending your lease if it has less than 90 years to run, as it can begin to devalue the property as the lease term shortens. When the lease drops below 80 years, the premium can increase significantly. Most mortgage companies will not accept leases of less than 30 years plus the proposed mortgage term.

THE PROCEDURE

Qualification

Was the lease originally granted for a term of more than 21 years?

Have you held the lease for at least 2 years or had the benefit of the lease extention process assigned to you?

Valuation

A specialist valuer will prepare a valuation of the lease extension and give you a suggested premium, using a special formula set out in the legislation.

Notice of Claim

We will prepare a notice to inform the landlord of your intention to purchase a lease extension. This is served on the landlord and any other parties to the lease (e.g. a management company).

Landlord’s Counter-notice

The landlord has 2 months in which to serve a counter-notice, either accepting your proposed terms or proposing new terms, or denying your claim. During this time the landlord is likely to instruct its own valuation of the property and may require access for this. They may also ask for a 10% deposit from you.

Negotiations

Within 2 months of the date of the counter-notice, both parties have the opportunity to negotiate agreed terms.

First Tier Tribunal (Property Chamber)

If an agreement cannot be reached, an application must be made to the Property Tribunal for a determination of the premium payable.

Completion

Once terms are agreed, or have been determined by the Tribunal, the landlord’s solicitor will provide the new lease and this will be signed by all parties and completed. This is the point at which you must pay the premium and costs.

Costs

As part of the legislation, the tenant is responsible for paying the landlord’s legal fees for service of the counter notice and preparation of the new lease, and the landlord’s valuation fees. These must be reasonable and if they are not agreed, an application can be made to the Tribunal for a determination of the amount payable.

To discuss this and to obtain more information contact:
Julian Dickins or Deborah Wason at Dickins Hopgood Chidley Solicitors,
The Old School House, 42 High Street, Hungerford, Berkshire, RG17 0NF 01488 683555

Buying your freehold

Signing a document, to illustrate someone buying their freehold, having received legal advice from property solicitors in Hungerford

If you live in a leasehold flat and fulfil the relevant qualifying criteria, it is possible to purchase the freehold of the building from the current freeholder.

This will give you several advantages, including:

1. Control over the management of the building, including insurance, maintenance, repair and decoration;

2. Control over the charges you pay for the management of the building;

3. It is likely to increase the value of your property.

Before you proceed with a freehold purchase, you will need to discuss the matter in depth with the leaseholders of the other flats in your building and obtain a commitment as to those who are going to participate. This can be done by a “participation agreement”.

To discuss this and to obtain more information contact:
Julian Dickins or Deborah Wason at Dickins Hopgood Chidley Solicitors,
The Old School House, 42 High Street, Hungerford, Berkshire, RG17 0NF 01488 683555

Commercial property

Commercial property being built - to illustrate commercial property legal advice from conveyancing solicitors in Hungerford Berkshire

We are frequently instructed to act in connection with commercial properties such as shops, offices, industrial units, warehouses, hotels and public houses and even on a couple of occasions, public conveniences.

1. Sale and Purchase

We can advise on:

a) The sale of a freehold property or the grant of a long leasehold interest in a property

Every sale or purchase is slightly different. We like to be involved from the outset to ensure we understand your requirements and the rationale for doing what you are doing. Certain aspects are critically important to get right from the outset, particularly the VAT status of the transaction.

We are on the panel of most lenders and will normally be instructed by a lender to act for them as well as you. This can often assist a transaction to run more smoothly.

b) Conditional contracts for the sale or purchase of property

A conditional contract may be required if something has to happen before a buyer will purchase but the parties wish otherwise to commit to a sale and a purchase. The most common condition is the grant of planning permission.

c) Option Agreements

An option is an agreement giving someone the right to buy a property on specified terms for a certain period. The price may be fixed or may depend on an outcome during the option

period. An option agreement is often used to enable a developer a certain period in which to explore the planning potential of a piece of land.

d) A deed of pre-emption

A pre-emption right is a right of first refusal. A common use of such a right is when someone sells maybe a slightly more unusual property, often retaining adjoining land, and wants the right to be able to “buy-back” that property
when it is next offered for sale

e) Overage agreements

Such an agreement is when an additional payment is due, normally to a seller on the happening of an event in the future. This will often be if planning consent is granted which enhances the value of land. The seller will then be entitled to the additional
payment.

2. Leases

We can advise a landlord or a tenant in connection with the grant of a lease.

We do like to meet you to discuss your requirements and to ensure that we understand what you wish to achieve. If a meeting is not feasible, we will report to you on the documents and we can then discuss with you on the telephone any issues arising from that report

It might be that there is a lease of the property already in place and you wish for that lease to be assigned to you. We can advise you on the procedure and the various documents which will be required.

We advise on licences to occupy which are suitable for a short-term let (no more than 6 months) or where space is shared.

We also advise on the renewal
of leases and the termination of leases.

3. Landlord and Tenant Issues

We advise on various issues which arise between a landlord and tenant including:
a) Non-payment of rent.

b) Claims for breach of covenant.

c) Dilapidations.

4. Planning

We advise on planning agreements which are often required as part of the planning process together with Landowners’ Co-operation Agreements.

5. Financing and Security

We advise on mortgages, guarantees and debentures.

We are often instructed by a lender whilst acting in connection with a purchase. Knowing our client can assist in that process.

To discuss this and to obtain more information contact:
Victoria Hopgood at Dickins Hopgood Chidley Solicitors,
The Old School House, 42 High Street, Hungerford, Berkshire, RG17 0NF 01488 683555

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