If you own your a leasehold flat, house, bungalow or a maisonette you have an agreement to occupy your home for a certain number of years paying ground rent but do you realise when the lease ends the freehold landlord gets the property back? This is a feudal system of ownership but you can do something about it.  


To delay this at present the law gives people in flats and maisonettes a right to have an extra 90 years and the ground rent alters to a peppercorn (zero) and for people in a house or a bungalow you can best improve your lot by buying the land under your feet!  You end up owning the building and the land.

According to Government plans to reform the law if you have a house or bungalow it appears that the valuation methodology may change slightly but you ought not to delay to buy your freehold since it appears the price will alter little for the vast majority of houses we deal with which come under the original valuation method which is the most advantageous system to house holders. Usually the longer you leave it the worse it gets because the general rule is:

                             the shorter the lease - the higher the price

As the law stands you need to have owned the property for 2 years. If you are administering a deceased estate the deceased needed to have owned it 2 years.

You will need the services of a good solicitor but if you don't already have a solicitor we may be able to recommend one.

Sadly your lease is a wasting asset and as its term reduces so does the value of your flat, bungalow, house or maisonette. The extent of this is not fully appreciated in the early years because the decrease in value is generally offset by property market increases. However, when you have less than about 70 years it is more difficult to obtain a mortgage - thus difficult to sell, except to cash buyers who usually pay a lot less!

An extension or acquisition of the freehold reverses this process and the full value of the property can be restored to you. This is the main reason people deal with their leases. Remember the longer you leave it to act the more expensive it becomes - unless Government gets a move on with changing the law on extensions by abolishing marriage value! 

Extending your lease or buying your freehold is therefore important because it will help to restore the value of your home, provide you with more security and hopefully give you more added value than the cost.

If you want to learn more please speak to Tony Brunt for an initial no charge, no obligation appraisal of your situation.  

For people in flats and maisonettes the Government proposes to make things easier for you but it's not yet been passed into law. It may yet take a while yet.

We have been helping people purchase freeholds for more than 30 years so we have plenty of experience to assist people in houses and bungalows. 

Tony Brunt: 0121 624 8545