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Residential freehold enfranchisement

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The Grant Saw conveyancing team will be pleased to assist in your purchase of the freehold of your block of flats or freehold of a leasehold house. We are also frequently instructed by landlords to act on their behalf following their receipt of notification from the leaseholders that they wish to purchase the freehold or landlords wish to dispose of freeholds.

Why or when would someone require this service?

To assist residential flat owners and landlords in the purchase or sale of the freehold.

The main reason for leaseholders wanting to purchase the freehold is to be in control of the building (and common parts) which they live in and in the knowledge that the value of the property is likely to increase as a result of their purchase. In addition, leaseholders commonly obtain a reduction in the associated expenses of maintaining the property by reducing the amount of the service charges payable for the upkeep of the property.

Once the freehold is purchased leaseholders may decide to grant themselves an extended lease and/or vary their lease terms.

How long does it take?

If agreement is reached between the parties, the process can be completed within a matter of weeks from the date of agreement.

If the formal statutory route is required, which involves the leaseholders serving an Initial Notice followed by the landlord serving a counter-notice, the process can take around 12 months to compete.

Is it expensive?

We will charge a set fee for our service. The set fee is on the basis that the freehold purchase remains uncontested. If it does become contested then our litigation department will provide you with an estimate of costs for proceeding to the First-Tier Tribunal or County Court.

Our set fee will be dependent on whether we are acting for you as a landlord or leaseholder, the number of flats involved and the value of the freehold. Please contact us for a free quotation by telephone or by email [email protected].

The leaseholder will be responsible for paying the surveyor’s fee for valuing the freehold and for paying the landlord’s legal fees for transferring the freehold. The leaseholder will not however be required to pay the landlord’s fees for any proceedings with the First-Tier Tribuna, should this be required.

Things to consider before calling

Leaseholders should consider how they would wish to purchase the freehold. Would this be via a company specifically incorporated to complete the purchase or would the freehold be held in the individual names of the leaseholders?

Why are Grant Saw the best people for the job?

The Grant Saw Residential Property team are able to offer specialist legal advice to landlords and leaseholders. This area of law is particularly complex and there are many traps for the unwary.

We have successfully acted for numerous landlords and leaseholders. Please call us now for a free telephone consultation.

How does the process work/what are the steps?

There are two different routes that can be taken to purchase the freehold. Either agreement can be reached amicably between the landlord and tenants on all matters, including the price to be paid. The freehold will then be sold by mutual agreement.

Alternatively, the leaseholder can commence the statutory procedure which entitles them to purchase the freehold and requires the landlord to sell the freehold subject to the leaseholders meeting certain eligibility requirements.

In order to be eligible, the leaseholders must satisfy the following criteria:-

  • There must be at least two flats in the block.
  • Two thirds of the flats must be let to persons who are “qualifying tenants” (for example where a lease is granted for a term in excess of 21 years).
  • No more than 25% of the block is used for non-residential use.

There are certain exceptions if the landlord converted the building into flats.

Prior to tenants serving formal notice on the landlord, it will usually be necessary to instruct a surveyor to value the freehold. The notice served on the landlord will have to specify a sum which the participating leaseholders are prepared to pay for the purchase of the freehold.

Once the required notice is served on the landlord he will have a set period of time (at least two months) within which to serve a counter-notice. Within the counter-notice the landlord is required to state whether the sale of the freehold is agreed or not and if it is agreed, whether the landlord accepts the price proposed for the purchase by the leaseholders.

If the landlord is not in complete agreement with the tenants’ proposals, the solicitors and valuers instructed by both the landlord and leaseholders will usually attempt to negotiate those terms for which agreement has not yet been reached. If the parties are not successful in this regard, then any outstanding issues which are yet to be resolved will need to be determined by the First-Tier Tribunal (Property Chamber).

The above is a short summary of what is in fact a complex and detailed area of law. It is important to obtain specialist advice and assistance from legal advisers such as ourselves. Unfortunately all too frequently we are instructed by parties who have undertaken part of the process themselves or have previously instructed other solicitors who are not familiar with this area of law.

For a more comprehensive summary of the steps involved please see the commentary set out in the Leasehold Advisory website.

Residential freehold enfranchisement

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Meet the Residential freehold enfranchisement team
Ray Crudgington
Managing Partner
greenwich
02083054224
ray.crudgington@grantsaw.co.uk
Maria Lati
Partner
Head of Residential Property
blackheath
02083054229
maria.lati@grantsaw.co.uk
Michael Clary
Partner
Head of Family
greenwich
02083054237
michael.clary@grantsaw.co.uk
Kalpa Prajapati
Partner
Head of Private Client
blackheath
02083053536
kalpa.prajapati@grantsaw.co.uk
Mario Savvides
Partner
Head of Commercial Property
greenwich
02083053531
mario.savvides@grantsaw.co.uk
Sarah-Kate Jackson
Partner
Head of Litigation
greenwich
02083054236
sarah-kate.jackson@grantsaw.co.uk
Adina-Leigh Collins
Litigation
Solicitor
greenwich
02083053556
adina-leigh.collins@grantsaw.co.uk
Aimal Gram
Commercial Property
Solicitor
greenwich
02083053524
aimal.gram@grantsaw.co.uk
Aisha Mohammed
Residential Property
Solicitor
greenwich
02083054228
aisha.mohammed@grantsaw.co.uk
Aishat Balogun
Aishat Balogun
Family
Solicitor
greenwich
02083054214
aishat.balogun@grantsaw.co.uk
An Le Tran
Commercial Property
Professional Support Solicitor
greenwich
02083054226
anle.tran@grantsaw.co.uk
Angus Young
Litigation
Solicitor
greenwich
02083054225
angus.young@grantsaw.co.uk
Atifha Aftab
Atifha Aftab
Family
Solicitor
greenwich
02083054238
atifha.aftab@grantsaw.co.uk
Bimal Kotecha
Litigation
Solicitor
greenwich
02083053523
bimal.kotecha@grantsaw.co.uk
Charlotte Mandy
Charlotte Mandy
Private Client
Solicitor
blackheath
02083054231
charlotte.mandy@grantsaw.co.uk
Claire Mac Mahon
Litigation
Solicitor
greenwich
02083053537
claire.macmahon@grantsaw.co.uk
Deborah Taite
Residential Property
Solicitor
blackheath
02083053542
deborah.taite@grantsaw.co.uk
Emily Pearce
Residential Property
Solicitor
greenwich
02083053526
emily.pearce@grantsaw.co.uk
Georgia Beales
Litigation
Paralegal
greenwich
02083054206
georgia.beales@grantsaw.co.uk
James McKimm
James McKimm
Corporate and Commercial
Solicitor
greenwich
02083054217
james.mckimm@grantsaw.co.uk
Jeremy Brooks
Jeremy Brooks
Private Client
Solicitor
blackheath
02083053534
jeremy.brooks@grantsaw.co.uk
Joanna Godden
Notary Public
Notary
greenwich
02083083535
joanna.godden@grantsaw.co.uk
Kim Whitaker
Kim Whitaker
Corporate and Commercial
Head of Corporate and Commercial
greenwich
02083053539
kim.whitaker@grantsaw.co.uk
Laura Danquah
Compliance Manager
greenwich
02083054222
laura.danquah@grantsaw.co.uk
Lauren Smith
Employment and Family
Paralegal
greenwich
02083053543
lauren.smith@grantsaw.co.uk
Maleeha Iqbal
Residential Property
Licensed Conveyancer
greenwich
02083054232
maleeha.iqbal@grantsaw.co.uk
Mandeep Clair
Family
Solicitor
greenwich
02083054235
mandeep.clair@grantsaw.co.uk
Michael Pope
Employment
Consultant Solicitor
greenwich
02083053540
michael.pope@grantsaw.co.uk
Michelle Pinnington
Michelle Pinnington
Residential Property
Solicitor
greenwich
02083054216
michelle.pinnington@grantsaw.co.uk
Raj Waghela
Raj Waghela
Residential Property
Solicitor
greenwich
02083053529
raj.waghela@grantsaw.co.uk
Randeep Thethy
Randeep Thethy
Residential Property
Solicitor
greenwich
02083054209
randeep.thethy@grantsaw.co.uk
Ruggero Pesciatini
Ruggero Pesciatini
Corporate and Commercial
Paralegal
greenwich
02083054220
ruggero.pesciatini@grantsaw.co.uk
Saad Hameed
Residential Property
Trainee Solicitor
greenwich
02083053528
saad.hameed@grantsaw.co.uk
Sarah Conner
Sarah Conner
Private Client
Solicitor
blackheath
02083054234
sarah.conner@grantsaw.co.uk
Simran Lalli
Simran Lalli
Employment
Solicitor
greenwich
02083054208
simran.lalli@grantsaw.co.uk
Susan Collins
Commercial Property
Solicitor
greenwich
02083054200
susan.collins@grantsaw.co.uk
Tatiana Zenina
Tatiana Zenina
Private Client
Solicitor
blackheath
02083054239
tatiana.zenina@grantsaw.co.uk
Trisha Djemal
Trisha Djemal
Residential Property
Consultant Solicitor
blackheath
02083053546
trisha.djemal@grantsaw.co.uk
Tyrone Grant
Residential Property
Head of Leasehold Enfranchisement
blackheath
02083053522
tyrone.grant@grantsaw.co.uk
Denise
Accounts Staff
greenwich
02088586971
enquiries@grantsaw.co.uk
Jayne Lye
Support Staff
Office Manager
greenwich
02083054204
jayne.lye@grantsaw.co.uk
Jamie
Support Staff
Head of IT
greenwich
02088586971
enquiries@grantsaw.co.uk
Kasia
Accounts Staff
greenwich
02088586971
enquiries@grantsaw.co.uk
Michael Tobin
Michael Tobin
Support Staff
Marketing and Business Development Manager
greenwich
02083053550
michael.tobin@grantsaw.co.uk
Sue Holness
Support Staff
Customer Services
greenwich
02083054221
sue.holness@grantsaw.co.uk