Leasehold Conveyancing Solicitors
Our expert conveyancing solicitors are experienced in leasehold transactions and can advise you whether you’re buying or selling a leasehold property.
When you buy a leasehold flat or house, you’re actually buying the right to occupy that property for the fixed term of the lease. You don’t own the land that your property is built on; this remains within the landlord’s ownership.
Despite this, buying a leasehold property is the same as buying a freehold property, with the additional aspects of a lease between you and the landlord.
The lease is a legal contract. It outlines the responsibilities of the landlord to manage, maintain and repair the building structure, common areas and exterior. It also details your obligations as the purchaser, including information relating to payment of ground rent and service charges.
Buying a leasehold FAQs
Leasehold means that you own the property, but the land on which the property is built is owned by the freeholder. This means that you only have the right to own the property for as long as the lease is valid.
Freehold differs in that the property owner also owns the land on which the property stands. The property owner can be an individual, a management company or a commercially run company.
As a leasehold flat owner, you own everything within its walls, including the floor and plaster work. You do not own the external or structural walls. These, plus the common areas and the land your property stands on, are owned by the landlord.
Our simple guide to buying leasehold outlines some of point you’ll need to consider when buying a leasehold property.
You can extend your lease using the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 or by private negotiation with your landlord.
Leasehold extension negotiations can be complex, so speak to our specialist property solicitors about your options. We act on behalf of leasehold property owners and landlords.
Leasehold property is a tenancy; therefore it’s subject to the payment of rent (the ‘Ground Rent’). This is a specific requirement of the lease and must be paid on the due date.
Service charges are payments made by the leaseholder to the landlord for services provided, including maintenance and repairs to the property, and building insurance.
Charges normally include a management charge, payable to the landlord or a management agent. They will vary yearly and can be increased without any limit other than that they are ‘reasonable’.
You can find out more about buying a leasehold property in our simple guide to buying leasehold.
If you’re considering buying a leasehold property, it’s important to find out the current and future service charges and whether any major work is planned that may affect it.
Your lease will normally specify that the landlord is responsible for adequately insuring the building. However the landlord may also have the right to recover premiums through service charges.
For a free quote, complete our short form. Our charges are transparent and we quote for all fees and disbursements up front, meaning that you’ll understand the full extent of your conveyancing charges from the very start.