Selling a flat with a short lease

Does a short lease matter?

Certain things in life are inevitable – death, taxes and the raw truth that day by day, your lease is getting shorter. But when you’re selling a flat, does a short lease really matter?

Quite apart from the fact that if you don’t extend your lease then eventually it’s going to expire and you will no longer own that flat, ending up with a short lease has some problematic consequences.

Selling a flat with a short lease – serious mortgage problems

Not least amongst the potential problems with a short lease is the fact that, increasingly, mortgage lenders are reluctant to lend on short leases. So, selling a flat with a short lease may prove difficult.

But don’t just take our word for it – at the bottom of the page you will see an extract from some recent figures on the Council of Mortgage Lenders website and the link to bang up-to-date information which shows that it’s become pretty difficult to obtain a mortgage on any residential property with a short lease.

And what do we mean by a short lease? There is no legal definition of a short lease and there is no doubt that in the last 10 years, mortgage companies have really moved the goalposts by requiring increasingly longer leases before they will consider a loan.

As you’ll see, many of the leading mortgage companies won’t even consider a mortgage on a lease with less than 70 years to run – so, and this is just a personal opinion, probably anything either below, or even approaching that crucial 70 year mark is a short lease and any property with that length of term remaining is going to be difficult to sell.

Selling a short lease – our expert advice

To make sure you get the best price for your property and to maximise the number of possible purchasers, you need to make sure either that;

1. you extend your lease well above the 70 year mark in advance of putting your property on the market OR

2. if you don’t have the cash to extend your lease extension, or you don’t want to wait for a leasehold extension to be completed,[and if you go down the safer formal route this could take up to six months or so] then you can start the process of lease extension yourself, by instructing a solicitor to issue the formal lease extension notice – and then transfer the right to extend the lease to the new purchaser. However, if you go down this second group, any sensible purchaser will look to reduce the price they going to pay you for your flat by the very least the likely cost of the lease extension, and probably a bit more on top.

NB although it’s not directly linked to selling your flat, please do be aware that the cost of lease extension goes up significantly when the remaining term of your lease dips just one single day below 80 years. So, regardless of whether you’re looking to sell your flat, if possible make sure you extend your lease well in advance of that 80 year period – we could end up paying thousands of pounds more for your lease extension. [Want to know why? Click here to find more about marriage value and your lease extension.]

Got a lease extension question? Call our specialist solicitors on FREEPHONE 0800 1404544 for FREE initial phone advice – with no strings attached.

Now is the right time to extend your short lease

While a lease extension for your flat always makes good financial sense, now is a great time to extend your lease. Why?

The UK housing market has been quite depressed for some to, but currently there appears to be a genuine revival in the housing market, which industry experts think could last for a few years. That means that the price of property generally is likely to go up and that in turn means that the cost of extending your lease will increase. So why wait for the price to go up – extend your lease today.

What kind of conditions do mortgage companies insist on when lending on a lease extension?

This is another issue. Quite apart from the fact that an increasing number of lenders require increasingly long remaining lease terms, other lenders adding additional requirements. Here are just a couple of your case studies that we’ve dealt with recently

1.       Lender: Leeds Building Society      Existing Lease Term: 52 years

 The clients had owned the property since 1992 and jointly owned the freehold with the flat below since circa 2010. They hadn’t re-mortgaged for some years and when they applied to Leeds, one of the conditions was that the lease extension would take place first, or simultaneously with the re-mortgage.

2.       Lender: Coventry Building Society         Existing Lease Term: 69 years

The client had owned the property since 2001 and last re-mortgaged in 2006. She decided to pursue a statutory or formal lease extension claim in this case, but either way the lender required it to be extended for the re-mortgage.

In both of these cases the existing lease lengths were relatively low and of course many lenders have different requirements.

What minimum unexpired lease terms do mortgage lenders require?

The Council of Mortgage Lenders Handbook provides an up-to-date list of lending criteria for leasehold property for approximately 97% of  lenders in England and Wales– click here to view that list

And here is a summary of the lending criteria for some of the biggest lenders as at according to the Council of Mortgage Lenders as at 6/2/19

lease

minimum unexpired lease term

Accord Buy to Let

85 years from the date of completion of the mortgage. Please ensure that you explain the implications of a short term lease to the borrower.
Accord Mortgages Ltd 85 years from the date of completion of the mortgage. Please ensure that you explain the implications of a short term lease to the borrower.
Adam & Company At least 30 years (calculated from the date stipulated for the repayment of the loan) unless we advise you otherwise in writing.
Adam & Company International At least 30 years (calculated from the date stipulated for the repayment of the loan) unless we advise you otherwise in writing.
Ahli United Bank (UK) plc 20 years (at term end)
Aldermore Bank PLC 60 years from the date of the mortgage, subject to 40 years remaining at the end of the mortgage term.

However, where the lease is shorter than 85 years from the date of the mortgage and this is not detailed in the valuation report, you should notify us so that we can ensure that there is no adverse effect upon the valuation.

Allied Irish Bank (GB), a trading name of AIB Group (UK) 60 years remaining at expiry of mortgage term.
Atom Bank plc At least 80 years at the outset of the mortgage and at least 50 years remaining at the expiry of the mortgage term.
Aviva Equity Release UK Ltd 160 years minus x
Where x=the age of the youngest borrower
Bank of Ireland (UK) plc Yes, subject to a minimum lease term of 85 years. The unexpired lease term must be at least the mortgage term plus 45 years. See also 5.14.9
Bank of Ireland as Bank of Ireland Mortgages Yes, subject to a minimum lease term of 85 years. The unexpired lease term must be at least the mortgage term plus 45 years. See also 5.14.9
Bank of Scotland Beginning A Minimum 70 years from the date of the mortgage.
Bank of Scotland Beginning O Minimum 70 years from the date of mortgage.
Banks and Clients Plc Refer to lender
Barclays Bank UK PLC Mortgage term plus 25 years
Barnsley Building Soc, a trading name Yorkshire Building Soc 60 years from the date of the mortgage application subject to 35 years remaining at the end of the mortgage term.
Birmingham Midshires Minimum 70 years from the date of the mortgage.
Bluestone Mortgages Mortgage term plus 30 years.
Bradford & Bingley Plc The lease must have at least 25 years remaining at the end of the mortgage term.
Britannia, a trading name of The Co-operative Bank plc 70 years unexpired at application, 30 years at the end of the mortgage term
Buckinghamshire Building Society Minimum of 35 years unexpired at the end of the mortgage term
Capital Home Loans Must have at least 60 years unexpired term on completion, with a minimum of 35 years remaining at the end of the mortgage term.
Chelsea Building Society (a trading name of Yorkshire BS) 85 years from the date of completion of the mortgage. Please ensure that you explain the implications of a short term lease to the borrower.
Clydesdale Bank plc Mortgage term plus 30 years.
Co-operative Bank plc 70 years unexpired at application, 30 years at the end of the mortgage term
Coutts At least 30 years (calculated from the date stipulated for the repayment of the loan) unless we advise you otherwise in writing.
Coutts Finance Co At least 30 years (calculated from the date stipulated for the repayment of the mortgage) unless we advise you otherwise in writing.
Coventry Building Society A minimum of 70 years unexpired lease at completion for all scheme types apart from Lifetime Mortgages (Equity Release), which require a minimum unexpired term of 80 years at completion.
Cynergy Bank Not less than 75 years at drawdown of the loan or first drawdown where the loan is drawn down in stages or less than 50 years unexpired at the end of the loan.
Darlington Building Society Minimum of 85 Years
DB UK Bank Ltd Mortgage Term plus 40 years
Dudley Building Society Capital and Interest basis – 85 years at draw down
Part and Part/Interest only & less than 50% – 85 years at draw down
Part and Part/Interest only & greater than 50% LTV – 85 years remaining at the end of the term
Earl Shilton Building Society Mortgage Term plus 50 years
Ecology Building Society Mortgage term plus 35 years
Family Building Soc (a trading name of National Counties BS) A minimum of 50 years must remain at the end of the mortgage term.
Fleet Mortgages 75 years unexpired at the commencement of the mortgage term but the unexpired term of the lease should not be less than 40 years at the scheduled end of the mortgage period
Foundation Home Loans 50 years unexpired at the end of the mortgage term.
Furness Building Society Minimum 85 years unexpired from completion, subject to not less than 55 years remaining at the end of the mortgage term.
GE Money Home Lending Ltd GE Money Home Lending has withdrawn from the UK mortgage market.
Godiva Mortgages Ltd A minimum of 70 years unexpired lease at completion for all scheme types apart from Lifetime Mortgages (Equity Release), which require a minimum unexpired term of 80 years at completion.
Halifax Minimum 70 years from the date of the mortgage.
Halifax Loans Ltd Minimum 70 years from the date of mortgage.
Hampden & Co. plc At least 30 years (calculated from the date stipulated for the repayment of the loan) unless we advise you otherwise in writing.
Handelsbanken Mortgage term plus 50 years.
Harpenden Building Society Mortgage term plus 40 years
Exceptions may be considered
Hinckley and Rugby Building Society There must be at least 85 years remaining on the lease when the mortgage starts and a minimum of 50 clear and unrestricted years remaining on the lease after the end of the mortgage term
Holmesdale Building Society 50 years remaining on the lease after the end of the mortgage term.
HSBC Bank plc All Residential leasehold properties must have more than 30 years remaining on the lease beyond the term of the mortgage at the outset.

All Buy to Let leasehold properties must have more than 35 years remaining on the lease beyond the term of the mortgage at the outset.

HSBC UK Bank plc All Residential leasehold properties must have more than 30 years remaining on the lease beyond the term of the mortgage at the outset.

All Buy to Let leasehold properties must have more than 35 years remaining on the lease beyond the term of the mortgage at the outset.

Intelligent Finance Minimum 70 years from the date of the mortgage.
Investec Bank plc 80 years after expiry of the mortgage.
ITL Mortgages 70 years unexpired terms at completion.
JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A. 50 years unexpired at application, 30 years at the end of the mortgage term.
Kensington Mortgage Company Ltd 85 years from the date of completion of the mortgage
Kent Reliance (a trading name of OneSavings Bank plc) A minimum of 50 years must remain at the end of the mortgage term
Keystone Property Finance 50 years unexpired at the end of the mortgage term
Landbay 55 years unexpired at the end of the term
Landmark Mortgages Limited The Mortgage Term plus 30 years.
Leeds Building Society 85 years remaing from the start of the mortgage.
Legal & General Home Finance Ltd Leasehold remaining term plus the age of the youngest borrower at completion must be at least 185 years.
LendInvest Mortgage term plus 65 years
Lloyds Bank plc pre fixed 20/40 Mortgage term plus 30 years subject to an overall minimum term of 70 years.
Lloyds Bank plc pre fixed 50/30/77 Mortgage term plus 30 years subject to an overall minimum term of 70 years
Lloyds TSB Scotland plc Mortgage term plus 30 years subject to an overall minimum term of 70 years
M&S Bank All leasehold properties must have 30 years remaining on the lease beyond the term of the mortgage at the outset.
Magellan Homeloans At least 55 Years at application and no less than 35 years at the end of the mortgage term.
Manchester Building Society Mortgage Term plus 30 years.
Market Harborough Building Society Mortgage term plus 50 years
Masthaven Bank Mortgage term plus 75 years.
Metro Bank plc For residential and buy to let transactions, at least 50 years at the end of the mortgage term.
Molo Finance Buy to Let Mortgages A minimum unexpired lease term of 50 years must remain at the end of the mortgage term.
Monmouthshire Building Society 80 years remaining on completion of the loan.
Mortgage Agency Services 50 Year unexpired at application, 25 years at the end of the mortgage term
Mortgage Express The lease must have at least 25 years remaining at the end of the mortgage term
Mortgage Express No 2
National Counties Building Society A minimum of 50 years must remain at the end of the mortgage term.
National Westminster Bank plc Mortgage term plus 30 years. For a Lifetime Mortgage, the term must be no less than 150 years minus the age of the Borrower.
Nationwide Building Society Our minimum unexpired lease term is 55 years subject to at least 30 years remaining at the end of the mortgage term.
Report to the issuing office if the lease term is shorter than that stated on the offer and has less than 100 years remaining. (There is no requirement to report if the lease term is lower than that stated on the offer but still has 100 years or more to run, or if the lease term is longer than that stated on the offer).NEW BUILD PROPERTIES (includes office conversions)
The following are not acceptable:
– The unexpired lease term is less than 125 years on a new build flat or 250 years on a new build house (does not apply to Shared Ownership)
– Starting ground rent is more than 0.1% of the property value
The lease must be amended to comply with the above. If not the case cannot proceed. Please advise us where the case cannot proceed.
Ground rents and event fees:
Ground rent and other event fees must be reasonable at all times during the lease term. For example, it is acceptable for ground rent escalation to be linked to RPI (Retail Price Index) or a similar index and where this is the case we do not need to be advised. However, unreasonable multipliers of ground rent will not be permitted, for example, doubling every 5, 10 or 15 years. These must be referred to us and we will advise if our mortgage offer remains valid. If you are unsure as to whether the terms of a lease are unreasonable, please refer the details to us.
Nedbank Private Wealth Ltd We require am unexpired lease term of 75 years.
New Street Mortgages 85 years from the date of completion of the mortgage
NRAM Ltd The mortgage terms plus 25 years.
Paragon Buy to Let Mortgages The unexpired term of the lease must have a minimum of 85 years at the commencement of the mortgage term and a minimum unexpired lease term of 65 years must remain at the end of the mortgage term.
Paragon Residential Owner-Occupied Mortgages The unexpired term of the lease must have a minimum of 85 years at the commencement of the mortgage term and a minimum unexpired lease term of 65 years must remain at the end of the mortgage term.
Paratus AMC Ltd 50 years unexpired at the end of the mortgage term.
Parity Trust Mortgage term plus 35 years
Pepper Money The lease must have a minimum unexpired term of 85 years at the time of application.
Platform (a trading name of The Co-operative Bank p.l.c.) 70 years unexpired at application, 30 years at the end of the mortgage term, except where the mortgage application is pursuant to Platform’s participation in the Government’s Help to Buy Shared Equity scheme, in which case (a) the unexpired lease term must not be less than 250 years for new-build houses and not less than 125 years for new-build flats and (b) ground rent must be reasonable at all times and any escalation must be linked to RPI (Retail Price Index) or a similar index.
Precise Mortgages (Charter Court Financial Services Ltd) 70 years unexpired on the lease at completion of the loan advance.
Principality Building Society You should notify the Society where the unexpired term of the lease is 85 years or less. The Society’s lending policy is that it requires a minimum unexpired lease term of 85 years.
Rooftop Mortgages Ltd
Saffron Building Society There must be a minimum of 50 years unexpired lease remaining at the end of the mortgage term.
Sainsbury’s Bank The unexpired term should be no less than 85 years at the commencement of the mortgage term.
Santander UK plc Our minimum unexpired lease term is 55 years from completion, subject to at least 30 years remaining at the end of the mortgage term (an individual case instruction may provide for a shorter unexpired term). However, you must report the unexpired lease term to us and await our instructions if:
1. the unexpired term assumed by our valuer is between 55 and 82 years, but the actual unexpired term differs by more than one year (whether longer or shorter); or
2. the unexpired term assumed by our valuer is more than 82 years but the actual unexpired term is less than 82 years; or
3. no valuation report is provided
We will accept a lease that has been extended under the provisions of the Leasehold Reform Act 1993 provided statutory compensation would be available to the leaseholder.
Santander UK plc for Alliance & Leicester mortgages only Our minimum unexpired lease term is 55 years from completion, subject to at least 30 years remaining at the end of the mortgage term (an individual case instruction may provide for a shorter unexpired term). However, you must report the unexpired lease term to us and await our instructions if:
1. the unexpired term assumed by our valuer is between 55 and 82 years, but the actual unexpired term differs by more than one year (whether longer or shorter); or
2. the unexpired term assumed by our valuer is more than 82 years but the actual unexpired term is less than 82 years; or
3. no valuation report is providedWe will accept a lease that has been extended under the provisions of the Leasehold Reform Act 1993 provided statutory compensation would be available to the leaseholder.
Scottish Building Society Unexpired term of lease must be at least 50 years at end of mortgage term.
Scottish Widows Bank Minimum of 70 years unexpired at the start of the mortgage.
Secure Trust Bank PLC 85 years from the date of the mortgage.,
Skipton Building Society 85 years from the date of completion of the mortgage
St James Place Bank Minimum 70 years from the date of the mortgage.
State Bank of India UK The unexpired term of the lease must have a minimum of 55 years at the commencement of the mortgage term and a minimum unexpired lease term of 30 years must remain at the end of the mortgage term.
Swansea Building Society Mortgage Term plus 50 years
Tesco Bank (a trading name of Tesco Personal Finance plc) Mortgage term plus 30 years (subject to a minimum unexpired term of 55 years). Please contact us as detailed in 1.11b should this not be the case.
For new build properties, the following lease terms are not acceptable:
– The unexpired lease term on a new build flat is less than 125 years
– The unexpired lease term on a new build house is less than 250 years
If the lease cannot be amended to comply with the above, the case cannot proceed. Please advise us immediately where the case cannot proceed.
Contact point as detailed in 1.11b.
The Mortgage Business Minimum 70 years from the date of the mortgage.
The Mortgage Lender Limited For Residential (owner occupied) mortgages the unexpired term of the lease should not be less than 40 years at the scheduled end of the mortgage period.

For Buy to Let mortgages the unexpired term of the lease should not be less than 50 years at the scheduled end of the mortgage period.

The Mortgage Works Minimum unexpired lease term is 70 years with 30 years remaining at the end of the mortgage term. Report to the issuing office if the lease term is shorter than that stated within the Offer and has less than 100 years remaining.(There is no requirement to report if the lease term is lower than that stated on the Offer but still has 100 years or more to run, or if the lease term is longer than that stated on the Offer).

NEW BUILD PROPERTIES (includes office conversions)
The following are not acceptable:
– The unexpired lease term on a new build flat is less than 125 years
– The unexpired lease term on a new build house is less than 250 years
– Starting ground rent is more than 0.1% of the property value
The lease must be amended to comply with the above. If not the case cannot proceed. Please advise us where the case cannot proceed.
Ground rents and event fees:
Ground rent and other event fees must be reasonable at all times during the lease term. For example, it is acceptable for ground rent escalation to be linked to RPI (Retail Price Index) or a similar index and where this is the case we do not need to be advised. However, unreasonable multipliers of ground rent will not be permitted, for example, doubling every 5, 10 or 15 years. These must be referred to us and we will advise if our mortgage offer remains valid. If you are unsure as to whether the terms of a lease are unreasonable, please refer the details to us.

The Royal Bank of Scotland plc Mortgage term plus 30 years. For a Lifetime Mortgage, the term must be no less than 150 years minus the age of the Borrower.
The Royal Bank of Scotland plc Direct Line Mortgages Mortgage term plus 30 years and sixty years remaining at drawdown.
The Royal Bank of Scotland plc Direct Line One Mortgage term plus 30 years.
The Royal Bank of Scotland plc First Active Mortgage term plus 30 years.
The Royal Bank of Scotland plc Natwest one Account Mortgage term plus 30 years.
The Royal Bank of Scotland plc One Account Mortgage term plus 30 years.
The Royal Bank of Scotland plc Virgin One Mortgage term plus 30 years.
The Tipton & Coseley Building Society Mortgage term plus 60 years with a minimum of 85 years outstanding at completion.
Topaz Finance Ltd Mortgage term plus 35 years.
TSB Bank plc Mortgage term plus 30 years subject to an overall minimum term of 70 years
Ulster Bank Ltd Mortgage term plus 30 years.
Vida Homeloans For capital and interest mortgages there should be 40 years of the lease remaining at the end of the mortgage term. For interest only or part interest only there should be 70 years of the lease remaining at the end of the mortgage term.
Virgin Money plc 85 years at the time of completion. If it’s less, we require it to be extended on or before completion.
Whistletree (a trading name of TSB Bank plc) The mortgage term plus 30 years
Yorkshire Bank Home Loans Ltd Mortgage term plus 30 years.
Yorkshire Building Society 85 years from the date of completion of the mortgage. Please ensure that you explain the implications of a short term lease to the borrower.
Zephyr Mortgages For Zephyr: the requirement is for a minimum unexpired lease term of 70 years remaining at the end of the mortgage term.

You must refer to Zephyr if onerous obligations are determined.

Extending your short lease – contact our specialists now

if you’re thinking about a UK lease extension, make sure you instruct a specialist solicitor to help you because the legal process involved is complex. Our lease extension team concentrate on lease extension and enfranchisement only – so we have the specialist expertise you need. So, for FREE initial phone legal advice:

  • Call our specialists now on FREEPHONE 0800 1404544 or
  • Send us an email via the contact form below.

    Bournemouth Lease Extension Solicitors

    SPECIALISTS IN EXTENDING LEASES

    Bournemouth has one of the largest number of leasehold flats in the country – which is Bournemouth lease extension solicitors. Image of local block of flatshardly surprising, given that it is one of the UK’s most beautiful seaside resorts [now with its own premiership football team in AFC Bournemouth!], Bournemouth is a popular place for people to want to live and According to the latest 10 year census in 2011, the town has a population of 183,491 . As a result, prices have been pushed higher in recent years, making it difficult for young families and couples looking to get onto the property ladder.

    With renting not an ideal long-term solution, many people are turning to leasehold flats as a way of effectively owning their own property without the enormous costs associated with a freehold arrangement. After all, the market price of a freehold property is generally much more expensive than a leasehold deal, which still enables you to own your own home. Owning a leasehold flat does have their downsides, but in an area like Bournemouth they’re ideal for getting that first foot on the housing ladder

    But if you own a long leasehold flat in Bournemouth, or indeed anywhere else, then at some stage, that lease will need to be extended, unless you want to lose the ownership of your property and become a renting tenant.

    Want to know more about Lease Extension? Call our specialist solicitors on [01202] 834450 or free on FREEPHONE 0800 1404544 for FREE initial phone advice – with no strings attached.

    DO I NEED A BOURNEMOUTH LEASE EXTENSION SPECIALIST?

    o Extending your lease can prove tricky– there are critical deadlines which can be easy to miss, and The legislation governing lease extensions is particularly hard to interpret

    o It’s highly likely that your landlord will appoint their own specialist lease extension solicitor

    o Sadly, many landlords simply don’t cooperate when it comes to extending your lease. They might simply try to turn down your request for lease extension or haggle unnecessarily over the price [watch out – this is a particular trick played by far too many landlords when your lease is approaching the critical 80 year term]. Whilst many are perfectly reasonable, if you’re stuck with an awkward landlord, a specialist solicitor can prove essential. They can negotiate a fair price for your lease extension – but if your landlord simply refused to cooperate, they will have the expertise to help you with an application to the First Tier Property Tribunal

    o Your Bournemouth lease extension solicitor can help you gather all the necessary information for your, lease extension, help in appointing the right t surveyor value your lease extension, draft all the necessary legal documents and sort out all post-completion matters

    IDENTIFYING YOUR LEASE EXTENSION SPECIALIST

    Only a handful of law firms specialise in lease extension. Most property solicitors will, at most, only have handled the odd lease extension in their career – and in our experience, sadly they often don’t know what they’re doing.

    Here at Bonallack & Bishop, we have all the leasehold extension expertise you need. We have a team of three dedicated  UK lease extension specialists with a history of helping thousands of to extend their lease over the last 25 years.

    We are also members of ALEP- the Association of Leasehold Enfranchisement Practitioners, the only national organisation of specialist lease extension surveyors and solicitors.

    But you don’t need to take our word for it – here is a testimonial from a Poole based surveyor who specialises in lease extensions.

    “ I have worked alongside [Bonallack and Bishop] on numerous lease extensions and have been impressed by [their] efficiency, regular communication and knowledge of the subject.”

    Stephen Higley, Smith Robinson Higley Ltd, Chartered Surveyors, Poole

    MAKE SURE YOU EXTEND YOUR LEASE BEFORE THE TERM FLAT DROPS BELOW 80 YEARS

    The bad news is, if you have  bought a flat with a short lease, or the lease is still relatively long but has just dipped below 80 years, you’re going to have to pay the freeholder more to extend it. Why?

    That’s very simple.

    As soon as any lease dips below 80 years – even by just one day, the landlord is entitled to charge you an additional premium for extending your lease – and this premium is known as the “marriage value”.

    So, if your lease has just over 80 years to run, don’t mess around – get your lease extension as soon as possible. Even if you can’t afford a full 90-year extension, it’s very worth getting a short extension – to keep your options open, and to keep your lease above the magic 80 year figure.

    Remember – however many years your lease has to run, extending the term of that lease is going to cost you more, the longer you leave it

    NOT JUST EXTENDING LEASES

    Our specialist Leasehold team represent leaseholders, freeholders, property management companies, landlords and residents associations, providing jargon-free legal services and practical legal advice.and we don’t just extend leases – we also deal with the following specialist leasehold work:

    • Claims for Collective Enfranchisement (also known as Freehold or Leasehold Enfranchisement)
    • Forming a right to manage company
    • License to alters
    • New leases
    • Leasehold disputes – including ground rent and service charge arrears

    THINKING OF A LEASE EXTENSION BOURNEMOUTH? CALL 01202 834450 TODAY

    We run most of our leasehold extensions cases without needing to see you – taking by e-mail, phone and video call – though we are equally happy if you want to come into the office to see us.

    We can give you a quote for your lease extension and answer your initial queries by email – or we can arrange to ring you back at a time convenient to you, if you prefer.

    So for FREE initial phone advice about your lease extension, get in touch with our team by

    • Complete the email contact form below,
    • Or call us now on [01202] 834450 or free  on FREEPHONE 0800 1404544

      Lease Extension Valuations

      My Lease Extension Valuation – do I really need a specialist surveyor?

      Absolutely. If you are thinking about extending the lease on your flat under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 (as amended), then you really do need to get in touch with a specialist surveyor who regularly deals with these kind of valuations sort of work.

      Why? Valuing a lease extension premium is extremely specialist work requiring a complex calculation which should be undertaken by a suitably qualified and experienced surveyor. Premium valuation work is outside the area of expertise of any solicitor, even one specialising in lease extension.

      Need the right lease extension valuation? We can introduce you to the right surveyor from our national network of specialists as part of our one-stop shop service.  Call us now on FREEPHONE 0800 1404544 for FREE initial phone advice.

      How will a specialist surveyor help me?

      Your valuer will advise you of two things,

      • the first being the likely premium payable for the freehold and
      • a lower figure to include in the Initial Notice to be offered for the freehold.

      That offer figure will be intentionally lower so as to allow scope for negotiation.  It is also critical that the offer figure is reasonable – as otherwise, the freeholder could claim that your Notice is invalid.

      Marriage Value and Lease Extension

      If the lease on your property has less than 80 years left and you want to extend it, then the Leasehold Reform Act of 1993 states that you have to pay an additional cost to the freeholder. This cost is known as the “marriage value” and there is a great deal of confusion around what it means and how it is calculated.

      How does Marriage Value work?

      In basic terms, the “marriage value” is a difference in value for both the freeholder and leaseholder of the property with its 80 year lease, and the value of that lease if it is extended for another 90 years. It is called the marriage value as the value of the property plus the extended lease when they are “married” together is more than the value of just the property or the extended lease by itself.

      According to legislation, the freeholder or the landlord is legally entitled to a share of this marriage value. In the past this share was open to negotiation, but is now fixed at 50%. The marriage value itself can vary according to the number of years which are left to run on the lease when the leaseholder decides to make their application. There is an unbreakable connection between the market value of the property and the length of the lease, so if the lease is allow to carry on decreasing, the property’s value will decrease too.

      From a freeholder’s point of view, their 50% share of the marriage value gets larger the longer their leaseholder puts off applying for their lease extension after the 80 years milestone passes. Any delays in starting the ball rolling with a lease extension application can therefore be costly for the person making the application.

      There are a couple of other important things to be aware of when it comes to lease extensions and marriage value.

      • Marriage value only ever applies when you are going through a formal or statutory lease extension process.
      • Also, as soon as the term left on the year drops below 80 years, even by a single day, marriage value comes into play. This is worth bearing in mind if your lease is getting perilously close the 80 year mark as delays could end up costing you thousands.

      Remember that the marriage value for extending a lease which has more than 80 years to run is set at 0%.

      Marriage Value – 3 Golden Rules

      If there are three “golden rules” to take away from the whole topic of marriage value they are:

      1.      Never put off extending your lease. A canny leaseholder will make sure to start the process of extending their lease well before the 80 year mark starting looming on the horizon.

      2.      As soon as marriage value comes into play it will cost a lot more to extend the lease and is financially much better for your freeholder. It is not unheard of for freeholders to drag their feet over the process if the 80 year deadline isn’t too far away in the hope of getting more money.

      3.      If you’re in a property where the lease has already dropped below 80 years, every month you delay extending the lease is costing you money and increasing the marriage value.

      This can be a complex area of property law, so seek the advice of a specialist lease extension solicitor who can guide you through the process, making sure you keep expenses to a minimum and avoid traps.

      Finding the right specialist surveyor for your valuation

      Only a few surveyors have the right specialist experience to value your premium accurately.

      Most surveyors, while they are more than competent at routine valuation work, simply have little idea or practical experience of the specific calculations and factors involved when valuing the premium for a leasehold extension. Choosing a surveyor with plenty of practical experience of leasehold extension premium valuation and negotiation is simply essential.

      Using a professional expert witness at the First-Tier Property Tribunal

      If negotiations between the freeholder and the leaseholder end in stalemate, the leaseholder’s solicitor will then put the case to the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal. Fortunately, in our experience, around 95% of negotiations are eventually successful, with just a few needing an application to the “First-Tier Tribunal – Property Chamber (Residential Property) for an independent review of the right premium to be paid. (The FTT was previously known as the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal or LVT)

      During the Tribunal the surveyor has the role of acting as an expert witness by preparing and presenting the evidence.

      In Need Of A Specialist Lease Extension Valuation? We Can Help

      Over the last two decades, our specialist lease extension and enfranchisement team have helped thousands of lease owners in extending the remaining term of their lease. As a result, we have built up a network of specialist lease extensions surveyors nationwide.

      These are surveyors with whom we have worked and who we have found to really understand issues surrounding valuation – and to provide clear and accurate written reports. What’s more, we regularly review our informal panel, to make sure we have the right surveyor for your valuation.

      So wherever your flat is in England and Wales, our team can sort out the legal side – and, if you wish, also arrange to appoint, on your behalf, a surveyor who really understands how to properly value your lease extension premium.

      • Just call us on FREEPHONE 0800 1404544 for a FREE initial phone consultation and a FREE no obligation quote for extending your lease OR

      • Complete the contact form below

        Voluntary Lease Extension – beware the risks

        Is a Voluntary Lease Extension – Outside the Act – the Right Way Forward for Me?

        It may initially appear cheaper and quicker to negotiate an ‘arm’s length’, voluntary and informal leasehold extension with your landlord outside the “Act” (the  Leasehold Reform Housing and Urban Development Act 1993″) – whilst this may seem, on first glance, easier and cheaper, there are very real potential drawbacks and risks.

        Do you have a question about an informal lease extension? Call our expert team on FREEPHONE 0800 1404544 for FREE initial phone advice – with no strings attached.

        As a leaseholder, in the end have to make a practical choice on whether to rely on an informal voluntary lease extension or to choose the formal (statutory) route – and one of the factors you will consider is inevitably overall legal costs – but before you make any final decision, you should always consider the following:

        1. The timescale for extending your lease

        Freeholders can withdraw on any voluntary or informal leasehold extension at any time, leaving leaseholders with no other option than to re-commence the whole lease extension process on a formal basis using the Act (provided, of course, that they qualify for the right to do so).

        Timescales can slip and therefore you cannot force the pace when trying to extend your lease on a voluntary basis – negotiating informally means that you are entirely at the whim of your landlord as to how swiftly the leasehold extension can be wrapped up.

        And whilst some freeholders are decent and ethical, sadly, some simply are not.

        2. Valuation Date

        If a lease’s residual term drops below 80 years, real valuation issues arise. Issuing a formal statutory notice to your landlord of your wish to extend your lease fixes the valuation date at the date the notice was served.

        If there is no formal statutory notice served on your landlord, there is no “fixing” and the landlord will be entitled to request a greater premium if the lease falls below 80 years during voluntary negotiations [this is because, when leases drop below 80 years, the landlord is entitled to an additional payment – known as the “marriage value”]. Click here to read more about marriage value

        In cases where a lease is approaching the magic 80 year cut off date, it’s unfortunately far from uncommon for landlords to agree to a voluntary leasehold extension only to drag their heels until the lease drops below 80 years – only then to turn their back on any agreed informal price and to then demand the additional “marriage value” premium.
        Click here to read more about Lease Extension Marriage Value

        3. The terms of your lease extension

        When negotiating any voluntary leasehold extension outside the Act, there are no real limits on what can be include in the terms of the lease. As a result, negotiating any informal lease extension can be tricky – and can even lead to the abandonment of the whole leasehold extension.

        When issuing a formal application under the Act, when a statutory notice has the served, negotiations are often quicker and less complex – as the freeholder knows exactly what he has to agree to.

        Whilst amending or updating the terms of your lease can be useful if you’re a leaseholder, make sure you have specialist legal advice. When it comes to informal valuations, too many people do without a solicitor – relying on their freeholder to play fair.

        Unfortunately, in the absence of expert legal advice, you’re entirely at the mercy of your freeholder when it comes to amending your lease. What may look like entirely innocent “modernising” clauses could cost you dear in the future.

        One trick played by many freeholders is to update the ground rent review clause in the lease – in exchange for an apparent concession perhaps with a lower premium or a longer lease extension. But that ground rent review update could be catastrophic – with the freeholder building in significant increases in ground rent which build up over the years, either making your lease very expensive to run or alternatively, making your property effectively impossible to sell.

        Don’t ever agree to any change in your lease without making entirely sure you understand what it means for you now and in the future – and the best way of doing so is to get a specialist solicitor on your side.

        4. The costs of extending your lease on a voluntary basis

        Increased legal costs can result from lengthy and complicated negotiations. If a leaseholder has to recommence with a statutory notice, legal costs for work completed in the unsuccessful voluntary process must be paid as well as the dues for an postponement using the Act. Landlords can be left with unrecoverable legal bills if their solicitor has not acquired undertakings from leaseholders’ solicitors to pay costs.

        The size of the premium that the freeholder ends up with with may also increase if the leaseholder is tempted to do without specialist independent valuation advice.

        What’s more, future lease extension or freehold purchase will be more expensive if ground rents have been maintained or increased. Why? Because the amount of ground rent payable is one of the factors taken into account when coming up with the lease extension premium. So increasing your ground rent also means you’re increasing the cost of any future lease extension.

        Leaseholders also have the right to challenge the reasonableness of the landlord’s costs if extending under the Act – something that simply not available with any voluntary lease extension.

        The Act does not dictate that the statutory process must take a long time – it merely delivers timescales enforceable in the court or tribunal. Both parties should consider using a notice to protect them if matters do not proceed smoothly, even where the extension is amicable and could otherwise be done outside the Act.

        Best to wait for two years ownership before applying for your lease extension?

        Leaseholders who have not yet owned their lease for two years should consider the value of waiting and proceeding within the protection of the Act rather than being held to ransom, before rushing into a voluntary extension.

        Voluntary Lease Extensions – are there actually any advantages?

        Yes, in some circumstances, an informal lease extension may be the best way to go – but that depends entirely on your freeholder – and in particular how reasonable they are and whether they’re willing to cooperate.

        If you do get a helpful freeholder, here are the advantages of going down the voluntary route;

        • Speed – you’re not hampered by a statutory timetable – so with swift and cooperative freeholder, the whole thing could be tied up much more quickly
        • You can vary the length of the lease extension – the statutory route gives you just one option – 90 more years on your lease. In contrast an informal lease extension means you can agree an extension for whatever period you like with your landlord. This often comes in most useful when your lease is approaching the crucial 80 year stage, or when you are thinking of selling up and know that the relatively short length of the lease is going to mean problems getting a good price. You can agree any length of extension you like – as little as 10 years is not unusual. but these sort of short lease extensions are far from perfect. Apart from all the dangers listed above, you will also find that you will probably end up paying more proportionately for a short lease than the full 90 years, and bear in mind you’re still going to have to pay potentially legal and surveying costs for you and your freeholder. So while it may resolve a problem, a short lease extension may well prove quite an expensive solution.
        • You can vary the terms of your lease – if cash is short but you need to extend your lease, then some landlords agree to a lower premium in return for an increase in ground rent. But beware. This could rebound on you – as indicated above, an  increasingly higher ground rent in the future could affect the value of your property or even make it virtually impossible to sell on the open market.

        What are main differences between the informal and statutory lease extension routes?

        Can I just approach my landlord for a lease extension? Yes you can.

        The question should perhaps be: ‘why would you want to approach your landlord for an informal lease extension?’

        The easiest way to answer that and other questions is to compare the advantages and disadvantages of that making an informal lease extension with making an application under the Leasehold Reform Act 1993.

        Here is a summary of those differences:

        Questions Informal lease application Application under the Leasehold Reform Act 1993
        Do I have to have owned the property for 2 or more years before I make the application? No. Yes.  Two years is the minimum period you must have owned (but not necessarily lived in) the property.
        I am guaranteed a ‘peppercorn rent’ with the extended lease? No – your landlord/freeholder could insist on a higher ground rent. Yes.  You will obtain a peppercorn ground rent for the combined period covering the remaining duration of the original lease and the extended lease.
        Is any agreement to extend my leases I make with my landlord binding? No.  Your landlord can initially agree to extend the lease and then change his/her mind. Yes – once you have served your initial notice on your landlord they become part of the process and must respond in line with the requirements of the Act.
        Can I expect the premium for the extension to based on current market rates or a recognised formula and be reasonable? No.  There is nothing to stop your landlord/freeholder from asking for a grossly inflated premium for your extension and demanding payment of suspiciously hefty costs.  He or she will probably be aware that the calculation of the premium doesn’t have to be guided by the relevant schedule of the Leasehold Reform Act 1993. Yes.  Schedule 13, Part II of the Act states specifically that the premium shall be the total of:  

        ·       the diminution in the value of the landlord’s interest in the flat

        ·       the landlord’s share of the marriage value

        ·       Compensation for loss arising from the grant of the new lease.

        Can I challenge my landlord/freeholder about the level of his costs and the leasehold premium if I consider them to be unreasonable? Yes.  However your landlord is under no obligation to reduce the level of his costs and the premium as a result of your challenge. With informal lease applications, negotiations can rapidly sink to the level of ‘take it or leave it’. Yes and under the Act you have the right to formally challenge the reasonableness of your landlord’s offer and then, if agreement still can’t be reached, to take your case to the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal an for independent determining of the matter.
        Can I expect my landlord to grant me the extension within a reasonable timescale? No.  Your landlord is not obliged to tie him/herself to any pre-agreed timescale and has the potential freedom, if he is unfortunately grasping and calculating enough, to delay granting you your lease extension until the remaining duration of the original lease has fallen below eighty years and the marriage value can be factored into the premium (it remains at 0% whilst the lease has eighty or more unexpired years left). Yes.  The Leasehold Reform Act sets out an application timetable binding on both leaseholder and landlord/freeholder.  The clock also stops ticking on the valuation of your property on the date on which your initial notice under the Act is served on your landlord.

        THINKING OF AN INFORMAL LEASE EXTENSION OUTSIDE THE ACT? CALL US TODAY

        Wherever you live in England and Wales, we can help you extend your lease- whether you decide on the voluntary or statutory route. We can manage the process from start to finish,  keeping in contact with you regularly using email, telephone – or Skype video if you prefer .

        Our team have helped thousands of people extend their lease nationwide – we can help you too.

        • Call our experts now FREEPHONE 0800 1404544 for a FREE initial phone consultation and a FREE quote for your lease extension, OR
        • Get in touch using the contact form below.

          Who is exempt from lease extension?

          The vast majority of residential leases originally granted for at least 21 years, are eligible for lease extension.Under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993, lessees have a legal right in extending the lease on their flats for an additional 90 years without ground rent, although they will need to pay the freeholder to take up this right.

          The right the right to extend your lease – are you or your property exempt?

          However, certain leaseholders however are completely exempt from the right to a lease extension, namely if:

          • it is a building with fewer than four flats with a resident landlord

          • the flat has been sub-let by the leaseholder on a long lease (21+ years)

          • the freeholder is part of a charitable housing trust and the flat is provided by the charity as part of charitable work

          • the original lease had less than 21 years remaining

          • the property is a National Trust building

          • the property is owned by the Crown

          • the property is within the boundaries of a cathedral precinct

          • they are a short-term tenant

          • they have a business lease

          • they have been registered as the owner for less than two years

          • they own more than two flats in the same building

          My property is exempt from the right to lease extension. Can I still agree an informal lease extension with the freeholder?

          Although in all other cases it is your legal right to apply for an extended lease, these factors not necessarily make you outright exempt.

          So yes, it imay still be possible to attempt to arrange a leasehold extension via an informal negotiation with your landlord.

          For advice to trust from specialist Lease Extension Solicitors, call us today

          Instruct our team of specialist lease extension solicitors who will guide you through this complex process and help eliminate the worry from what can be a stressful situation for both lessees and freehold

          For FREE initial phone advice, with no strings attached,

          • Give one of our team a call now on FREEPHONE 0800 1404544, or
          • Send us an email via the contact form below.

            Executors – the right to extend a lease

            Do executors have the right to apply for a statutory lease extension?Executors – the right to extend a lease. Specialist Solicitors. Logo Of Association of Leasehold Enfranchisement Practitioners

            Yes – and this can prove very useful. Provided that they do so within two years of the date of grant of probate, the executors can apply to extend the lease on a residential leasehold flat or house by serving a formal notice of claim.

            The only limitation is that the deceased must have qualified for that lease extension themselves – including having owned the property themselves for a period of at least two years.

            As a result, an executor can either go ahead with extending the lease themselves, or can put a property on the market with the benefit of the notice of claim, which can then be assigned onto the purchaser – so the new purchaser immediately has the right to a leasehold extension upon completion of the sale without having to wait two years, and the vendors do not have to go through the expense of paying to extend the lease themselves.

            What is an informal lease extension?

            It’s also worth noting that although to qualify for a statutory or formal lease extension, certain conditions need to have been met by the deceased (and by applying for a statutory lease extension, the freeholder cannot refuse a 90 year lease extension at a reasonable price),  there is always the possibility of a an informal or voluntary lease extension – which can simply be negotiated with the freeholder.

            I am an executor – why might I want a lease extension?

            That’s simple.

            An executor’s duty is of course to collect in and distribute the deceased’s estate. But if the estate includes a flat (or more unusually a leasehold house) with a short lease, then arranging for a lease extension should increase the value of the flat – and thus the value of the estate – not to mention the marketability of the property in question.

            And how short is a short lease? Anything below 70 years gets increasingly hard to sell – not least because these days many mortgage companies simply won’t loan against a flat with a lease term that low. And a lot of purchasers aren’t keen on flats with less than 80 years left  to run.

            And that 80 year point is important. Why? That’s because the very moment that the  remaining term drops below 80 years, the price of the lease extension goes up. So again if the remaining lease term is approaching 80 years – that’s another good reason to extend the lease , to avoid an increased premium payable to the freeholder t.

            Need expert help with your lease extension?

            Our team is really specialist – lease extension work is all they do for clients with leasehold property throughout England and Wales. To instruct us, or for FREE initial phone advice,

            • call us now on FREEPHONE 0800 1404544 OR
            • email us using the contact form below.

              10 Things You Need to Know About Leasehold Property

              Leasehold and freehold are two very different ways of owning residential property in England and Wales. Most people understand the basic concept behind freehold – but far fewer people really appreciate what owning a leasehold property really means.

              1. Leaseholders don’t actually own their property. They just buy the right to live there for whatever time period is stated on the lease, subject to some conditions.Depending on the terms of the lease, they will probably have to get the permission of the freeholder if they want to make certain structural amendments or improvements to their property.

              2. Most flats bought and sold in the UK are on a leasehold basis.

              3. On rare occasions, houses can also be leasehold, although it is much more common for houses to be freehold instead.

              4. The owner of the property is the freeholder, who is ultimately in charge.

              5. If the lease expires, the leaseholders might have to leave their homes, or might have to pay rent to the freeholder. There is very little long term security in this situation – just a possibility of retaining an ongoing temporary or periodic lease.

              6. There are more than 2 million leasehold properties in England alone, and the number is growing every day. Since the start of the 21st century, far more leasehold flats and apartments have been built than houses.

              7. People living in a leasehold property pay an annual or monthly charge to the freeholder towards the upkeep of the building. The freeholder is responsible for arranging maintenance of the block unless the leaseholders have joined together to either buy the freehold of the block or exercised their right to manage

              8. Properties with short leases are worth a lot less than properties with a long lease. This is because that if the lease expires, the property returns to the freeholder who can then sell it again.

              9. .A shorter lease means that the freeholder is able to charge leaseholders more to extend the lease.

              10. The answer, of course, to short lease problems is a lease extension –  and don’t forget, you have the legal right to extend your lease term by an additional 90 years –  whether your freeholder likes it or not.

              Thinking of a Lease Extension? Contact us today

              Our team are genuine leasehold extensions experts – so for great advice on extending your lease, please contact us today;

              • Call us now on [01722] 422300, or
              • Send us an email using the contact form below.

                Rebranding our lease extension team

                2017 sees a change of name for the highly specialist lease extension team here at Bonallack and Bishop.

                In future the team will be known as “The Leasehold Property Team”.

                Why? That’s simple.

                It certainly doesn’t mean that we are any less committed to lease extension work or any less specialist in it.

                On the contrary – in the most recent half year took our expert lawyers took on 180 individual lease extensions, for both large freeholders, small freeholders and numerous individual leaseholders. In fact we are looking to increase the number of fl;at and house  leases we extend every year to at least 400. That makes us one of the most specialist leasehold extension teams in England and Wales – out of a total of over 10,000 law firms nationwide.

                No, the reason why we are changing the name is that increasingly we do so much more leasehold law work in addition to lease extension. Not only do we complete numerous collective enfranchisement projects (that’s buying the freehold of your block together with some of your follow leaseholders), but our expert team carry out numerous title splits as well as a whole host of other leasehold law work including service charge and ground rent disputes, lease variation, forfeiture and licence for alterations.

                And what’s more our leasehold work is growing. The team is already four strong and we are looking to recruit a fifth member of the team this March.

                FOR SPECIALIST LEASEHOLD LAW ADVICE – CALL US TODAY

                When it comes to all aspects of the  law surrounding leases, our specialists can help you wherever you live in England and Wales. We don’t even need to see you face-to-face – like many of our other clients, we can take this your instructions by e-mail, phone and Skype video:

                • Just call us on FREEPHONE 0800 1404544 for a FREE initial phone consultation  OR
                • Complete the email contact form below

                  Lease extension in Newcastle

                  More than 280,000 people call the city of Newcastle home, and if you own a flat in the city, your lease will need to be extended one day. What’s more, did you know that you have the legal right to force your freeholder to extend the term of your lease – by up to an additional 90 years?

                  Newcastle is the most populous city in the north-east of England, with a booming cultural centre and enormous regeneration having been carried out in the city since its decline from an industrial heartland in the 1970s. As a result, Newcastle and the surrounding area has a large number of leasehold flats as well as some leasehold houses. And the average price of flats in the city in 2016 was £136,778, according to Right Move.

                  The problems with short leases

                  The problem with owning any flat or apartment owned under a long lease [i.e. the lease was originally granted for at least 21 years] is that the term of that lease will gradually decline. The shorter the lease the less the property is worth and the harder it is to sell or mortgage.

                  If your flat or apartment has 85 years or less to run, we strongly suggest you look at extending your lease as soon as possible..

                  WHY EXTEND MY LEASE NOW?

                  Your lease can be extended at any time but delaying your lease extension can cause problems later and could turn out to be a lot more expensive than you planned. So why extend your lease now?

                  The cost of extend your lease is rising, day by day

                  In the current economic climate, there are two reasons why putting off your leasehold  extension is only costing you more money. Firstly, as your lease gradually gets shorter, it’s getting gradually more expensive, day by day, to extend it. Worse still, with house prices currently rising, that means the value of your property is rising – and one of the factors in assessing the premium for your lease extension is the value of your property. So, the more your flat is worth, the more you have to pay to extend your lease.

                  In fact, specialist lease extension surveyors in London recently estimated that the cost of extending a lease, in London at least, is going up by whacking 12% each and every year – if that continues, that means that the cost any flat owner will have to have to pay to extend their lease could double in under seven years!

                  Extending your lease takes time

                  Whilst coming to an informal lease extension agreement with your freeholder can sometimes be sorted out relatively quickly – you have no control over the process, and there are some real risks with this voluntary route get a lease extension. The alternative, and the only way to make sure you have control and can ensure you gain that lease extension, is through the formal, or statutory, route. The problem with this. Formal route is that there are certain inbuilt notice periods and as result, it usually takes around six months for your lease extension to be completed. If you’re not thinking of selling up, then it’s not so much of a problem. But if you do come to sell, and have found the new home of your dreams, and then find that you can’t extend your lease in under six months, the whole chain could collapse.

                  Extending your lease makes your flat easier to sell

                  Flats with long lease terms are much easier to sell – purchasers prefer them – and they attract higher prices.

                  What’s more, mortgage lenders seem to be increasingly reluctant to lend on any property with a short lease –although 20 years ago it was possible to get a mortgage on a flat with say 50 years left, many lenders now refuse to lend, if the term is below 70 or even 80 years. So even if your flat was built fairly recently, say in 1970 with a original 99 year lease, any prospective buyer will find it nearly impossible to get a mortgage to fund the purchase.

                  DO I REALLY NEED A SPECIALIST SOLICITOR FOR MY LEASE EXTENSION?

                  You might think that it’s really easy to extend your own lease. After all, you only need to ask your freeholder, right? In fact, many freeholders will refuse to cooperate or will drag out negotiations to the point where they hope leaseholders will simply give in. For example, when the remaining term of a lease is approaching the 80 year point, it’s not unusual for unscrupulous freeholders to go slow with the clear aim of letting the lease drop below the 80-year mark – when they can charge you an additional premium to extend your lease – which will cost you thousands of pounds.

                  Although it involves a complex area of law, extending a lease doesn’t need to be a nightmare if you instruct a specialist solicitor – to help you through what can be tricky legal process which requires patience, experience and expertise.

                  By appointing one of our team as your solicitor, you can rest assured that your lease extension is being dealt with by a genuine specialist. They don’t dabble – extending leases is all they do.

                  TO SUM UP – OUR ADVICE

                  In short, our advice is simple – don’t delay – extend your lease now.

                  YOUR NEWCASTLE LEASE EXTENSION – HOW WE CAN HELP

                  With over 25 years experience in many thousands of lease extension extensions for leaseholders and freeholders alike, we have the expertise to make sure your lease extension goes smoothly;

                  • We offer FREE initial telephone advice – just call us on FREEPHONE 0800 1404544

                  • We work with the only Newcastle-based surveyor who really understands how to value your lease – like solicitors, lease extension surveyors need to be specialists. Very few surveyors are able to value the premium required for lease extension accurately. We are happy to instruct him on your behalf to value your lease extension – as part of our one-stop shop service

                  • We manage your lease extension timetable

                  • We draft all the legal documents and notices

                  • If there is a dispute regarding your lease extension, we can take the matter to the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal [ recently re-titled the ”First-tier tribunal – Property Chamber (Residential Property)] – but only if it’s strictly necessary, which thankfully it very rarely is.

                  1 KEY QUESTION

                  If you’re still not sure whether you need our specialist team – maybe you have a long-standing Newcastle-based solicitor you really like – just ask them once in question. “How many lease extensions have a completed the last year?”

                  THINKING OF A LEASE EXTENSION IN NEWCASTLE? CALL OUR SPECIALISTS NOW

                  Over the last 25 years, our solicitors have been involved in many thousands of lease extensions – for clients throughout England and Wales. For most all of our lease extension work, we deal with clients solely through telephone, email or Skype.

                  And don’t forget – initial phone advice from experts is FREE – so what have you got to lose?

                  • Simply, call our team now on FREEPHONE 0800 1404544 or,

                  • Fill out the email contact form below

                    Sheffield Lease Extension Solicitors

                    Sheffield , once a comparatively run-down former mining area and heavy industrial hub, has boomed in recent years to become a metropolitan hub of culture, industry and total regeneration.

                    This former steel city has seen its gross value added (GVA) grow by 60% since 1997, adding £9.2 billion into the British economy just ten years later in 2007. Its economy is growing at a rate of 5% a year, which is more than the whole of the Yorkshire and Humber region. It’s easy to see, then, why so many people are flocking to live in Sheffield.

                    With freehold properties being at a premium due to the successful regeneration, many people are opting to buy a leasehold flat.

                    If you own the leasehold on a flat, the chances are that you need to renew your lease or will need to do so soon. If you live in Sheffield and are looking to start the lease extension process, our dedicated team of experts would be happy to help.

                    LEASE EXTENSION – THE IMPORTANCE OF INSTRUCTING AN EXPERT

                    The importance of instructing a specialist lease extension solicitor to manage the lease extension process is often underestimated. Some of the reasons for instructing an expert are listed below:

                    • Experts will understand the complicated legal terminology involved in lease extensions and the importance of meeting the strict deadlines involved

                    • Your landlord is likely to instruct their own specialist solicitor so you owe it to yourself to get one as well

                    • Our expert solicitors have the negotiating skills you need, and a panel of specialist local surveyors, which you are going to need for a proper valuation of the premium to be paid to your freeholder

                    • If your landlord attempts to stall negotiations so that the extension costs you more, an expert solicitor will be able to help you apply to  the First-Tier Property Tribunal (previously known as Leasehold Valuation Tribunal).

                    WHY WE’RE THE RIGHT CHOICE

                    Finding genuine leasehold extension specialists is very difficult. Many solicitors believe that they have the expertise needed to do lease extension work only realising how difficult it is when it’s too late. And we are members of the Association of Leasehold Enfranchisement Practitioners. So for lease extension solicitors you can trust, call our experts.

                    FOR YOUR LEASE EXTENSION IN SHEFFIELD – GET IN TOUCH WITH US TODAY

                    When it comes to extending your lease, our expert team can help you wherever your flat is in England and Wales and we don’t even need to see you – taking your instructions by e-mail, phone and Skype video:

                    • Just call us on FREEPHONE 0800 1404544 for a FREE initial phone consultation and a FREE quote for your lease extension, OR
                    • Complete the email contact form below