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No time like the present to extend your lease!

15th April 2020

Many people are aware that once you have owned your leasehold property for two years you have the right to extend it by 90 years and to do away with your ground rent. Many mortgage lenders have made it clear that they disapprove of ground rents that increase during the term of a lease and as time goes by, leases with increasing ground rents are going to become more and more difficult to sell or even re-mortgage.

At a time when most people are trying to conserve their cash resources it may seem counter-intuitive to suggest that now is a good time to spend money on a lease extension. Nevertheless, the price that you will have to pay to extend your lease is unlikely to ever be cheaper and those with foresight will grasp the opportunity now.

One of the major factors that will determine the amount you need to pay your landlord (“the premium”) is the value of the property at the date that you serve the notice commencing your claim. This is defined as the “Open Market Value”, but an open market requires both a willing seller and a willing buyer. At the present moment, willing buyers of leasehold residential flats are few and far between. In consequence, the starting point for calculation of the premium is likely to be between 10-40% less than it was before the beginning of the coronavirus crisis. The lease extension process takes on average 6-8 months by which time residential property values will hopefully have risen back to something close to their pre-crisis levels. The value of the premium that you will need to pay is determined at the date that you commence your claim. The time to act is now-the price will never be cheaper.

I have specialised in dealing with lease extensions for the past 10 years and am happy to discuss without charge or obligation how a lease extension will work for you. Just give me a call on 07976 283972 or email me at dk@bglaw.co.uk

There will never be a better time.