Buying the freehold helps leaseholders frustrated by rising ground rent and service charges

Published: 05/06/2013

If you own a leasehold property and are frustrated by the seemingly ever increasing ground rent and service charges, perhaps now is the time to look at buying the freehold.

A leasehold property is, in effect, a long term rental in the sense that you have purchased the right to live there or to rent it out for a set period. You do not however own the land on which the property stands and, as a result, are required to pay a ground rent and service charges to the freeholder.

However, a leaseholder (or leaseholders if the property in question is a block of flats) has the right to buy the freehold of their property whenever they wish. This is known as enfranchisement.

Evading rising ground rent and service charges is just one reason to buy the freehold for your property. The other, more importantly, surrounds its value as GW LET solicitor, Rob Denman, explains:

“Owning a leasehold property with less than 80 years on the term will impact on your ability to sell or remortgage your property and, as a consequence, significantly diminish a property’s value.

“As a member of the Association of Leasehold Enfranchisement Practitioners (ALEP), we can provide specialist legal advice on lease extensions, individual and collective enfranchisement and Leasehold Valuation Tribunal (LVT) cases.”

Content correct at time of publication

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