How to extend your lease

 

If you own a property that is leasehold, as the term of your lease decreases so the value of your property is also affected. A lease extension can be very useful in protecting the future value of your home, and also its potential resale price.

If you rent property, you will want to consider the law on lease renewal. If your current lease is less than 70 years, you should look into lease extension as soon as possible. Call us and we will recommend a specialist property lawyer to assist you in extending the lease on your property.

Extending a lease

Lease extension may be open to you if you meet these basic criteria:

  • You own the lease of your property that was originally a minimum of 21 years
  • You have owned your property for at least two years

Lease extension law sets out how long you can extend your lease by. Currently this is 90 years added to your existing lease. Once your lease extension is in place, you will usually pay no ground rent on your home for the entire length of the new lease.

Renewing a lease

If you rent premises for your business, you should have a lease agreement with your landlord. Most lease agreements include a clause that gives you the right to renew your lease when your current lease expires. Lease renewal can, however, be a complex process, as your landlord, valuers, surveyors, and yourself, will all have to be taken into consideration.

As a tenant you have some protection under the Landlord and Tenant Act 1954. One of its most important components is that you and your business can’t be automatically thrown out of your property when you current lease comes to an end. The Act also gives you the right to lease renewal in certain circumstances if you meet these criteria. A property solicitor can tell you if you meet these terms.

Using a solicitor

There is a cost for your lease extension. In the past your landlord was able to charge whatever they liked to extend your lease. Today the charge that your landlord will make is based on a number of factors that must be calculated. This is where a property solicitor comes in very handy, as they have experience of dealing with lease extensions and also negotiating with landlords about their compensation for extending your lease.

Handling a lease extension without legal support is not recommended. Your solicitor will be able to interpret the current property law as it impacts on your lease extension and ensure that the fee you are charged by your landlord is fair.

If a dispute arises with your landlord over your application for lease extension, you may have to use a Leasehold Valuation Tribunal to resolve the issues you have. The help and support of a property solicitor will be invaluable if you have to put your case to a tribunal. Property law is highly complex in the area of lease extensions, so always ensure you have qualified legal representation.

Having trouble understanding your lease agreement? See our useful page on how to review a lease.

Is your lease currently less than 70 years and you are thinking about lease extension? Contact Law can put you in touch with a specialist property lawyer who can help you through the process. Please call us on 0800 1777 162 or complete the web-form above.

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