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Buying the Freehold of your Flat
Can we buy the freehold from our landlord?
As an alternative to extending the lease of your flat there also exists a right to join with other flat owners and purchase the freehold from your existing landlord. You will become your own landlord and have control of issues such as the terms of your lease and the management of the building.
Some landlords will be willing to sell the freehold if you approach them but even if they are unwilling to sell, you probably have a legal right to buy the freehold if a majority of the owners of the flats in your building wish to contribute.
There is a strict statutory procedure to follow if you are to exercise your right to buy the freehold. One missed step or deadline will mean that you lose that right and would have to wait until it becomes available again – usually at greater cost.
Before embarking on this process you should appoint a solicitor with knowledge and experience of these procedures. At Martin Tolhurst Solicitors our Lease Extensions team specialise in all aspects of this process and can lead you through the procedure from an initial conversation to the eventual transfer of the freehold to the leaseholders.
What if the landlord wants to sell the freehold to someone else?
There are very few circumstances where the landlord is able to sell the freehold to someone else without offering it to the current leaseholders first. You are protected by law and must be given an opportunity to join with the other flat owners to buy the freehold before the landlord can sell to anyone else.
It is necessary for the majority of the flat owners in your building to join in but provided you have sufficient support you are entitled to buy the freehold on the terms specified by the landlord in their notice. If you do not take up the offer in the notice then the landlord can sell on those terms to a third party at any time during the next 12 months.
It is important to contact our New Enquiries team on 0800 0271452 as soon as you receive the notice so we can ensure you do not lose the opportunity to buy the freehold.