Know your lease!

Being apartment specialists, we are experts in ‘all things leasehold.’ Before selling your apartment, we recommend you fully understand your lease to ensure you speed up the selling process when on the market. It pays to be prepared... 


One of the first things you must do is check the length of your lease. You will face restrictions on your options if it is less than 60/70 years. Most lenders will not approve a mortgage once it is around that sort of threshold, which means your apartment will be less attractive to buyers. This could affect the value of your home as a result. Leases can be up to 999 years, but as time goes by, a lease reduces in length. However, don’t panic – new rules mean you now have a legal right to extend them. By extending under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act, you could add 90 years to the existing lease. Your apartment should then sell quickly and easily, whilst increasing its value too. However, get it sorted before you sell, as extensions are a lengthy process and a potential buyer may not be prepared to wait for the legal paperwork to be completed. We recommend extensions for leases under 80 years.


You also need to be aware of various lease conditions that you must comply with to avoid delays with the transfer of title between yourself and the new buyer. These conditions include references to the freeholder, collecting ground rent, service charges, pets, sub-letting and mortgages.


There are many other aspects to consider which we can provide guidance on so please do give us a call if we can help you.