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Why you should commence your North London lease extension


Why you should commence your North London lease extension today:

Increase your lease and increase your North London property value

There is no doubt about it a leasehold property in North London is a wasting asset as a result of the diminishing lease term. Where the lease has, beyond 99 years remaining then this decrease may be of little impact that being said there will become a point in time when a lease has under than eighty years left as part of the premium you will incur is what is known as a marriage value. This could increase markedly the cost. It is the primary rational as to why you should extend the lease sooner rather than later. The majority of flat owners in North London will qualify for this right; that being said a conveyancing solicitor will be able to confirm whether you are eligible to extend your lease. In limited situations you may not qualify, the most frequent reason being that you have not been the owner of the property for two years.

An extended lease is almost the same value as a freehold

It is generally accepted that a property with in excess of 100 years unexpired lease term is worth roughly the equivalent as a freehold. Where an further ninety years added to all but the shortest lease, the residence will be equivalent in value to a freehold for decades to come.

Lending institutions may decide not to finance a property on a short lease

Almost all banks and building societies insist on a lengthy amount of time left on any leasehold residence before they will contemplate it as adequate security. Even if you don't require a mortgage, you should bear in mind that it is probable that someone wishing to purchase your property in the future might well do, so in the event that they can't secure a mortgage, then the market price of your property could suffer. Since 2008 many banks and building societies have increased the required minimum lease length that they are prepared to accept

Lender Requirement
Accord Mortgages 85 years from the date of completion of the mortgage. Please ensure that you explain the implications of a short term lease to the borrower.
Barnsley Building Society 60 years from the date of the mortgage application subject to 35 years remaining at the end of the mortgage term.
Godiva Mortgages A minimum of 70 years unexpired lease at completion for all scheme types apart from Lifetime Mortgages (Equity Release), which require a minimum unexpired term of 80 years at completion.
Nationwide Building Society - Our minimum unexpired lease term is 55 years, except where lending is over 85% of the purchase price/valuation on a second hand flat, in which case our minimum unexpired term is 90 years.
- There must be at least 30 years remaining at the end of the mortgage term (regardless of the length of lease at the start).

Where the unexpired lease term is different to that recorded on the mortgage offer, the following clarifies if we need to be informed:

Second hand property:
- If the unexpired lease term on the offer is 85 years or more - only advise us if the actual lease term is less than 85 years
- if the unexpired lease term on the offer is less than 85 years – advise us if the actual lease term is different than reported
- For equity share applications - advise us if the actual lease term is different than reported on the offer
- Where lending is over 85% of the purchase price/valuation on a second hand flat and the unexpired lease term on the offer is 90 years or more - only advise us if the actual lease term is less than 90 years.

New build property:
- If the unexpired lease term stated on the offer is 125 years (flat) / 250 years (house) or more - only advise us if the actual lease term is less than 125 years (flat) / 250 years (house)
- For equity share applications - always advise us if the actual lease term is different than reported on the offer

Lease terms such as ground rent and event fees must be reasonable at all times during the term of the lease and adhere to our requirements below. If you’re unsure as to whether the terms of a lease are unreasonable or onerous, please refer the details to us in plain English for Valuer consideration. If the potentially onerous terms are in relation to the ground rent please include the current ground rent figure per annum, how often it will be reviewed and the price structure it will be reviewed against. See the guidance below.

SECOND HAND PROPERTIES

Unacceptable - advise Issuing Office (Will be declined):
- Unexpired lease term less than 55 years
- Unexpired lease term less than 90 years where we are lending more than 85% of the purchase price/valuation on a second hand flat
- Less than 30 years remaining at the end of the mortgage term
- Ground Rent greater than 0.5% of the property value
- Ground Rent doubles less than every 20 years (e.g. doubles every 5, 10 or 15 years) - acceptable if doubles every 20 years or more
- Ground Rent is compounded RPI
- Ground Rent review period is less than or equal to 5 years

Refer to Issuing Office (Valuer will consider any impact on valuation figure and marketability):
- Unexpired lease term is 55 to 85 years
- Ground Rent greater than 0.1% and less than or equal to 0.5% of the property value
- Ground Rent escalation is linked to any indices greater than RPI
- Ground Rent escalation is linked to the value of the building*
- Ground Rent review period is greater than 5 and less than 10 years
- Event clauses exist for normal use e.g. changing the carpet, installing a TV aerial, etc
- Estate Rent Charges greater than £500 p/a (please provide details of what the charges cover)
- Service Charges greater than 1% of property value p/a (please provide details of what the charges cover)
- Anything that appears onerous, unusual or out of the ordinary

Acceptable (no requirement to advise Issuing Office):
- Unexpired lease term greater than 85 years (Minimum 90 years where we are lending more than 85% of the purchase price/valuation on a second hand flat)
- Ground Rent less than or equal to 0.1% of the property value
- Ground Rent review period greater than or equal to 10 years
- Ground Rent escalation less than or equal to RPI

NEW BUILD PROPERTIES (includes office conversions)

Unacceptable - advise Issuing Office (Will be declined)
- Unexpired lease term less than 125 years on a new build flat or less than 250 years on a new build house (does not apply to Shared Ownership)
- Any lease which is subject to a Ground Rent (or Annual Rent) being charged which is more than on a peppercorn basis
- Any lease which is subject to a Ground Rent (or Annual Rent) being charged which is more than on a peppercorn basis

Refer to Issuing Office (Valuer will consider any impact on valuation figure and marketability):
- Event clauses exist for normal use e.g. changing the carpet, installing a TV aerial etc
- Estate Rent Charges greater than £500 p/a (please provide details of what the charges cover)
- Service Charges greater than 1% of property value p/a (please provide details of what the charges cover)
- Anything else appears onerous, unusual or out of the ordinary

Acceptable (no requirement to advise Issuing Office):
- Unexpired lease term greater than or equal to 125 years on a new build flat or greater than or equal to 250 years on a new build house
- A lease subject to a peppercorn Ground Rent (Annual Rent) charges

For the avoidance of doubt, any New Build properties completed but not sold pre-30 June 2022 will only be acceptable if the Lease conforms to the above guidance.

* Where the Ground Rent escalation is linked to the value of the building, please provide the following:
- How is the value of the block/unit currently calculated and if the assessment relates to the block(s), how is the Ground Rent calculated/apportioned per property?
- The current valuation and Ground Rent for each unit
- What is the mechanism for future valuations of the block and how is the Ground Rent calculated/apportioned?
- What is the right of appeal? And is this a documented process within the lease?
- Who bears the cost of the valuation (and appeal) process?
- Confirmation the review period is not less than twenty years.

Lease Extensions

We require all Lease Extensions to be completed under the Leasehold Reform Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 and to meet the above criteria as a minimum. Where you become aware that it does not meet these requirements, please refer to Issuing Office.
Skipton Building Society 85 years from the date of completion of the mortgage

For Buy to Let cases:
- lettings must not breach any of the lessee’s covenants; and
- consent of the lessor to lettings must be obtained if necessary

Why use us for your lease extension in North London?

Engaging our service gives you better control over the value of your North London leasehold, as your property will be more valuable and saleable in respect of lease length should you decide to sell. The conveyancing solicitors that we work with are well versed in the legislation handling many hundreds of lease extensions or freehold purchase transactions.

North London Lease Extension Example Cases:

Aiden, North London, London

In 2014 Aiden, came very near to the eighty-year mark with the lease on his purpose- built apartment in North London. Having bought his property 18 years ago, the unexpired term was of minimal concern. Thankfully, he became aware that he needed to take steps soon on Extending the lease. Aiden arranged for a lease extension just under the wire in June. Aiden and the landlord in the end agreed on a premium of £5,000 . If he failed to meet the deadline, the amount would have gone up by a minimum £875.

North London case:

Last month we were approach by Mr and Mrs. E Garcia , who moved into a purpose-built apartment in North London in June 2011. We are asked if we could estimate the compensation to the landlord would be to extend the lease by an additional years. Similar residencies in North London with a long lease were in the region of £171,800. The average amount of ground rent was £55 collected per annum. The lease elapsed in 2074. Having 50 years left we estimated the compensation to the freeholder to extend the lease to be within £33,300 and £38,400 exclusive of costs.

Decision in Hounslow

An example of a Freehold Enfranchisement decision for a North London residence is 20 Avonwick Road in July 2013. The Tribunal was dealing with an application under Section 26 of the Leasehold Reform Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 for a determination of the freehold value of the property. It was concluded that the price to be paid was Fifteen Thousand Nine Hundred and Seventy (£15,970) divided as to £8,200 for Flat 20 and £7,770 for Flat 20A This case related to 1 flat. The unexpired term as at the valuation date was 73.26 years.