The Leasehold Reform Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 allows leaseholders of flats to extend their lease by 90 years and reduce the ground rent to zero. This is known more commonly as a statutory lease extension, which is a legal right for leaseholders.
At Homehold, we offer a unique proposition where we handle the lease extension from start to finish for a fixed fee. Our work ranges from the necessary legal checks to valuation work to the complex legal work, carried out by our subsidiary firm of solicitors, LLS.
Whether you own a flat within a local authority purpose-built development like the Arden Estate in Shoreditch or a period conversion flat in areas like Dalston, Stoke Newington or Stamford Hill, we are here to help and make this daunting experience a friendly and stress-free one.
We have worked with private freeholders in Hackney and with Hackney Council to negotiate fair lease extension premiums. We work exclusively for leaseholders and aim to agree the best premium through well thought out negotiations. For example, we are currently working on a case in Somerford Grove, near Stamford Hill which is a flat located in an early 1900s converted industrial building.
There is a wide range of housing stock in Hackney. We have worked on local authority purpose-built maisonettes in Haggerston, to a flat in converted factory in Stamford Hill, to beautiful period conversion flats in Upper Clapton. Our experience allows us to conduct fair and precise negotiations, whether your freeholder is Hackney Council or a private landlord.
Decided to go ahead with your lease extension?
Who can extend their lease in Hackney?
If you own a flat or maisonette in Hackney, then you are more than likely to have the right to extend your lease. If the London Borough of Hackney is your freeholder, this is almost guaranteed.
There are only two noteworthy exceptions that would prevent you from extending your lease:
You cannot extend your lease if you haven’t owned your flat for a minimum of two years (However if you are close to the two-year mark, we can start the valuation work and then press on when you become eligible)
The other exception is if you own the flat part of the “shared ownership” scheme. This is where you don’t own 100% of your flat and you pay rent on the portion you don’t own.
How much does a lease extension cost?
The costs are for a lease extension can vary however ultimately; they are based on three different elements.
- The market value of your flat.
- The years remaining on your current lease.
- The amount of ground rent you pay to your freeholder and if it rises over time.
Typically flats where London Borough of Hackney is the freeholder, have reasonable lease lengths remaining as most local authority flats were let on 125-year leases from the mid 1980s. Commonly Hackney Council ground rents are either £9 or £10. This low ground rent makes extending lease for local authority flat lower than extending leases for flat that has a private freeholder, where the lease years remaining can be much lower and the ground rents are much higher.
For example, we did a lease extension for a client in Rogate House in Lower Clapton. We found the negotiation to more straight forward with Hackney Council, rather a valuer on behalf of a private landlord.
What’s the process?
At Homehold, we look after the whole process of the lease extension on your behalf. This is from instruction to completion, including all the valuation, negotiation, and legal work for a fixed fee. We like to do all the work necessary with our own in-house valuation and legal team, LLS – who will act as your solicitor.
Stage 1: Preparation and Valuation
Before we can kick off the lease extension fully, we need to review all the documents relating to your flat and the building its set in. This is done by Leasehold Legal Services, our own in-house legal firm. This is done early in the process, so there are no delays with your lease extension later on.
Once this has been thoroughly checked, our in-house valuation team will work out the value of your property. They will send you over a detailed valuation report and which similar properties best support the valuation.
Stage 2: Notice Serving and Negotiation
The next stage of the lease extension process is handled by LLS, who will serve notice to your freeholder, which is called a ‘Section 42 Notice’. This document claims your right to extend your lease by 90 years, remove your ground rent and keep the terms of your lease the same. This includes the price of how much you want to pay for it.
Your freeholder has just over two months to come back to us with their Counter Notice and they will most likely come back with a much higher price.
Our valuation team will then work hard to get this figure down to as low as possible which is agreeable to both parties for a fair and reasonable premium.
Stage 3: Conveyancing and Completion.
Once there is agreement, LLS will look at all the details of what has been exactly agreed. The way this works is that Hackney Council will send over an amended lease for LLS to check through. This will be done with great and attention so that the only changes are 90 years have been added, the ground rent has been reduced to zero and no other changes have been made!
Finally, once the lease has been agreed, your solicitors will register your lease extension at the Land Registry.
What do Homehold charge?
We offer an all-in fixed fee of £2,325+VAT. This includes all the necessary work, including any disbursements, to complete your lease extension.
Our fee is broken up into three equal payments of £775+VAT.
Any legal work performed by LLS is all included within our fixed fee - LLS is regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority.
Why use Homehold for your lease extension?
At Homehold, we are passionate in providing a fair and efficient service. We are specialists in our field, and we have substantial experience in dealing with different types of properties across Hackney including areas such as Hackney Wick, Homerton, Hoxton and surrounding areas.
Hear it from another flat owner in Hackney
Terrific team. Step-by-step process, all thoroughly explained. Regular communication throughout the process of lease extension. Responded and clarified any queries I made. Jaime and the whole team made everything absolutely stress-free. I'm very grateful, and would 100% recommend their services.
Tara Scott, Hackney