Information for Seller’s of Leasehold Properties

With around 45% of legal firms deciding not to act on the purchase or sale of leasehold properties falling within the new Building Safety Act 2022, which came into force on 1 April 2023, Farnfields can deal with this for you if the property you are selling or buying falls within that Act.

Here at Farnfields we have a specialist dedicated team dealing with properties which are affected by the Building Safety Act 2022 and who will be on hand and ready to advise you every step of the way through the buying and/or selling process.  If you are thinking of selling or buying such a property please contact a member of our New Business Team who will be happy to answer any initial enquiries.

 Building Safety (leaseholder protections) (England) Regulations 2022

These regulations were introduced earlier in 2022 to provide more rights, powers and protection to owners of properties which are contained in “high rise” buildings.  In particular they cover most leasehold properties and offers protection against the cost of any remedial works which are due to the building i.e., cladding, to minimise the fire risk as a whole.  However, there are certain criteria which must be met for leaseholders to be protected by the Regulations.

  • The property must be at least 5 storeys or 11 metres in height
  • The freehold of the building is not owned by the leaseholders
  • The building must contain at least 2 residential dwellings
  • The leaseholder must have a “Qualifying Lease” (a lease which was in existence on or before 14 February 2022)
  • Your property was your main home, or
  • You owned no more than 3 UK residential properties in total

You are also a qualifying leaseholder if you have bought your property since 14 February 2022, but either of the last two points above was true for the flat on that date and the lease was in existence before 14 February 2022.

As part of the selling process, you will need to provide a Leaseholder’s Certificate in a prescribed form.  We can provide you with the appropriate form and assist you in completing this if you are unsure as to what information is required.  This completed form, will then be sent to the Managing Agents/Landlord for them to provide the relevant Landlord’s Certificate.  Both certificates will be required by the Buyer’s solicitor.  If the Landlord fails to provide the certificate within four weeks of the Leaseholder’s certificate being sent to them, then the costs of any required remedial works cannot be passed on to your buyer and the Landlord must bear the costs themselves.

More information is available on the government website

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/building-safety-leaseholder-protections-guidance-for-leasesholders

and

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/mandatory-information-required-from-leasholders-and-building-owners

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/leaseholder-protections-deed-of-certificate-frequently-asked-questions

If your buyer is purchasing your property with the assistance of a mortgage, they will be required to satisfy their lender’s requirements to take into account the recent changes effected by the Building Safety Act 2022 to include, but not limited to, providing the leaseholder’s and landlord’s certificates.

 

 

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