Extending your lease 

As the leaseholder you have the right to have the landlord grant a new lease for the term of 90 years in addition to the remaining term of your lease. The advantage of extending your lease is that the current ground rent which you will be reduced to a nominal fee, often known as a peppercorn rent.

If you are looking to sell your flat one of the most frequent questions asked by potential buyers is, "how long is you lease?" A longer lease is much more attractive to potential buyers.

How much will it cost to extend my lease?

We advise that if you are considering extending your lease that you seek specialist professional and legal advice.

The value of extending your lease is based on the following factors:

  • The value of the landlord's interest - That is the difference between the value of the interest now with the present lease and the value of the landlord's interest after the grant of the new lease.

  • 50% of the Marriage Value - The potential increase in the value of the flat because the lease has been extended. However the marriage value is only payable if a lease has less than 80 years remaining.

  • Any compensation to the landlord for any other loss arising to the building from the lease extension

  • The landlord's reasonable costs of dealing with extending the lease.

What are the criteria for extending the lease?

  • You must have owned your flat for the last 2 years

  • Have a lease more than 21 years in length

  • If a leaseholder dies, the personal representatives who inherit the property have the right to apply also and have 2 years from the date of the grant of probate to exercise their right to an extension

  • If the majority of the leaseholders in the block of flats have applied to purchase  the freehold then a lease extension is not possible during this process.

Procedures for extending the lease

  • The leaseholder has the right to obtain information from the landlord.

  • The leaseholder obtains a valuation and serves notice on the landlord

  • The landlord has two months to reply and can:

  1. Accept the price offered by the leaseholder

  2. Accept the leaseholder's right but propose another price or,

  3. Explain why the leaseholder cannot extend the lease

  • If there are negotiations on the price a period of 2 months is allowed

  • After the 2 months either party can apply to the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal (LVT) to determine the price or any other issue.

We will only be able to provide information once a formal application has been made under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Act 1993.

LEASE - The Leasehold Advisory Service, an independent public body funded by Government provide free legal advice to leaseholders, landlords, and other on the law affecting residential leasehold and commonhold in England and Wales have a guide on extending the lease. Please go to their Lease Extension Guide for further details.

Please contact the Leasehold Officer on 01727 819578 or email leasehold@stalbans.gov.uk if you would like to extend the lease.

Date of last review: 17 June 2013