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Why selling a freehold house subject to a lease of part is bad news


When the owner decides to sell the retained flat, it will normally be marketed as if just the flat was for sale. Agents often assume that the property is leasehold, and the fact that there is no lease for the seller’s flat is only discovered when his Conveyancing Solicitors get a copy of the land registry title.

The buyers may well then think they are looking at a freehold flat – although it is not strictly true – and perhaps be put off buying. Legally speaking there is no problem with the situation – if the buyers bought the freehold of the whole house they would only be entitled to occupy the part of the property which is not subject to the lease.

However many mortgage lenders either do not understand this arrangement or do not accept it. It can therefore be difficult for buyers to get a mortgage unless there are leases of both flats. The seller must create a new lease of the flat he is selling, but that means the necessary document will have to be prepared.

If the seller has already instructed his Conveyancing Solicitor then this can be put in hand straight away before a buyer has been found. Although it is likely that some extra legal fees will be incurred, it will save time and delay when a buyer is found.

This is just one of the potential problems that sellers can face, so if you want fast Conveyancing Fridaysmove recommends all homeowners to instruct Solicitors as soon as possible when selling – it is one of the best ways of ensuring quick Conveyancing when a buyer is found.


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