New freeholder

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    Dear Sunshinesetter

    Your own suggestion of removing one of your names from the freehold does solve the problems. Even if you don’t do this there is no question of the Land Registry merging the titles for the flat and freehold unless you decide to do this.

    A benefit of removing one of your names from the freehold title is you (i.e. one of you, the freeholder) will then be able to create deeds re the flat e.g. licences to alter; lease extensions.

    If you did decide to set up a company for the freehold be mindful of looking into Right to First Refusal (RFR) as assuming RFR applies to your building/tenants transferring the freehold to a company would trigger RFR. You can however, transfer the freehold to a family member without triggering RFR.

    Before making any changes, best advice is to check with a solicitor.


      Thank you for all your help


        There are no problems with the lease and freehold being in the same names. No action is required. There is no problem with consents because they are not needed. The OP does not need to extend his own lease as he has the freehold.

        The law only says that when a lease is granted landlord and tenant cannot be identical.

        If lease and freehold come into the same hands other than when a tenant surrenders the law presumes against merger - in fact merger is the reverse of surrender. The Land Registry will not cancel a leasehold title if it comes to their notice that the freehold has been acquired by the tenant. You have to make an aplication to cancel the leasehold title.

        In practice if the property is a flat it may be advisable to keep any exisiting leasehold title as it saves problems when you come to sell.


          Thank you lawcruncher you have explained it so well for me and made it easy to understand as I was getting some conflicting answers



            Hi Sunshinesetter

            There are circumstances you might want to be in a position to a) extend the lease and/or b) create licence for alteration even though you own the freehold.

            For example:
            1. If you want to sell the leasehold interest you may wish to sell with extended lease to attract a higher selling price;
            2. If the freehold changed hands the new freeholder is not bound by decisions of the former freeholder (for example related to consents) if these were not crystallized by way of a deed or document worded making it binding on the freeholder’s successors in title.
            Of course the above might not be relevant to your situation.


              The leases are for 999 years from 2006
              Extensions will not be needed for a while.

              All the while landlord and tenant are the same person(s) the question of consent is irrelevant. On a sale whatever comfort the buyer thinks he needs in the way of a deed or other formal document can be given.


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