Variation of Lease

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    Variation of Lease

    own two apartments in a block of six. The ownership structure was recently changed from 6 x Freehold apartments to 6 x Leasehold apartments and the Freehold owned by a Management company, a single share of which is owned by each of the Tenanted apartments and the directors of which are the tenants of the apartments.
    One of the apartments has recently changed hands.
    The new owner wishes to make alterations.
    Some are non-structural, some are structural.
    The Lease states categorically that structural changes are not allowed. There is no leeway for any amendment to this condition.
    It has been proposed that the Lease is amended by Deed of Variation to allow structural changes.
    My question is this; Does there have to be a separate Deed of Variation for each apartment, signed by the Tenant of each apartment, and all six Tenants doing so for such a Variation to become effective? What if 4 of the 6 Tenants in the building sign a Variation but 2 of the 6 do not. Does majority rule apply? And can the new owner then legitimately go ahead with the structural changes?

    #2
    Six freehold apartments sounds seriously broken.

    Does the lease say that the lessor will enforce that covenant against other leaseholders? If not, there is no need to alter the lease. Just issue a licence to alter.

    (Of course, many alterations will require other alternations to the lease to make the change fair to other leaseholders.

    If there is a requirement to enforce the covenant, you will need to change all the leases.

    A variation will require permission from lenders.

    Comment


      #3
      You state,
      "The Lease states categorically that structural changes are not allowed. There is no leeway for any amendment to this condition."
      Therefore you Have to enforce the lease and say that permission is not granted, as it is against the lease covenants.

      Job done, case closed

      The New resident knew Full well that structural changes are not allowed.( There is a valid reason why structural changes are not allowed.)
      Tell me that it is the new resident that wants to change the rules to suit themselves ?

      Comment


        #4
        If any of the leaseholders do not voluntarily agree to a lease variation you would need to get the proposed variation agreed by a court or tribunal (and the grounds you mention do not sound like something that would allow a tribunal/court to vary a lease).

        On the limited information we have, I would agree with RAM, in that it doesn't seem possible to vary the lease and it needs to be enforced (although whether the proposed changes are actually completely prohibited depends on the precise wording of the leases).

        Comment


          #5
          Thanks for the responses. As a Tenant, I do not want the proposed structural changes to go ahead. The precise wording is as follows; Alterations

          1.1 Not to make any external or structural alteration or addition to the Property or make any opening in any boundary of the Property or cut or maim any structural parts of the Building.

          1.2 Not to make any internal, non-structural alteration or addition to the Property, or alteration to the plan, design or elevation of the Property, without the prior written consent of the Landlord, such consent not to be unreasonably withheld or delayed.

          Does that help?

          Comment


            #6
            Yes, this changes things.

            1.2 Not to make any internal, non-structural alteration or addition to the Property, or alteration to the plan, design or elevation of the Property, without the prior written consent of the Landlord, such consent not to be unreasonably withheld or delayed.

            You can make internal alterations with landlord consent, in writing, but No structural alterations.

            It is up to the Directors to enforce the lease, - but not to alter the lease.

            Your lease has to be "defective" to have a legal change to it.
            Your leases are not "defective"., therefore the is no valid reason whatsoever to even attempt to change the lease to allow structural changes.

            There is no point in having a legally draw up lease that protects the fabric of the building; protects the residents in the building from structural alterations that may eventually put the building at risk of irreparable damage that only rears its head many, many years after the alterations, just to be changed on a whim.

            If the other Directors wish to agree to breaching the lease on this very important matter ( structural ), then they are not worthy of being a Director.

            You didn't answer the question
            "it is the new resident that wants to change the rules and do these alterations" ?

            .


            Comment


              #7
              The new buyer may not be a new resident.

              The new buyer may be a "property refurbisher " to convert kitchen into second bedroom and convert lounge into lounge with open kitchen and then sell on to take profit.

              Comment


                #8
                The opening post states:
                "One of the apartments has recently changed hands.
                The new owner wishes to make alterations.
                Some are non-structural, some are structural."


                So we already know that it is the new owner who wants to make the alterations.

                This is irrelevant though, because it doesn't matter which leaseholder wants the alterations, the structural alterations are still not allowed by the lease.
                The non structural alterations need to be allowed unless there are justifiable reasons why they should not go ahead.

                Comment


                  #9
                  O.K., so I forgot The new owner wishes to make alterations. But I wished to state as post number 7 ( Gordon 999 ).

                  We have had 2 developers here, and one of them I refused to give permission on some alterations, or even discus with other shareholders, as it was clear that he was a developer, and he had no respect for the residents, and just being a pain with builders cars everywhere ( which was a breach of the lease ). And no request to alter anything was requested from him

                  The proposed alterations were not for his benefit, therefore that was one of the reasons to refuse, together with his arrogant attitude.
                  He did what he could, then sold within 6 months.
                  Later we ( I ) had to demand the new owner put right some breaches of the lease.

                  The other couple ( 2nd ) had no intention of living there, but just to sublet and refused to comply to the lease regarding common access ( egress to and from ) and totally refusing to be decent regarding access, blocking people in, refusing to tell builders not to park on the driveway and also preventing residents from parking. They would just get in there cars and drive away when confronted.

                  It was clear they would have no regard for the lease, so when they asked to sublet, ( after I found out - and they had not asked permission, and I made them ask for permission ) I refused permission to sublet.
                  ( This Was conveyed to the other leaseholders, due to the fact of "Not to be unreasonably refused" covenant )
                  They had to sell the flat. The sub-tenants that were due to move in sued them for breach of contract.

                  To Sublet "Not to be unreasonably refused" was "reasonably refused" on above grounds.
                  And all done without the aid of solicitors.

                  Yes, I hate developers.

                  Comment

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