First Refusal offer.

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  • First Refusal offer.

    Hello any advice on this matter would be greatlyappreciated.

    We have recently received a notice pursuant to Section 5 of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1987.

    As we understand it is an offer under the "First Refusal" laws.

    The current owners purchased our building last yr.

    One of the conditions as we understand for their purchase was to buy the building with the AST's flats vacant, which the old owner did.

    This in turn left just rent act tenants and us an assured tennant in the building.

    Since buying the building the new owners have left the AST's flats vacant, with of course just leaves us and the remaining rent act tenants.

    Now the Owners have decided to sell, and because only rent act tennants remain we assume that is why they consider we have the right under the above act first mentioned for first refusal.

    We have only recently found out that infact we are rent Act tenants and not assured tenants.
    We have also been informed that we in fact should have therefore been given the right to buy under "first refusal" as way back as 1995 .

    We have been informed that buy us being rent act tenants that that would have made more than 50% of the residents rent act tenants.

    MY QUESTION IS :

    Is this first refusal offer unlawful ???
    And if so what steps do we take??? Injunction perhaps ??? or some other avenue???

    l know what some of you will say, and believe me l am not saying its wrong advice. "Get legal advice"
    Our current solicitor barely new what "First Refusal" meant when we went to see him, and at the moment he says he really does not know what step to take next.
    Our funding certificate has recently expired so he tell us at the moment he cannot get any advice from counsel on this matter of which he says he would like.
    We re applied for funding but it was turned down because of some calculations error.
    There is not much time left as the 2 month period for us to reply to the first refusal offer will expire soon.

    Any advice from you guys/gals as always very welcome.

    Cheers

    Charlie

  • #2
    If you think you want to buy you should research and hire a new solicitor who is conversant with this area of the law.

    If you don't want to buy then don't.

    Comment


    • #3
      Agree with Poppy...this is a fairly specialist area. IF you are interested in buying then hire a SPECIALIST solicitor in this area. If you are not interested, then why worry? You will not get much in the way of useful information from this site on this matter I'm afraid.
      Any posts by myself are my opinion ONLY. They should never be taken as correct or factual without confirmation from a legal professional. All information is given without prejudice or liability.

      Comment


      • #4
        thanks for reply.

        trust me we have been trying. Its has not been that easy getting advice on this subject.
        While our funding cokup is hopefully gonna be sorted out soon we are still worried that 2 month period will run ref "first refusal offer".

        We have no intention of buying the property as offered currently.
        we're talking a couple of million here.

        But if we were rent act tenants when the building was sold in 95 and at that time over 50% of the residents would of therefore also been , then surely there was a breach of first refusal then.

        sorry l'm not making things very clear here.

        we think the building was sold for 1 million back in 95, and now the new owners have it on offer at 2 and a half million.

        l think that is why it may matter a bit on weither the sale goes through or not.

        In theory could we buy the building at 95 price and then sell it at todays price if it is proved our rights to buy in 95 were broken ?????????

        if there was a breach in 95 which by us being recorgnised as rent act tenants now. we think sure does. Then how does that effect this new offer???

        l mentioned to our solicitor about a possible injunction we could take out to stop this current offer, { this idea from member here } and he just says he does not know what to do next unless he gets funding to speak to counsel.

        Cheers

        Charles

        Comment


        • #5
          First of all, as I have said you will not get anything close to accurate advice on here so theres no point in asking follow up questions! But, I would be amazed if, even if a breach is shown(which I think you may have a certain time to do so, which I suspect will have well expired), you would be able to "buy" the property for the 95 price...the law simply won't work that way. In my opinion, it is that far gone, and seeing as though you are not interested in buying the property anyway, you are better off just leaving it. Although I am far from an expert, or even a novice, in this area, fromn my limited knowledge I cannot see you having a case worth the hassle of fighting.
          Any posts by myself are my opinion ONLY. They should never be taken as correct or factual without confirmation from a legal professional. All information is given without prejudice or liability.

          Comment


          • #6
            thanks for reply.

            l was told recently that if a breach of our right to first refusal had been/ can be shown to have been broken in 95 by the then Landlords, that it is a criminal offence that had been comitted by them.

            And based on that the new owners would in fact not own the building, meaning they would have to give up ownership, and that we would automatically have the right to buy the property under statute law at the 1995 price.

            l am still not sure how this would effect this "First Refusal" offer put to us now, but our solicitor does just keep saying he won't do anything regardless of going past the 2 month time to reply to the current landlords First refusal offer until he has the funding to get advice from counsel.

            l think by doing nothing it will at best complicate and delay any action we can take in future.

            any advice welcome

            charles

            Comment


            • #7
              I must apologise...it would seem that you may be correct. The new owner may be forced to sell the property at the price he paid. Did the new landlord ever serve you with a Section 3 notice(telling you the new name and address etc) after acquiring the property? Have you discussed this matter with the other rent act tenants in the building?

              A link which may be useful:

              http://www.lease-advice.org/rfrmain.htm

              However, as bad news, you only have 6 months to do this. You are clearly well well out of this time period. Your only recourse now may be if the new landlord failed to serve a S3 notice.

              *EDIT* but, as the property was a RFA(right to first refusal) property, you also needed to receive a S3A notice, which as they were not aware it was an RFA property, you probably have not received. You really do need to retain the services of a specialist solicitor for this. Although the typical method of notification of the transfer is an S3A notice(and you have 6 months from the date of notification to apply), a court will clearly see that you were fully aware of the transfer, whether it was served as a notice or not. It is a complex situation indeed!
              Any posts by myself are my opinion ONLY. They should never be taken as correct or factual without confirmation from a legal professional. All information is given without prejudice or liability.

              Comment


              • #8
                I don't understand. You (and your tenant buddies) want to buy a property for £1million but you do not have the money to finance the buying process. Is that what you're saying?

                Comment


                • #9
                  l can't begin to explain how many twists and turns over the yrs here.

                  the current owners never served any R3 notices or anything on us or the other tenants when they bought the building last yr.

                  This may interest you:
                  we were in dispute over dis repairs and ourselves claiming we were infact rent act tenants and not assured with the previous landlord befor he sold the building to current owners.

                  Now the current owners say that they were not aware of any dispute between us and the previous landlords.

                  l read what you just posted and thanks alot, but what about this "buyers beware" saying ???????
                  weither they knew or not we were rent act tenents or not l thought didnt matter.
                  The fact is we only became aware recently that we are rent act tenants.

                  does'nt same apply to 95 sale and owners then ????? surely its upto them to be fully aware of the tenancy status of the teneants when buying and selling a building.

                  from what you have typed, do you really think they have an arguement for saying we were unaware as they themself the tenants were at the time to what type of tenancy they actuallt had ????

                  charles

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Poppy,

                    We think we may have the right to buy our building from sale in 1995.{sold 1 million}

                    we are being offered now under first refusal at 2 and a half million.

                    now if there was a breach of first refusal in 95 l think that the current owners may not infact own the property and that they would have to go back sueing previous owners over that matter.

                    l think we might be able to buy building today at 1995 price and then of course sell it tomorrow at huge profit.
                    of course if this is all right we would get companies knocking down our door to loan us the money, as huge amount to be made by all.

                    But by what Mr Shed has just posted l am now not sure, as he mentions time periods and stuff, which all worries me.

                    thanks Charles

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Mr Shed,

                      that 6 month time period you mention, does that have an relevence to our matter ????
                      l'm thinking not as a few people have mentioned us being able to legally purchase our biulding at 95 price.
                      And of course this ie way beyond 6 months ago.
                      Not sure about any of this at all.
                      And last couple of solcictors we have had can barely remember our names let alone any details from past acts that may be relevent.

                      l know you right saying get specialist help, but not as easy as said sometimes.
                      None of the people we have talked to "Specialists" do legal aid.

                      But this solicitor we are using at mo has gone into it a bit, he says "its so bloody complicated" that he really does not know where to begin without advice from counsel.

                      just fingers crossed so much now that we will get our legal aid certificate back again after this blunder with the legal services commision.

                      charles

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        If you read that link I posted it states the 6 month time period, which definitely DOES apply to your matter.

                        The question is whether it does not apply because you have not received an S3A notice. This is something only a court will be able to decide I'm afraid.
                        Any posts by myself are my opinion ONLY. They should never be taken as correct or factual without confirmation from a legal professional. All information is given without prejudice or liability.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by charles10 View Post
                          of course if this is all right we would get companies knocking down our door to loan us the money, as huge amount to be made by all.


                          And I am not so sure where you get this idea from....companies are not all of a sudden going to break their lending rules based upon a vague promise from you of selling the property after purchasing. Your best bet would be a private investor, but this is going to cost you a good chunk of your profit for him/her to put the money in, if you can even find one.

                          From what I have read, my conclusion is that it is certainly worth going for, IF you can find someone IN ADVANCE who is willing to put the money up. If you cannot find anyone willing to put the money up then there is little point in wasting time and money pursuing legal battles. You probably wont win, in my opinion, but only a court would probably be able to give you a definitive answer.
                          Any posts by myself are my opinion ONLY. They should never be taken as correct or factual without confirmation from a legal professional. All information is given without prejudice or liability.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            There was no S3A notice ever served on sale of building in 95 or subsequent sales right upto this first refusal offer now by new owners.

                            l think l get what your saying.
                            do you mean that even if it is proven that a breach of the first refusal act was broken in 95 that we might not gain anything out of all this ???

                            very interesting what you said about getting loan should we ever have the right to buy our building at 95 price.

                            thanks

                            charles

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              That is what I am saying. Basically, the standard method of notification of transfer of the property, in this situation, is a S3A. So, you have 6 months from the issue of the S3A to complain about the lack of first refusal. So on this criteria, you have never received it, and so can still complain. However, in my opinion there is a fairly good chance that the court will take it as being 6 months from the date you knew about the transfer, and there is no doubt that you did know about the transfer, with or without the S3A. You with me? It depends on what the court thinks.

                              With the loan thing, imagine myself for example seeing a business for sale for 1 million. I can see that the business is massively underperforming, and could make it double its profits in a matter of weeks/months, making the business value at least double. Still no bank in a million years is going to lend me 1 mil! You get my point? HOWEVER, I may be able to persuade a rich friend to lend me 1 mil. Irrespective of the potential returns, if you would not have qualified for a 1 million pound loan anyway, no loan company or bank will lend you the money. That is not to say that you cannot get the money.
                              Any posts by myself are my opinion ONLY. They should never be taken as correct or factual without confirmation from a legal professional. All information is given without prejudice or liability.

                              Comment

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