Reform for Leaseholders

Published: 04/06/2024 By Allan Fuller

Reform for Leaseholders, but not for Landlords and Tenants - ...Yet. 

The sudden election decision meant that new legislation that had been progressing, often at a snail’s pace either suddenly raced to the finishing line or was consigned to history. 

Leasehold reform was the winner, reform for tenants and landlords was consigned to the bonfire of lost legislation awaiting the Phoenix to bring it back to life when we have a new government.

This new law aims to make it easier and cheaper for leaseholders to buy their freehold or increase the standard lease extension term to 990 years.

Some leaseholders could not take over management of their building or buy the freehold if more than 25% of its floor space is commercial, such as shops being on the ground floor of their building. The limit has been doubled to 50% so, many more homeowners can get the Right to Manage their building or get together and acquire the freehold. 

Other changes will make it cheaper and easier to extend leases:
  • Extension of a lease to a term of 990 years for houses and flats can be obtained, giving homeowners a vast increase in security. 
  • Banning the sale of new leasehold houses so that, other than in exceptional circumstances, every new house in England and Wales will be freehold from the outset.
  • Removing the requirement for a new leaseholder to have owned their house or flat for 2 years before they can extend their lease or buy their freehold (although there is some uncertainty as to when this will apply).