A claim for a lease extension under the provisions of the Leasehold Reform Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 relates to a flat held on a long lease. However, under the 1993 Act, the definition of a “flat” also includes any garage, outhouse, garden, yard and appurtenances belonging to or usually enjoyed with the flat and which are let to the leaseholder with the flat when the claim is made (commonly known by practitioners as “Appurtenant Property”).
“Appurtenances” is property which belongs to or usually enjoyed with the flat and be contained within the premises of which the flat forms part or be within the curtilage of those premises.
In the majority of cases any such additional property is referred to in the lease of the flat itself but this is not always the case. Sometimes, such property is held on a separate lease and/or on a separate title. It is not, therefore, always immediately obvious to practitioners whether there is any property in addition to the flat which should be included in the claim. If there is any such property, it is important to consider whether it should be included as there is no statutory right to claim a lease extension of such property on its own. If the claim does not include any such additional property the lease extension will not include the same and an opportunity will have been missed.
For such property to be included in the claim it must “let to the tenant with the flat”. This test is satisfied either because the property is:
a) demised to the tenant under the same lease as the flat or
b) is demised under a separate lease but which section 7(6) of the 1993 Act treats as a single lease with the lease of the flat.
Section 7(6) provides that where there are two or more leases they are treated as a single lease where, the landlord and tenant are the same persons under both leases, and the property demised by one of those leases consist of the flat or a part or it or appurtenant property only, and the property comprised in every other lease consists of either a part of the flat or appurtenant property only.
Time and care should be taken by practitioners and those leaseholders instructing solicitors to ensure the extent of the property which is to be the subject of a claim is correct.
The award winning Leasehold Enfranchisement team at Hart Brown have the experience and specialist knowledge to assist leaseholders who find themselves in such a situation.
Partner and Head of Leasehold Enfranchisement
Hart Brown Solicitors