The collective right to enfranchise

The following Property practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • The collective right to enfranchise
  • Common parts
  • Qualifying building
  • Excluded buildings
  • Qualifying tenants
  • Excluded leases
  • Number of qualifying tenants required
  • The nominee purchaser
  • Possible amendments to LRHUDA 1993
  • Miscellaneous

The collective right to enfranchise

Subject to various qualifying criteria, tenants who hold long leases of flats have a collective right under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 (LRHUDA 1993), s 1 buy the freehold (and any intermediate leasehold interests) of the building containing those flats together with any common areas (eg gardens, car parks etc). Given the increase of flats within development schemes, particularly in mixed-use developments, this represents a valuable right for such tenants.

If the building contains any non-residential elements, the freeholder has a right to a leaseback of them for a term of 999 years.

LRHUDA 1993 provides that the tenants must acquire any intermediate leasehold interests and that they are entitled to acquire the leasehold interest in any common parts reasonably necessary for the proper management or maintenance of the common parts or the property being acquired.

Common parts

In Earl Cadogan v Panagopoulos the Court of Appeal held that a caretaker’s flat was within the common parts of the relevant premises. Common parts are defined in the legislation as including common parts and common facilities. The flat had been identified as a distinct part of the building with a distinct function since at least 1966. It was referred to as such in two of the five current leases which also gave the tenants’ rights to the services of a

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