How do you get a freehold from an absent landlord?
Obtaining the freehold from an absent landlord can be a complex process, but it is possible under certain circumstances. Here are some potential steps that can be taken:
- Investigate the lease: Review the terms of the lease agreement to determine if there are any provisions or clauses that address the potential acquisition of the freehold. Look for any rights or options granted to leaseholders to collectively purchase the freehold or exercise the Right to Manage.
- Right to Manage (RTM): The Right to Manage is a legal process that allows leaseholders to take over the management responsibilities of the property, even in the absence of the freeholder. Consult with a solicitor experienced in leasehold matters to determine if you and the other leaseholders are eligible to exercise the Right to Manage. If eligible, you can form a Right to Manage company and follow the statutory procedures to acquire the management rights.
- Enfranchisement: Enfranchisement refers to the process of leaseholders collectively purchasing the freehold of the property. This can be done under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 in England and Wales, or under other applicable legislation in different regions. Seek legal advice to determine if you meet the qualifying criteria for enfranchisement and to guide you through the process.
- Absentee landlord procedures: In some cases, there may be specific legal procedures or remedies available to address the issue of an absent landlord. Local laws and regulations can provide guidance on how to proceed in such circumstances. Consult with a solicitor or property law specialist to understand the options available to you based on your jurisdiction.
- Compulsory purchase: In rare cases, if the landlord is completely untraceable or unresponsive, it may be possible to pursue a compulsory purchase of the freehold. This typically involves legal proceedings and can be a complex and lengthy process. Consult with legal professionals experienced in property law to assess the viability and potential steps for a compulsory purchase.
It is essential to seek legal advice from solicitors or property law specialists experienced in leasehold matters to guide you through the specific legal procedures and requirements applicable to your situation. They can provide tailored advice and assistance based on the relevant laws in your jurisdiction.