A recent Court of Appeal case has considered the definition of a “house” under Section 2 of the Leasehold Reform Act 1967.

The Act allows a qualifying tenant of a house to buy the freehold or take a new lease for an additional 50 years.

In Grosvenor (Mayfair) Estate v Merix International Ventures Ltd and another, the tenant claimed that it was entitled to buy the freehold of a property from the freeholder under the Act.  Between 1968 and 2000 the property had been used at times partially for office purposes, with residential accommodation on upper floors.  From 2000 onwards it was unoccupied.  The freeholder resisted the claim on the basis that the property was not a house.  The Judge at First Instance had found in favour of the tenant and the freeholder appealed.

The Court of Appeal considered whether an unoccupied property that had been used at times both as offices and residential accommodation was a “house” under Section 2 of the Act.

The Court of Appeal dismissed the freeholder’s appeal and confirmed that buildings are “infinitely variable in character and function” and they refused to interfere with the Judge’s decision.

At Myerson we can advise on the approach and the process involved in both the purchase of the freehold and a lease extension.  We can also advise as to the likely costs involved in terms of both the premium and the fees which will be charged by the freeholder and their surveyors or valuers.

The service we provide at Myerson is a prestige, bespoke service, tailored to each client’s specific requirements, which are kept firmly at the forefront of our minds throughout the Conveyancing process.  If you require advice on any residential matter then please get in touch with one of our specialist residential property solicitors, in our Conveyancing Department.

Whilst our office is easily accessible for people in the localities of Manchester and Cheshire, including Altrincham, Hale, Bowdon, Sale, Timperley, Knutsford, Wilmslow, Alderley Edge and Prestbury we also act for clients throughout England and Wales.

Myerson is also an accredited member of The Law Society Conveyancing Quality Scheme – the mark of excellence in the residential conveyancing process.

If you would like to contact our expert residential property solicitors here at Myerson, please call us on 0161 941 4000 or alternatively email us at lawyers@myerson.co.uk.

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