The owners of the vast majority of flats hold them under a lease – which is quite different from owning a property outright on a freehold basis.
Providing you meet the terms stated in the Leasehold Reform Housing and Urban Development Act 1993, you have a right (along with fellow flat owners in your block) to go about buying the freehold of your block of flats instead. But you may wonder what the landlord thinks of this particular situation and what his response will be to any application by you and your fellow tenants to exercise your freehold right to buy.
In truth they have a limited number of options and they can only block your attempt if they have a valid reason in the eyes of the law to do so. If this is not the case the flat owners can continue with their freehold right to buy under the Act mentioned above.
However this does not mean that they will automatically civil about the matter. If you want to buy your freehold you should be prepared that your landlord may not be happy about the situation. Needless to say they will want to at least secure the best possible price they can for the freehold you are about to purchase.
You can see why lots of people decide to enlist the help of a specialist solicitor to move through the whole process as quickly and easily as possible. There are certain time limits attached to certain parts of the freehold right to buy process and it is incredibly important that these are met. Having the right solicitor on your side will also limit the amount of contact you need to have with your landlord. This is not a bad thing if your freehold right to buy effort has inflamed some bad feeling between the flat owners and the landlord.
It is worth bearing in mind that your case may also end up going through the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal. This unfortunately happens relatively rarely – but if the landlord digs in their heads for the best possible price, the whole issue could end up being decided by the tribunal.
It is understandable that some landlords will object to the situation if it should arise. Instructing a solicitor to act on your behalf definitely makes the situation easier to manage and it also means you know everything will be done just when it should be. You can not influence the attitude of the landlord but you can at least make the process as easy as possible to go through.