Our solicitor says don’t buy it – Step away?

Our solicitor says don’t buy it – Step away?

16:12 PM, 16th March 2022, About 2 years ago 12

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Hi, my partner and I are trying to buy a whole house that has a self-contained basement flat included. We have found out this basement flat has a mortgage on it in the name of the seller’s business. (No tenants)

The lease on the house above is owned by him and his wife, and the Freehold is also in the name of his business. So all within the ‘same’ family so to speak.

Our solicitor says don’t buy it, step away! But surely there’s a way to do this.

We would like to port the mortgage deal we have, but it is possible that we could be cash buyers if the mortgage lenders won’t port our current deal for any reason.

Can we buy it all and then merge the leases to make a single whole freehold?

Do we need to set up a Ltd company and use that to ‘own’ the freehold while we have both leases in our joint names?

Not sure why our solicitor is saying they can’t proceed. They are worried the land registry may not merge after we buy.

Any advice would be appreciated 🙂


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7:55 AM, 19th March 2022, About 2 years ago

As others have said, you need a detailed explanation as to why your solicitor says walk away.

I can’t see any problem as long as you are buying the two leases and the freehold and complete at the same time? Unless there is a defect in any of the leases that your solicitor has found?

You may have issues with the mortgage on this current arrangement (you can’t be both the leaseholder and freeholder, and some lenders don’t like related companies or persons being the freeholder and lending on the leasehold).
Your safest bet is buying for cash. Then sorting out the titles to be a single freehold on the whole property. Then get a mortgage (most lenders won’t lend until 6 months has passed - but as the freehold already existed this may not be an issue).

rosalind Chukwudum

11:42 AM, 19th March 2022, About 2 years ago

We just completed yesterday on a house that was split into 2 leasehold flats and 1 freehold. We bought all three titles. As it was a previous owner who made the titles like this we were able to own all three in 1 name - our company .[if we were the ones to split the titles our solicitor said we would then have had to hold freehold or leasehold in a different name] The advantage I can see is that if/when we can choose to sell one of the flats in the future it will be easier as it already has a leasehold title at the start of its 999yrs.

Did it take more time than buying an average residential? No
Did it cost more on conveyancing? Yes £2500 as opposed to approx £1700
Did it cost more on stamp duty? No £3000 less.
Are we pleased with the deal? Yes

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