Retrospective registration?

Retrospective registration?

16:30 PM, 10th July 2022, About a month ago 11

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If you grant a tenancy for +7 years it has to be registered at HM Land Registry.

What will happen, under the new White Paper if it becomes law if tenants stay +7 years?

Does the tenancy then have to be retrospectively registered? Is that even possible?

Something else the drafters have not thought through obviously!

Looks sadly like no political party is remotely with, never mind pro, the PRS!

Judith



Comments

Chris Bradley View Profile

7:08 AM, 11th July 2022, About a month ago

Following

Graham Bowcock View Profile

8:00 AM, 11th July 2022, About a month ago

I think the simple answer is NO, there is no retrospective registration.

It has long been the case that any lease with a fixed term of 7 years or more had to be registered, but no requirement to register leases that may become 7 years by virtue of extension or holding over. I've got plenty that have gone beyond 7 years.

The requirement to register rests with the tenant.

Judith Wordsworth

9:32 AM, 11th July 2022, About a month ago

An interesting article here Leases for more than seven years must be registered with the Land Registry, and it’s usually the tenant’s responsibility to complete that registration. If they fail to do so within two months of completion, it is not a valid legal lease and only takes effect as an agreement for a lease (a contract). The landlord continues to hold the legal estate rather than the tenant until the lease is registered.

If the lease is not registered, it follows that this notice is not given.

The consequence of this is that a landlord may not be able to recover unpaid rent from the guarantor if the tenant fails to pay. In addition, if the landlord sells the property, the lease will not transfer to the purchaser and will remain as a personal contract between the landlord and the tenant.

A landlord may also find it difficult to obtain finance on the strength of a lease that is contractual and not legal.

https://www.hcrlaw.com/blog/tenants-failure-to-register-a-lease-consequences-for-the-landlord/

Graham Bowcock View Profile

14:45 PM, 17th July 2022, About a month ago

It is perhaps worth noting on this thread that leases for more than 3 years have to be done by a solicitor. It is a reserved activity. Therefore one would hope that registration is properly dealt with.

Most seven year leases (fixed term) are more complex than the usual 6/12 month AST. One reason the are granted for residential property is that at seven years the parties can opt out of s11 of the L&T Act - i.e. transfer repairs to the tenant.

If a letting agent (even a qualified chartered surveyor) drafts a lease for more than 3 years then it is invalid (merely an agreement for a lease) and the agent has committed a criminal offence.

David

15:34 PM, 17th July 2022, About a month ago

Reply to the comment left by Graham Bowcock at 17/07/2022 - 14:45
I thought that a 3+ year AST just had to be executed as a deed. I've never heard of it being a reserved activity for solicitors.

TheMaluka View Profile

16:12 PM, 17th July 2022, About a month ago

Reply to the comment left by Graham Bowcock at 17/07/2022 - 14:45
Graham could you please guide me to the statute where this is defined for I have never heard of this requirement?

CMS View Profile

16:24 PM, 17th July 2022, About a month ago

In answer to the original question. No you don't need to register it.

With regards to an unregistered lease. Normally, you can apply to the land registrar to register it even if it is after a couple of months. They will normally register it you just have to say sorry.

David - s 52(1) of the Law of Property Act 1925 states that all leases over 3 years have to be executed as a deed that includes AST's which you can grant up to 21years less a day without giving the tenant any rights to enfranchise under the Housing Act 1988.

Best, Charles

TheMaluka View Profile

16:33 PM, 17th July 2022, About a month ago

Reply to the comment left by CMS at 17/07/2022 - 16:24
Thank you for that information Charles. I was aware of the requirement to execute leases of more than three years as a deed but not of the necessity for them to be executed by a solicitor as stated by Graham.

Graham Bowcock View Profile

17:37 PM, 17th July 2022, About a month ago

David

I am not writing as a solicitor, but my understanding is that s12 of the Legal Services Act 2007 (and Schedule 2) applies. I believe that a Deed is a "Reserved Instrument".

The only exemption I am aware of is that a rural practice chartered surveyor (such as myself) may write a Farm Business Tenancy agreement of any length as the Agricultural Tenancies Act specifically allows it.

I do gather, however, that the act only applies where a charge is being made, so you could, conceivably write your own Deed. You just can't do it for somebody else.

It may be best that a lawyer adds something to this to confirm or deny my opinion!

Ian Narbeth View Profile

11:25 AM, 18th July 2022, About 4 weeks ago

I will not comment on the reserved legal activities point. Judith asks:
"What will happen, under the new White Paper if it becomes law if tenants stay +7 years?

Does the tenancy then have to be retrospectively registered? Is that even possible?"

The answer is that the White Paper and any new legislation makes no difference. The law is as it has been for many years that unless the original term of the lease was more than 7 years the lease is not registerable at the Land Registry. If a fixed term lease of, say, 2 years carries on as a periodic tenancy beyond 7 years that does not trigger an obligation to register.

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