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Joshua, Lawyer
Category: Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 28928
Experience:  LL.B (Hons), Higher Prof. Dip. Law & Practice
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My landlord has sold the building, i have 8 years of a 10

Customer Question

my landlord has sold the building, i have 8 years of a 10 lease, what are my rights to tranfer the lease to the new landlord
JA: Because laws vary from place to place, can you tell me what state the property is in?
Customer: England UK
JA: What are the terms of the lease? Any issues related to maintenance or upkeep?
Customer: Not a full repairing lease, in fact the agreement is a license, quite basic
JA: Is there anything else the Lawyer should know before I connect you? Rest assured that they'll be able to help you.
Customer: There it problems with the fire brigade condemning the building and therefore has been having work carried out over the last 18 month, there is still problem like no electrical certificate and exposed asbestos
Submitted: 12 days ago.
Category: Property Law
Expert:  Joshua replied 11 days ago.

Hello and thank you for your question. My name is ***** ***** I will be very pleased to assist you. I'm a practising lawyer in England with over 15 years’ experience. Please be aware that although I will endeavour to reply to you promptly, I am also in full time private practice and so I may not be available to respond immediately and it may also take me a few minutes to prepare a reply. The site will notify you as soon as I respond. I look forward to working with you to answer your question fully.

I am very sorry to read of the above and I imagine what a difficult position it must be. I will certainly try to clarify your options.

  1. May I confirm if this is a commercial lease or residential lease please? I suspect the former from what you say
  2. you mentioned that this is in fact not a lease but a licence. would you have a copy of it available to upload? If not, are you familiar with the determination ( cancellation) provisions in the licence?
Expert:  Joshua replied 11 days ago.

I'm following up on the above. Without some further information from you as above, I am limited in what I can say on the matter but in the hope it is helpful nonetheless, I will provide you with the following broad answer. If you are able to kindly provide me with the above further information or if you have any further questions generally, I will be delighted to expand on the following - please just reply back to me in this case:

Notwithstanding the above, in general terms if the freehold of a missus is sold, this does not directly affect the leasehold title which continues to subsist as against the new owner as it did against the old owner. In other words, the leaseholder would have the same rights as against any new owner as they would have had against the old owner. It is just a change of name on the freehold title. Accordingly if the existing lease had a right to assign the lease to a new party, and that rights would continue to exist as against any new freehold owner. By contrast, if the lease does not have a right to assign or requires permission of the freeholder to assign, then you would not have a right to assign or would need to ask the freeholder's permission respectively.

I hope the above is of some assistance but if you have any further questions, please revert to me

Customer: replied 7 days ago.
Joshua, please respond to my last messgae. Things are getting very involved here and I need to get advise to be able to react on. asap please.
Expert:  Joshua replied 6 days ago.

Hello - I am very sorry but I cannot see any outstanding message other than your last message asking me to respond. Are you able to kindly clarify what message you are referring to?

Customer: replied 6 days ago.
I sent you copies of my licenses, please check that they are in order. The Northampton Fire Brigade visited last feb 2020 and condemned the place and issued an order for work to be done. the owner then agreed that if I helped with carry-out some of the tasks on the list I would not pay rent until the NFB were satisfied. The new owners are now insisting that I pay the arrears. with I say there is not, I have no written agreement, the old owner has never requested any payment and can the new owners request payment for this rental period, I have made it very clear I will start to pay rent as soon as the works are completed. there is also problems with abestos, heating of the building, water penertration and much more.
Customer: replied 6 days ago.
File attached (2675622)
Expert:  Joshua replied 5 days ago.
  1. There appear to be two licences above. May I confirm the period you had not paid for please?
  2. During that period have you been able to use the premises?
  3. If not can you clarify precisely why not? You refer for example to the premises being condemned by a fire safety officer and some other issues?
Customer: replied 5 days ago.
The fire brigade issued the notice in feb 2020, it was agreed that in lieu of rent if I carried out works to satisfy the fire brigade. I have completed all the item that I agreed to, the then landlord was to complete items ie fire alarm, gas safety certificate, electrical safety certificate etc, these have not been done. so I am refusing to pay rent until these have be completed. there are other issued with heating and water leakages from the roof.
I have had access to the building so unable to employ anybody because of the conditions and lack of certification.The owner agent is now requesting that the arrears be paid, can they request this as it was an agreement with the previous ownerThank you
Expert:  Joshua replied 5 days ago.

If you reached an agreement with the previous owner as regards ***** ***** rent in lieu of works being carried out then such agreement would bind the new owner. Ideally of course you would have this agreement in writing or the new owner would have the opportunity to dispute what you say

Customer: replied 5 days ago.
It was a verbal agreement, as with other tenants to pay reduced rent, no invoice have been offered and no demand has been received. Do I have to pay rent for premises in these conditions and can they demand the outstanding arrears.
Expert:  Joshua replied 5 days ago.
Verbal agreements are inherently risky as they are only as good as the word of the people involved. The starting point is that the new landlord is in a strong position on the issue of rent arrears as there is a licence agreement that makes are you liable for rent and and simultaneously come at you with knowledge you have not paid rent for a period of time based only upon a verbal agreement with a landlord that is now departed.This is far from ideal from your point of view. Ideally comment you may be able to obtain written confirmation from the previous landlord as regards ***** ***** that was made and this, coupled with the evidence of the actual works that you have paid to carry out would hopefully combine to produce a competent rebuttal to the demands for rent arrears.If you cannot obtain the above confirmation from the old landlord then you will be limited to what evidence you can produce yourself to support your claims in relation to the agreement and any statements of othersnthat were privy to the details. In addition, if you can demonstrate that the premises will not fit for for the purpose for which they were licensed for any period of your then you could claim breach of contract on the path of the landlord because one of the obligations of the landlord is to allow you to use the premises for the purposes set out in the agreement
Customer: replied 5 days ago.
Interesting. so does never having an electricial saftey certificate, not repairing the heating system, failure to repair roof leaks etc etc. make a breach of contract and am I within my rights to reclaim paid rent for the duration of the license. The new landlord want to reaccess the rent, my license states rent reviews to agreed by both parties.
Also does the landlord have any rights to change the lock or lock me out with a court order.
Customer: replied 5 days ago.
who is responible for any breach of contact and claims the new landlord or old landlord.