What is staircasing?

Staircasing is the process where shared owners can increase the share of the property they own. This is done in tranches, which is basically the percentage you can increase by. The tranches will usually be detailed in your lease.

In some cases, you can increase your share to 100%. If you own a house, this may also mean you can acquire the freehold. Details of the maximum share you can purchase will also be detailed in your lease.

The greater the share you buy in your home, the less rent you will have to pay. If the details in your lease allow you to staircase to 100%, you will become an outright owner and will no longer have to pay rent, although you may still need to pay service charges.

What is the process for staircasing?

  1. Contact Sanctuary to advise of intention to staircase
  2. Sanctuary will send leaseholder the sale procedure with the valuation form
  3. Sanctuary receives completed valuation form
  4. Sanctuary instructs valuer
  5. Valuer will contact leaseholder directly to arrange valuation
  6. Valuer sends valuation report to Sanctuary
  7. Sanctuary sends the leaseholder the valuation report and con­firms price for the share they wish to purchase
  8. Leaseholder needs to confirm in writing (e-mail is acceptable) their intention to proceed and confirm their solicitor’s details
  9. Sanctuary instructs their internal or external solicitors

Staircasing FAQ’s

Why is a valuation needed?

A valuation is required to determine the market value of the property. As Sanctuary will be selling a percentage to you, it is important that the price the share is sold for is fair and equitable.

Who will carry out the valuation and how long will it be valid for?

The valuer who will carry out the valuation must be a member of the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), Valuations are valid for three months, after which time the valuer may extend or need to re-value depending on market conditions.

Are there any costs involved?

You will need to pay for the valuation, your solicitor’s fees, our solicitor’s fees and any disbursements. These will be explained in advance by your solicitor and Sanctuary where applicable.

Would solicitors need to be involved?

Yes, we strongly recommend that you seek professional legal advice prior to staircasing and that you instruct a solicitor to act on your behalf.

How much can I buy (what percentage can I staircase to)?

You should refer to your lease, in any case your solicitor will be able to advise you.

If your lease allows you to staircase to 100% and you own a house, this would usually mean you will acquire the freehold.

Your rent will reduce as your share increases, but there may still be service charges payable for grounds maintenance etc.

Who do I contact for further information?

If you would like further information on the staircasing procedure you can contact our Conveyancing Team by email conveyancing@sanctuary-housing.co.uk.

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