I’ve already wrote a bit about flying freehold properties in a previous article Freehold And Leasehold, however I thought I would touch up on it, as I don’t think I was clear enough with my explanation. Plus, I know a little more about the issue now than I did before.
Firstly, a flying freehold property isn’t about a property that is literally “flying” The flying part need not be in mid-air, it can be over a part of someone else’s freehold, or over a common part. Basically, a flying freehold property is part of a property that covers part of an area which is part of another freehold property. Ok, admittedly, this is rather pathetic. but this is literally a 30sec diagram I whipped up in MS paint:
Yes, yes, laugh it up. Anyways, let me explain what’s happening in the diagram. The redline represents the dividing line between the freeholds for each property. But as you can see, property B’s balcony overhangs on Property A’s land, and that’s what is known as a flying freehold. This is just one example of how a flying freehold situation occurs, there are many other ways a property can become part of a flying freehold.
Flying freehold is not a major problem. If you’re planning on purchasing/selling a property with a flying freehold, Conveyancing Solicitor’s may have to do a bit more work which may increase your legal fees a tad, apart from that everything should be fine. If you’re buying a property with a flying freehold, your Solicitor/Conveyancer should get the Vendors’ solicitor/conveyancer to obtain an Indemnity Insurance Quote- this will cover you when you buy, and when you sell on.
Indemnity insurance is a policy to protect a purchaser from the possibility of third party claims arising from shortcomings in the conveyance. These can often relate to ownership, lost documents, access, poorly worded legal documents or perhaps a restrictive covenant that imposes specific restrictions. So it’s definitely worth enforcing when a flying freehold property is involved.