Originally Posted by Texas Proud
Maybe you can shed some light on this... I was never quite sure of this and did not get a good answer when I asked people over there....
I lived in a flat that was rented by my company... but it was 'owned/rented' by someone else... I would check out the prices etc. of other flats around me and the prices were pretty high.... but they would say '700 years left on the lease'... some were are low as 100 years or so...
When I asked, I was told that they were owned by some royal or other 'noble' etc. and they were leased out with long term leases up to 999 years... I do not know if you have to pay a monthly payment for this or not... but when you 'bought' a house, all you did was buy the lease...
Now, me being me.... I asked, 'what happens when the lease runs out?'... IOW, if a lease only has 50 years or less on it, why would I want to buy it for a high price and then get kicked out in 50 years... they said there was an auto renewal.... OK.. then at what rate
This would seem to mean that you are paying something monthly....
As I said, I never quite understood how you owned something... note: I was only in London when I was doing this, so who knows about the rest of the country....
The 999 year lease is found in lots of places where the land is owned by some private individual. I don't really know what happens when the lease runs out. As time approaches I would expect the local authorities would negotiate a new lease or buy the land outright.
All the houses we owned were on "freehold" land although the house we owned in Guisborough was on land originally owned by Lord Guisborough and he still retained the mineral rights.
Originally Posted by Brat
Seniors down size in the US when they are tired of maintaining, cleaning, a large house, or they want to sell and purchase a less expensive home. Why aren't seniors in the UK behaving similarly?
I don't think the government needs to spend money on this issue or get particularly pushy, they need to look at constraints on mobility.
Lots of seniors in the UK do the same, but many hold onto their houses for the reasons FD mentions. Very few seniors in the the UK have a large house as Americans understand large houses, so they are not exactly rattling around in them.
None of our parents, aunts or uncles, downsized when they retired, as they all liked to have spare bedrooms for their visiting children and grandchildren, and although they all lived in 3 bedroom houses they were all around the 1,000 sq ft mark. People get very attached to their homes, and while they can afford them and are fit enough to maintain them, they are likely to stay put.