Licences to Alter

Within the body of a Lease is usually a restriction preventing the leaseholder from carrying out alterations to the property.

This may be a complete prohibition, but in most cases it will be qualified to the effect that consent must be obtained from the Landlord before any works can take place.

If it is qualified in such as way, then while a Licence would be required from the Landlord before such works can be carried out, the Landlord cannot unreasonably object.

As such, the proper way for a leaseholder to approach the Landlord is to provide a specification of the works the leaseholder intends to carry out. Enough information for the Landlord to be able to at least agree to the proposal in principle.  If he does not, and the leaseholder believes that consent has been refused unreasonably, there are certain remedies available in that situation, and we would invite you to discuss this with us, if this applies to you.

However in most situations, the Landlord will require that you cover his legal and surveyor costs required to examine and decide on the specification and draft the Licence to Alter in order for you to go ahead with those works.  It is best practice that both the Landlord and the Leaseholder have separate independent Solicitors to manage this process.

We are able to act on either side of the process (Either acting for the Landlord in the supply of the Licence, or for the leaseholder approving such licence.

For more information and to speak to a Leasehold Solicitor, please call Daniel Tang on 0208 290 7373 or email