We help property owners across Auckland with cross lease freehold title conversions to help them fully own their properties. This can significantly enhance the property's overall value and eliminates the need to engage unnecessarily with neighbours during renovations or new construction work.
Cross lease properties can be accompanied by various challenges and concerns. Shared ownership of the land among multiple property owners can lead to conflicts regarding land use, maintenance responsibilities, and decision-making. These properties often come with specific terms and limitations outlined in the cross lease agreement, which can restrict property modifications and alterations.
Obtaining consent from other cross lease owners for renovations or modifications can lead to delays and complications. Additionally, shared access rights or utility easements in cross lease arrangements can give rise to disputes or difficulties in managing these shared rights.
The complexities of cross lease arrangements can also impact the marketability of the property. Plus uncertainties in land titles and boundaries can create legal ambiguities.
Many leasehold property owners are fully aware of the problems involved with shared title, yet they are discouraged by the complex rules and regulations involved in the conversion process.
At Civix, we assist you in acquiring a freehold title via Land Information New Zealand (LINZ).
Cross lease ownership involves shared ownership of the underlying land, where each owner grants exclusive rights to use specific portions of the land, including their flats, garages, and other structures indicated on the flats plan. Additionally, there may be communal areas accessible to multiple owners.
The lease is valid for typically around 999 years, and the cross lease legislation document includes terms that all owners are required to adhere to. These terms could impose certain restrictions, such as limitations on property use or the utilisation of specific building materials.
The Property Institute of New Zealand suggests that owners of cross lease properties might face a potential decline in property values by up to 18%. Converting cross lease to freehold NZ.
offers the advantage of separating from other owners and enhanced property value.
This transition from cross lease to freehold allows all owners to control, protect and fully manage their own individual assets. With all services being kept separate (or suitably provided with easements), any issues related to ownership or maintenance are less likely to lead to disputes.
The cross lease to freehold cost usually ranges from $1,500 to $3,000 + GST. Additional expenses might arise if easements have to be added to the new titles, such as safeguarding your water supply crossing through a neighbour's property as new boundaries are established. These legal protections ensure that your rights are preserved. Our Barrister is available to guide you through the necessary paperwork for converting your cross lease property to freehold or updating your flats plan.
We know dealing with the legal side of converting a cross lease can be overwhelming. That's why we're here to take the hard work off your hands and make it stress-free for you.
Our experts in planning, engineering, and surveying will be handling your cross lease freehold NZ conversion, making the process easy.
Reach out to us today to chat about your options. We can even assist with fixing a defective cross lease title (flats plan).
Just share your cross lease property address, and we'll share an estimate for cross lease to fee simple cost.
What is the difference between a cross lease title and a fee simple (freehold) title?
The main difference between cross lease and freehold title lies in the ownership structure of a property and the associated rights. In a cross lease title, multiple parties share ownership of the land and buildings. Each party owns a "leasehold interest" in their specific unit or flat and also holds a "share" of the land in common with other owners. This means that while you have exclusive rights to your specific unit, you collectively own the land with other cross lease owners. Cross lease properties typically come with a lease document outlining usage rights, restrictions, and obligations for all owners.
With a freehold title, you have full and exclusive ownership of both the land and the buildings on it. You don't share ownership with anyone else. This means you have the freedom to make decisions about your property without needing consent from other owners. You also have the flexibility to make alterations, renovations, and modifications to the property without restrictions imposed by cross lease agreements.
What is a unit title?
A unit title refers to a form of property ownership where individuals share common areas such as lifts, driveways, or lobbies in a multi-unit complex. Each unit owner has a separate legal title to their unit, while common areas and facilities are collectively owned by all owners as part of a body corporate. This arrangement allows for independent buying, selling, and mortgaging of units, while shared responsibilities for maintenance and administration are managed collectively through the body corporate.
Who can apply for a cross lease conversion?
Property owners who hold a cross lease title can apply for cross lease conversion to convert their shared ownership arrangement into individual freehold titles. However, it's important to note that all cross lease owners must give their consent and participate in the conversion process. In cases where a cross lease involves three or more flats, a common scenario is the inclusion of a clause in the Lease that permits a conversion to fee simple through a majority vote.
Should I ask my cross lease partner to split the conversion cost?
Whether to request the other cross lease owner to share the conversion cost equally depends on the specific circumstances, the terms of your agreement, and the nature of your relationship with the other owner.
Our suggestion is that both neighbours contribute equally to the cost, unless one party gains more benefit or is responsible for the defective title. In which case an uneven sharing might be recommended. Typically, in the majority of our conversions, clients evenly split the cost, while in the remaining cases, one party covers the entire expense. It's advisable to have open communication and discuss the cost-sharing arrangement.
How long does the conversion take?
The timeline varies based on factors such as council processing times and the complexity of the conversion. On average, the process typically spans around five to six months depending on council and LINZ processing times.
Is it important to convert all cross lease properties?
No, conversion is not mandatory for all cross lease properties. It's a personal choice based on the desire to simplify ownership and enhance property value.
What happens to the existing lease agreement?
The existing cross-lease leasehold arrangement is typically extinguished upon conversion to freehold title, as individual titles are created.
Will there be any easements?
Depending on the property's layout, some easements might be necessary, such as for shared access or services. These would be clearly defined in the new title documents.
How do you identify new legal boundaries?
We meticulously adhere to the covenant (cross lease) boundaries as outlined on the flats plan, using position, fence lines, or physical features, and transform them into legal boundaries defined by bearing and distance. We would only deviate from this method if requested by the involved parties or if there's a clear and valid reason to do so.
"We have worked with Civix for a number of years over a number of projects and always found them to be professional and committed."
"I used Civix for our subdivision in Browns Bay. They provided highly professional and timely services right from the get go, which made our consenting process a breeze. Thank you Duncan and your team."
"My working relationship with Civix spans almost 3 years as co-consultant. I have always found Duncan and the rest of the team great to work with — professional, communicative, environmentally conscious, and solutions-focused to delivering excellent project outcomes."
"I have worked with Duncan and his team on a couple of projects and always found the team to professional and timely in their responses to us and even when things don't go our way, we have always maintained a good working relationship and I would trust them to do a fair job. Jacquie Lindsay"