When Tony Cross’s father was the first buyer at a McCarthy & Stone retirement development in Folkestone, Kent, he thought he was getting a bargain. The sales rep offered him an “early bird” discount, knocking £3,000 off the cost of a one-bed flat, selling it to him for £161,950 in 2007.
The Guardian reports the heir to a retirement flat at Laurel Court in Folkestone bought for £161,950 in 2007 is considering an offer of £28,000 from a buying service.
Why do property values fall at Laurel Court, asks Patrick Collinson.
The answer is because the property values of the flats is of no financial concern to either the freeholder, the Tchenguiz Family Trust based in the British Virgin Islands or its former company Peverel / FirstPort which manages the site.
Both will be paid the same whatever the value of the leases: FirstPort in management fees; Tchenguiz gets the ground rents – or rather Rothesay Life does, in a loan arrangement on Tchenguiz’s entire freehold portfolio.
The only people who care about the value of the leases are the leaseholders, who are completely disempowered and irrelevant to the income streams of the site.
Here are the dismal figures from the Land Registry: