Your lease explained
When you bought your home you signed a lease. Your lease is a legal document that explains your rights and responsibilities as a leaseholder (or lessee) and the relationship between you and us, as the freeholder of your home.
Your solicitor will have explained the lease before you bought your home, but if you have any questions your solicitor or our Leaseholder team will help you.
Your lease explains:
- When and by how much your rent goes up each year.
- How you can buy more shares in your home.
- How you can sell your home.
If you bought a newly-built home a plan will be attached to your lease. This plan shows the boundaries of your home, as well as any car-parking spaces and the fences and walls that are your responsibility to maintain.
The lease contains legally-binding responsibilities both for you and us.
- You must pay your rent and service charge, as set out in your lease.
- You must not carry out major alterations to your home without our permission.
- You must not cause a nuisance or annoy your neighbours.
- You must keep your home in good repair inside and out if you have a house and inside if you have an apartment.
- You must get permission from us to keep a pet, fit wooden flooring or fit a satellite dish if you live in an apartment or house that we have built. If you bought your home under the DIYSO scheme, there are usually no restrictions.
- We must keep your home insured.
- We must consult you about repairs to any shared areas that will cost more than £250 for each home.
- We must keep the outside of apartment blocks in good repair.
- We must provide audited service-charge accounts where we provide services.
- We must not unreasonably refuse you permission for improvements or alterations that you may want to make to your home.
It is important that you keep to the conditions of your lease.
If you would like any more information about your lease, please contact us online or on 0800 015 6536.
- Do you own 100% of your home (and have done so for over two years)?
- Has the term of your lease reduced below 80 years?
If the answer is yes, then you may want to consider extending your lease.
As your lease gets shorter, the value of the lease decreases and this can affect the value of your home.
The benefits of extending your lease:
- On completion of a lease extension 90 years is added to what is already left on your existing lease. For example, if you have 75 years left on your lease you will be given a new lease of 165 years.
- Your property will be more desirable when selling with a higher lease term, rather than struggling to sell because with a short lease mortgage lenders may be reluctant to lend money to potential purchasers.
Find out more on our 'Lease extensions explained' page.