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Right to Buy leasehold
Leaseholders buy the lease from us (the freeholder) and have the right to occupy the property for the lifetime of the lease. The property can still be sold on the open market during this time.
Leasehold customers have a leasing agreement with us which sets out our responsibilities and your responsibilities while you’ve living in the property.
We own the structure, the common parts of the building and the land it stands on, and we’re responsible for maintaining and repairing these areas.
As a leaseholder, you pay for your share of the landlord's costs to maintain and provide services to the block and structure of the building.
We aim to provide an efficient, value for money service for our leaseholders, ensuring that the services we provide are of a high standard and charges are reasonable.
We will consult with you as required by law and contact you about proposed changes to policy or practice which will affect the management of your home or estate.
Leaseholders panel meetings
We want to continually improve the way we communicate with our customers and give leaseholders the chance to play an active role in the way we provide our services.
We want to involve leaseholders in the decision-making process and we have developed forums so you can express your views in a range of areas in leasehold management.
You can get in touch with us to discuss anything about your property, your lease or getting involved in leaseholder panels. Please contact us at:
Leaseholder frequently asked questions
- How do I pay my annual service charge?
When you pay your service charge, please ensure that the invoice number is quoted with all payments.
You can pay by:
- Direct Debit or Standing Order - if you have a current account with a bank or building society
- phone (credit/debit card) - please contact tel: 0300 111 1000
If you’re experiencing any difficulties in paying for your service charges, please contact the income section on tel: 0300 111 1000.
We can help set up realistic repayment plans or give you details about money and welfare rights advice services.
- What are management charges?
Management charges are the costs that leaseholders pay for the day-to-day management of leasehold properties. Charges are calculated for the time and costs for issues such as:
- day-to-day leasehold management
- anti social behaviour
- reporting external and communal repairs
- IT systems
- administration of invoices
- account monitoring and collection
- What are my repair and maintenance responsibilities?
You are responsible for the inside of your property and any pipes and cables that serve your flat only. This includes items such as heating, internal doors, pipe work and decoration.
- What are the landlord’s repairs and maintenance responsibilities?
We will keep the structure, exterior and the common parts of the building in good repair. This includes roofs, drains, windows (frames - not the glass), external doors, communal lighting and shared paths.
If repairs are needed to the common parts of the building, you should contact us.
You will be charged a share of the cost of these works (as detailed in your lease) which will be included in your service charge invoice.
- Can I install my own windows and doors?
If you want to install your own windows and doors you must write to the Leasehold Management Section to request permission. Please give details of the work to be carried out and the name of the contractor carrying out the work. We’ll reply to you to tell you about our decision. If the work goes ahead, we’ll inspect the standard of work once it’s completed.
- Can I report a repair?
As a leaseholder you can report certain repairs to your property. The general rule is that you can report an external repair relating to either your flat, the block it’s in or the immediate surrounding area. You are charged for your portion of the repairs as part of your annual service charge bill. Please contact us.
- What will happen if major work is needed on my block?
When major work is needed on your block such as installing a lift, cavity wall insulation, window replacement etc we’ll consult with all affected leaseholders.
This allows us to tell you about the work we’ll be carrying out on your block and how much it will cost. We’ll let you know about the share of the charges you’ll be expected to pay. In some cases you may be able to nominate a contractor to tender for the work.
The consultation process can take up to several months to complete.
You can get more details by contacting the Leasehold Management section.
- Can I sell my lease?
If you sell your flat within five years of buying it you’ll need to repay a portion of the discount you received when you first bought the lease. You would also need to pay back a portion of the increased value of the property, less any improvements.
We will provide your nominated solicitor with all the information needed to sell your lease, however you’ll be charged for this service. All outstanding charges should be paid before the sale is completed and you should make sure we receive a Notice of Transfer of the lease.
For more details about selling your lease, please contact the Leasehold Management section.
- How do I make a complaint?
You should initially take up any complaints you may have with the team responsible for the service. If you’re not happy with the outcome, you may want to follow our complaints procedure.
Because leasehold management is a specialist area, you may want to take up your grievance with an independent and impartial First Tier Tribunal (Property Chamber) which has been introduced to replace the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal. Also the Leasehold Advisory Service (LEASE) can give you help and assistance on all aspects of leasehold management.
- First Tier Tribunal (Property Chamber) national helpline tel: 0845 600 3178; or visit www.justice.gov.uk
- LEASE tel: 0207 3839800.