Severnside own the freehold of around 188 properties, the leases of which were originally purchased under the government’s Right To Buy Scheme
A lease is a right of ownership for a period of time (often 125 years) and is the method of ownership used for flats.
It is a right that leaseholders can sell or pass to their heirs. Leaseholders own the flat for a period of years specified in the lease, but do not own the common part, although leaseholders will have rights over them and obligations in respect of them.
A lease is a contract between the leaseholder and Severnside Housing giving conditional ownership for a fixed period of time. It is an important document and leaseholders must ensure that they have a copy and that they understand it. The wording of leases is usually in ‘legal language’ and can vary from property to property. If you cannot understand your lease please contact us.
It is difficult to change the conditions of the lease after you buy, so make sure that the services provided in the lease are those that you want or can accept. The lease sets out the contractual obligations of the two parties: what the leaseholder has contracted to do, and what Severnside Housing as landlord is bound to do.
The leaseholder's obligations will include payment of the ground rent and contribution to the costs of maintaining and managing the building. The lease will probably also place certain conditions on the use and occupation of the flat. Severnside Housing will usually be required to manage and maintain the structure, exterior and common areas of the property, to collect contributions from all the leaseholders and keep the accounts.
Leaseholders are not necessarily entirely free to do whatever they want in or with the flat - the lease comes with conditions, to protect the rights of everyone with an interest in the building. When a flat changes hands, the seller assigns all the rights and responsibilities of the lease to the purchaser, including any future service charges that have not yet been identified.
Principally, these are:
Severnside Housing has an obligation to ensure that the leaseholder complies with such responsibilities for the good of all the other leaseholders.
These rights and responsibilities will be set out in the lease.