Find out about your leasehold

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All of Adur's leasehold flats were originally Council housing stock and occupied by Council tenants. Many of these flats have since been bought by Council tenants under the Right to Buy scheme and are now owned leasehold. Some are still owned by the original Right to Buy purchaser, and some will have subsequently been sold on the open market. 

The Leasehold Team are here to provide you with advice and assistance if you're:

  • an Adur District Council leaseholder
  • a Council tenant buying your home through the Right to Buy scheme
  • buying one of Adur's leasehold flats on the open market

What is a leasehold?

Leasehold ownership is simply a long tenancy, where you will own a property for a fixed amount of time.

Leasehold flats can be in purpose-built blocks, in converted houses or above commercial premises.

Leasehold ownership of a flat relates to everything within its four walls, including floorboards and plaster to the walls and ceiling. It does not include the external or structural walls, the common parts of the building or the land it stands on. This is owned by Adur District Council, who as the landlord are responsible for the maintenance and repair of the building.

What is a lease?

As a leaseholder you will have a legal agreement with the landlord (in this case, Adur District Council) called a lease. This will tell you how long you'll own the property. Adur's leases are generally for a period of 125 years from the date of the first sale of a property in the building.

A lease sets out what your rights and responsibilities as a leaseholder are, and what the landlord is responsible for.

As an Adur Homes leaseholder you will have to pay ground rent and a service charge, which is a proportionate contribution towards the costs of maintaining and managing the building.

Your lease will also detail a number of other conditions regarding the use and occupation of the flat - please see below:

Your rights as a leaseholder

As a leaseholder you have the right to:

  • expect the landlord to maintain and repair the structure of the building and manage the common parts
  • access other parts of the building and other flats to carry out repairs to your own flat, having given reasonable notice
  • know your landlord's name and UK address, which must be stated on every service charge demand
  • be consulted by the landlord when they are planning to carry out any major works to the building which will cost £250 or more per flat: failure to consult may result in the landlord being unable to recover all costs
  • be consulted on any agreements or contracts lasting 12 months or more where the cost to any leaseholder will be more than £100 annually: failure to consult may result in the landlord being unable to recover all costs
  • challenge service charges via the First-Tier Tribunal if you consider them to be unreasonable, whether you've already paid them or not
  • apply to the First-Tier Tribunal to challenge other lease administration charges, such as fees for providing information on resale
  • extend your lease with a price agreed between the parties or set by the First-Tier Tribunal, as long as you satisfy certain conditions
  • collectively purchase the freehold of the building with a group of other leaseholders who all satisfy certain conditions; again with a price being agreed between the parties, or set by the First-Tier Tribunal

Your responsibilities as a leaseholder

Your lease will tell you which conditions you've agreed to, including to:

  • pay ground rent and service charges
  • maintain the inside of your flat to a good standard, including any service pipes or cables which only serve your property, individual front/back doors including frames, internal plumbing, internal electrics, window and door furniture, water tanks and decorative finishes
  • behave in a neighbourly way
  • not make certain alterations to the property without asking the landlord's consent
  • allow the Council to access your flat if they need to investigate a fault or carry out a repair; unless it is an emergency this would be with reasonable notice

The Council's responsibilities as landlord

As the landlord, the Council is responsible for:

  • managing and maintaining the structure of the building, the exterior and common areas (entrance halls, staircases, etc)
  • collecting the service charge from leaseholders
  • insuring the building and its common parts; part of the service charge collected from leaseholders will contribute towards the premium

Further advice and information

For more information about living in a leasehold property please see:

For further advice please contact the Leasehold Team.

General independent advice and useful information for leaseholders can also be found on:

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Page last updated: 26 November 2021

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