Ten facts about leasehold
1. In 2004 Leasehold is still the only way to ‘own’ a flat, (sometimes a house).
2. Leaseholders do NOT actually own the property, just permission – subject to conditions – to live there for the time left on the lease.
3. Leaseholders buy a time period, not a property.
4. The property owner is still a freeholder, who is also in charge.
5. Lessees pay the freeholder for the upkeep of the building.
6. The less time left on the lease, the less it’s worth, because it has to be returned (free of charge) to the freeholder, who sells it again.
7. When their lease ends, their homes are still there but lessees have to leave, or may rent them back from the freeholder but without any long term security.
8. As time passes, maintenance of the building and services costs more. The leaseholder pays for this, but on the freeholder’s orders.
9. As time passes the lease also gets shorter, and a leasehold property loses value in two ways: it costs more to maintain, and the freeholder can charge more to lengthen its lease.
10. There are over two million leaseholds in England. The numbers are increasing daily. In 2003 property developers created more new leaseholds than separate houses.