Money Wellness
Illustrated image of a row of houses. The Leasehold and Freehold Reform Act. What is the different between leasehold and freehold
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calendar icon28 May 2024

New law makes life easier for leasehold homeowners

A new law called the Leasehold and Freehold Reform Act was passed last Friday. This law helps people who own leasehold homes by giving them more rights and making things fairer for them.

What's the difference between leasehold and freehold?

When you buy a home, it can be either freehold or leasehold:

  • Freehold means you own the property and the land it's built on forever.
  • Leasehold means you only own the property for a set number of years, but not the land. You also have to pay the freeholder ground rent and service charges.

How the new law helps leasehold homeowners

The Leasehold and Freehold Reform Act makes life better for leasehold homeowners in several ways:

  • It's now cheaper and easier to extend your lease or buy your freehold, giving you more security in your home.
  • When you extend your lease, you'll now get 990 years instead of just 50 or 90 years.
  • Freeholders have to be clearer about service charges, so you can challenge them if they seem unfair.
  • It's simpler for leaseholders to take over managing their building if they want to.
  • Leaseholders don't have to pay the freeholder's costs anymore when they want to extend their lease or buy their freehold.
  • Freeholders have to belong to a scheme so you can complain about them if needed.
  • and make the process of buying, selling or extending a leasehold faster and fairer.

No more new leasehold houses

The law also says that almost all new houses built from now on must be freehold. This means people buying a new house won't have to worry about leases.

While the new law doesn't fix everything, it's a big step in making things better and fairer for the millions of leasehold homeowners in England and Wales.

Avatar of Caroline Chell

Caroline Chell

Caroline has worked in financial communications for more than 10 years, writing content on subjects such as pensions, mortgages, loans and credit cards, as well as stockbroking and investment advice.

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