Know your rights
It’s important that you know your rights and responsibilities as a leaseholder or freeholder. And to know what we as a landlord or the freeholder of your property are responsible for.
Here’s a brief summary. You can find out more in your lease or transfer agreement.
Your rights and responsibilities:
As a leaseholder or freeholder your responsibilities are set out in your lease or transfer agreement. They usually include:
- Paying any service charge and rent.
- Getting written permission from us before carrying out any alterations to your home.
- Maintaining and repairing the inside of your home, including fixtures and fittings.
- Servicing your gas boiler and appliances.
- Giving our contractors access to your home to carry out any repairs
In addition to the rights set out in your lease, you’re also protected by various acts of parliament. These include:
- How we calculate your service charge
- What to do if you disagree.
- How we should consult you about major works.
If you aren’t happy with how we’ve dealt with something, you can contact the First-Tier Property Chamber. They’re an independent panel of professionals who specialise in leasehold disagreements. Please note, you can apply yourself or in a group with other leaseholders, but there is a fee.
Our rights and responsibilities:
As the freeholder of your property, our responsibilities are set out in your lease or transfer agreement. They usually include:
- Cleaning and maintaining the estate.
- Insuring the building (leaseholders only).
- Charging you for your yearly service charge.
- Consulting you (in accordance with Section 20 of the Landlord and tenant Act 1985) before entering into a contract or starting work.
Making improvements or alterations to a property
You need to check your lease before making any improvements, additions or alterations to your home as you might need written permission from us. If you make changes without permission, you may have to put your home back to its original state.
How to make an alteration request and what happens next?
- First you need to email our Leasehold Team or call 020 3325 2323.
- Our surveyor will then visit your property to ensure the works won’t cause any problems to the building.
- Once the work has been carried out, our surveyor will need to visit your property again to check the work before we grant formal consent. You’ll need to provide a completion certificate and professional installation certificates, such as gas or electrical certificates.
- We don’t allow any changes that would jeopardise fire safety, such as changing entrance doors. If you make changes without asking us first, you may be asked to change the property back to how it was before, If this happens, you'll have to pay for any changes.
- You can only make structural alterations if your lease allows.
What if I want to manage my own block?
- You’ll first need to check if your block is eligible on the government website.
- Then seek the support of the majority of leaseholders and form a limited company.
- You may also wish to seek independent advice from an organisation such as the Leasehold Advisory Service.
- Once you’ve done this, email us at email@example.com. Our home ownership team will contact you to discuss the application and advise on what to do next.
- You'll need to serve a claim notice on the freeholder. If we’re not the freeholder of your block and you have concerns about how your building is being managed, please contact us.