If you are looking to buy a property, you may have lots of questions. Should you buy a flat or a maisonette or a terraced or even a detached house? One question you might be asking is “Why would anyone buy a leasehold property?”. Let’s look at the reasons why people do buy leasehold properties.
What Is Freehold And Leasehold
Generally you either buy a leasehold or a freehold property.
A freehold property means that you own the house and all of the land that the house sits on, including front and rear gardens right up to the boundary of the property.
A leasehold property, on the other hand, sits on someone else’s freehold land. You only own the property that you purchase on that land and you lease the right for that property to be on that land.
Why Do You Have Leasehold Properties?
Quite simply, if only freehold properties were built, you would have to build a lot more properties to house everyone in the UK.
There would not be a lot of land left to enjoy!
With leasehold land, you can build a lot of properties on one piece of freehold land, in the form of flats or apartments.
Whereas you could only have one freehold property on the piece of land, you could build up 10, 100 or 1,000 properties on one piece of freehold land, depending how high up you want to build.
This allows a lot of people to live on that one piece of land, and each of the flats or apartments buys a lease which gives them the right to live in their property on that land.
Let’s Look At The Reasons Why People Buy Leasehold Land
Quite simply, because a lot of apartments or flat are built on one piece of land, they will cost less than buying a freehold property on the same piece of land.
This makes leasehold properties such as flats, apartments and maisonettes, more affordable.
With property prices consistently increasing, it would be very hard for people to ever get on the property ladder if all properties were freehold.
2. Less Maintenance
With a leasehold property, all of the leaseholders will share any costs of repairs to the outside of the building or the roof.
If you owned the freehold land you would have to pay for any repairs to your property on your own, meaning they would be more expensive.
Some people enjoy living in flats or apartments because they feel safe having other people living beside them and above and below them.
Their neighbours will notice any strangers coming and going, so they feel more secure in a leasehold property.
4. Energy bills
By living in a leasehold property, the fact that there are other properties above, below and beside you, means that you need less energy to keep the property warm.
In a freehold property, there will be two, three or four outside walls depending whether you are mid terrace, end terrace or semi detached (3) or detached (4). There is also the roof.
Each exterior wall and roof is where energy leaves the property, so you will need to use more energy to keep your freehold property warm than you would in a leasehold property.
Some people would feel isolated living alone, whereas by having people above, beside and below you, you are far more likely to see people living in a leasehold property than if you live in a freehold one.
6. No Garden
Whilst some people would enjoy having their own garden, others find the thought of having to maintain a garden tiresome, so choosing a leasehold property without a garden saves them having to worry about maintaining a garden.
We hope you can see that there are many reasons why people buy a leasehold property.
Whilst it might not be for you, many people for all of the reasons above, choose to live in a leasehold property and are happy to do so.
Whether you are looking to buy a leasehold or a freehold property, speaking with a specialist conveyancing solicitor
Early on in the process can save you a lot of stress and inconvenience.