Your rights as a leaseholder
As a leaseholder you have a number of rights. Some of these are included below, but you should check your lease for the full details.
You have the right to:
- ask Birmingham City Council to repair the shared and structural parts of your building
- make alterations to the inside of your home as long as you do not remove the structural wall (or windows) or cause damage to the outside or shared part of the building
- challenge administration or service charges
- be consulted on major works which will cost you more than £250
- be consulted on long-term agreements: the council must consult with leaseholders before it enters into a contract that will last more than 12 months and will cost you more than £100 a year in service charges
- expect your landlord to deal with problems in your building, such as neighbour nuisance, dirt, rubbish and so on
- live in your home without interference from your neighbours or the landlord, as long as you keep to the conditions of your lease
- sell your leasehold property
- take in lodgers or rent out your home
- leaseholders who meet certain conditions can demand a new lease from the council which adds 90 years to the existing lease. The price is normally agreed between the council and leaseholder. If an agreement can’t be reached, the price is set by a housing tribunal.
- groups of leaseholders who meet certain conditions can get together and purchase the freehold to their building. This is called Collective Enfranchisement.
- if a lease doesn’t properly cover things like repairs or building maintenance, it is possible to change or “vary” the lease. The council and the leaseholder must agree to the changes. If an agreement can’t be reached, the leaseholder or the council can apply to a housing tribunal for a decision.
Check your leaseholder handbook for more information.