Residential Leasehold Law

London is one of the world’s prime property markets for both home ownership and investment and a substantial proportion of residential property both in the capital and outside it is leasehold.   Residential leasehold law is notoriously complex, having evolved piecemeal over the last 10 centuries into the modern law that governs residential property ownership today.  Despite no fewer than six pieces of major legislation having been passed since 1985 alone, it remains a fusion of past and present, and is never static, but evolving constantly in response to modern demands and trends.

Our clients

We act for resident management companies who have enfranchised (bought the freehold), individuals (whether freeholders or leaseholders), managing agents and residents associations.  We also act for some social landlords (housing associations and housing Co-ops).
Whether you are a group of corporate interests or a private individual, you will be guaranteed expert advice delivered in a clear, practical and cost effective way.

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You and your lease

Whether you are an established freehold estate owner of prime London property or a leaseholder in a conversion that comprises only two flats, the key document which governs your relationship with your tenants (or landlord) is your lease. Despite a move towards the usage of plain English, a modern residential lease is generally a lengthy document often couched in technical language which can be impenetrable to the ordinary person.

The terms of your lease will cover a huge range of issues, from whether a freeholder can charge for the installation of double glazing, to whether a leaseholder is permitted to sublet. The lease itself is then overlaid by a web of statutory provisions which may impose additional requirements and/or prohibitions on the parties.

What we do

Our expertise and in-depth knowledge of this complex and dynamic area of law will guide you through the legal maze and ensure that you avoid any potentially costly pitfalls. We can advise and if necessary represent you in proceedings in the following areas

  • Service Charge Recovery
  • Consultation on major works
  • Insurance
  • Legal costs recovery and other administration charges
  • Lease construction and variation
  • Appointing a manager
  • Setting up a right to manage (RTM) company
  • Forfeiture (bringing the lease to an end)
  • Litigation arising from lease extensions/ freehold purchase
  • Guidance on good management practice


Click on the links below to find out more about our property / civil dispute services

Property Disputes

Civil and Commercial Disputes