What is Freehold Ownership?

If you own the freehold, it means that you own the building and the land it stands on outright, in perpetuity. It is your name in the land registry as “freeholder”, owning the “title absolute”. Freehold is pretty much always the preferred option: you can’t really go wrong with it.
  • You won’t have to pay annual ground rent
  • You don’t have a freeholder either failing to maintain the building, or charging huge amounts for it
  • You have responsibility for maintaining the fabric of the building – the roof and the outside walls
  • Whole houses are normally sold freehold

Additional Guidelines

If I own my property why do I have to pay a Service/Maintenance Charge?

Sometimes a property may be part of a larger development where the owners share maintenance responsibilities for common areas, footpaths, even roadways.

In cases such as this it is likely that the situation came about on account of requirements placed on the developer by the local authority as regards ongoing maintenance of common areas that might otherwise been adopted and maintained by the local authority.

Even though I own my property I have to pay a Rent Charge. What is that?

A Rent Charge is a charge placed on a freehold property. It may also be known as a Chief Rent. The amount of the Rent Charge payable will be set out in the conveyance (the document that records your ownership). That same document may also set out certain conditions placed upon you, known as the Covenants.

I own a house but am a RMC member/shareholder. Who arranges my Insurance?

If you own a house, whether or not you are a member/shareholder in a RMC, it is usual that you should arrange your own buildings and (optionally) contents insurance. In this case you will find that you have not been charged for buildings insurance by the RMC.

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