- If you have purchased a former council flat either through the right to buy scheme or on the open market and hold a long lease of a flat or maisonette you are likely to be a leaseholder. This means that you are the legal owner of the flat for the period of the lease but the council is responsible for providing common services and maintaining the exterior of the block and common parts.
You will have a legal agreement with the Council (the owner of the freehold of the block) called a Lease.
- If you have lost or misplaced your lease you can request a copy through the Land Registry or Legal and Governance Services.
- If you are a council tenant and require information on Right to Buy
If you have recently purchased a leasehold property it is a good idea to familiarise yourself with your lease as this will contain information on your rights and responsibilities.
When you take possession of the property your solicitor will provide the council with a Notice of Transfer showing that you are now the legal owner of the property. Please make sure your solicitor sends this notice as soon as possible as this will hold up the transfer of accounts. Once we have received notice a new account will be set up in your name and we will send you a Welcome Letter detailing service the charges for your property. Please make sure we have your correspondence address if you are not planning to live at the property as this is not always disclosed in the transfer paperwork.
Your service charges run yearly from 1 April to 31 March. You will be advised of your estimated service charges in March in the form of an estimated statement. In September you will receive a second statement advising you of the actual charges and any credit or debit owing will be applied to your service charge account.
Southampton City Council provides buildings insurance of which you will pay a proportion of with your service charges. The policy provides cover in respect of loss or damage caused to the building, it does not cover fixtures fittings and possessions inside your property so it is strongly advisable that you obtain contents insurance.
If you are planning to let out your property you must contact the Insurance team as this will affect your cover. Please email email@example.com for more details.
Buildings insurance documents:
If you need any more help or advice please contact the Leasehold Services team at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 023 8083 2337. Our phone line is open on Tuesday and Thursday from 9.00 to 12.00