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Your lease

The most important document is your lease or transfer document. Your solicitor should have given you a copy when you completed on your purchase.

Please keep this safe and contact Land Registry if you need a new copy.

Guinness leases are normally 99 or 125 years long from the completion date of the first sale. If you buy a property from another leaseholder, you’ll take on their lease and the remaining years.

You’ll usually pay an annual ground rent and service charge to keep shared areas in good condition.

Some of our homes – usually houses or bungalows – are freehold. This means that you own the property outright. Your lease or transfer agreement should explain whether your home is leasehold or freehold.

What’s in your lease?

A lease or transfer document is a legal contract so please keep it safe. If you lose it, we can replace it for a small fee.

Your lease explains your rights and responsibilities as a leaseholder. It sets out our responsibilities too. It describes any charges and any circumstances where your lease could end. It also tells you how long your lease is.

Leases are not all the same. It’s worth checking yours first if you have any questions about your home.

Changing and extending your lease

If you want to extend the time left on your lease please contact the resales team.

You can suggest a change to the terms of your lease. This might be needed if it doesn’t include the right information for things like repairs or maintenance.

If you’d like to change the lease, please contact the homeowner legal services team on 0303 123 1890 (option 4). We’ll make sure it doesn’t conflict with any other leases and check it with other leaseholders if necessary.

You’ll need to pay legal and administration fees to make any changes to your lease.

Adding or removing a leaseholder

You can add or remove another person from the lease if everyone involved agrees. You’ll need permission from us, and from your lender if you have a mortgage.

A solicitor will help you with the transfer of the lease, so there’ll be legal costs to pay, as well as any costs incurred by us.

Buying the freehold of your home

Leaseholders may have the right to buy the freehold of the building as a group depending on certain conditions. If the residents and the freeholder can’t agree a price for the sale then this will be set by the First Tier Tribunal.