The pros and cons of Leasehold vs Freehold properties

In my latest article you will find some of the pros and cons of both leasehold and freehold properties. 

By carefully weighing the pros and cons of each option, you as a buyer can make an informed choice that fits in with your lifestyle and long-term goals in home ownership.

Leasehold Properties:


1. Affordability: Leasehold properties often come with a lower upfront cost compared to freehold properties, making them more accessible to first-time buyers or those with a limited budget.

2. Minimal Maintenance Responsibility: In many cases, the responsibility for maintaining the common areas and exterior of the property falls to the landlord or management company, relieving the leaseholder of these tasks and associated costs.

3. Access to Amenities:  Leasehold properties, particularly those within managed developments, often offer access to shared amenities such as gyms, gardens, or communal spaces.

4. Community Living: Living in a leasehold property can help foster a sense of community, as residents often share common areas and facilities this can enable social interaction and create a supportive environment.


1. Limited Control: Leaseholders have limited control over their property, as they must adhere to the terms outlined in the lease agreement, which may include restrictions on any alterations, subletting, or pet ownership.

2. Ground Rent and Service Charges: Leasehold properties typically require payment of ground rent and service charges to the landlord or management company, which can increase over time and become a significant financial burden.

3. Lease Extension Costs: Extending the lease on a leasehold property can be costly,  involving legal fees, valuation fees, and potential negotiation with the landlord, which adds to the overall expense of homeownership.

4. Risk of Leasehold Scandals: Leasehold properties have been subject to controversy in recent years due to issues such as escalating ground rents, building safety,  controversial lease terms, and disputes over maintenance responsibilities, potentially leading to financial and legal complications for leaseholders.

Freehold Properties:


1. Absolute Ownership: Freehold properties offer the highest level of ownership rights which provides the homeowner with complete control over the property including the land it sits on without any time restrictions or lease agreements.

2. Flexibility:  Freehold homeowners enjoy greater flexibility in terms of making any modifications or improvements to their property, as they are not bound by lease restrictions and do not require permission from a landlord.

3. No Ground Rent or Service Charges: Unlike leasehold properties, freehold properties do not have ongoing payments of ground rent or service charges, allowing homeowners to avoid additional financial obligations beyond mortgage repayments and maintenance costs. Although with Freeholds, and more common in Estates there can be Estate Charges covering the costs of services required to maintain the Estate.

4. Potential for Value to increase: Freehold properties typically have greater potential for the value to increase as they are not subject to the depreciating effects of a diminishing lease term, making them a potentially lucrative investment.


1. A Higher Upfront Cost: Freehold properties often come with a higher initial purchase price compared to leasehold properties, which can pose a barrier to entry for some buyers, particularly those with limited financial resources.

2. Greater Maintenance Responsibility:  Freehold homeowners are solely responsible for the maintenance and upkeep of their property, including repairs to the exterior, roof, and grounds, which can take up significant time, effort, and expense.

3. Limited Access to Amenities: Freehold properties may lack access to shared amenities or facilities commonly found in leasehold developments, such as communal gardens or leisure facilities, potentially impacting your overall lifestyle and convenience.

4. Legal Obligations: Freehold homeowners are subject to various legal obligations, such as compliance with planning regulations, building regulations, and property taxes, which require diligence and adherence to avoid potential legal consequences.

The decision between leasehold and freehold properties ultimately depends on your individual circumstances, preferences, and priorities. While leasehold properties offer affordability and convenience with shared amenities, they come with restrictions and ongoing financial obligations. On the other hand, freehold properties provide complete ownership and potential for value appreciation but they do require greater financial investment and maintenance responsibility. 

Our Residential Property team can help you with the whole conveyancing process, whatever your circumstances. For more information and advice, contact Joe Jordan, on 01473 298295 or at

Joe (Joseph) Jordan