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When you purchase a shared ownership property, you’ll sign a lease. This is a legally binding contract between you, as the leaseholder, and LRHA, as your landlord.

Your lease gives you the right to use and live in your home for a set period of time. This is known as the ‘term’ of the lease. LRHA owns the freehold of the building and, in most cases, the land that the property is built on.

You, as the owner occupier have full responsibility for the property as defined in the lease.

A shared ownership lease usually lasts for 99 or 125 years from the date the first person bought a share in the property.  The home can be bought or sold during that time and the length of the lease decreases. So, if the property is sold to a new shared owner, the lease is then assigned to the new owner, a new lease is not created.

Shared owner leases are complex documents. You will have had the chance to read it before signing and your solicitor should have explained the terms and responsibilities you have agreed to. Please check with your solicitor or legal representative if you're not sure about anything.

Rights and responsibilities

The lease states your rights and responsibilities as the leaseholder, and our rights and responsibilities as your landlord. It contains many legal terms and expressions so we’ve summarised the main points below. This is for guidance only and you must always refer to your lease for comprehensive details.

  • Your rights and responsibilities

    Here are some of your main rights and responsibilities as a shared owner. You'll find a full list in your lease document.

    You agree to:

    • pay your rent on time
    • pay the service charge (if applicable) on time
    • contribute towards costs of major works to communal areas if required
    • keep your home and garden in a good state of repair and carry out your own repairs
    • not do anything which may adversely affect our buildings insurance policy
    • arrange your own contents insurance
    • ask our permission if you want to carry out any alterations or additions, except usual decoration, to your home (find out more about this in the repairs and maintenance section)
    • not sell your home without our prior written permission
    • allow us, with prior notice, to inspect the condition of your home
    • not cause a nuisance or annoyance to neighbours
    • not park anything other than a car or small van in your parking space.

    Please note: there are more clauses in your lease and you should get your solicitor or legal representative to go through it with you.

  • Our rights and responsibilites

    We agree to:

    • allow you to live in your home without interference (unless you breach the terms and conditions of the lease)
    • insure the building (but not its contents)
    • not sell our interest in your home without your consent
    • maintain communal areas of the estate.

    Please note: there are more clauses in your lease and you should get your solicitor or legal representative to go through it with you.

  • Check with your legal representative

    Please note that there are more clauses in your lease and you should get your solicitor or legal representative to check it with you if you are not sure about anything.

    You can also get advice from the Leasehold Advisory Service, an independent, free advice service for leaseholders.

Subletting and lodgers

  • Can I sublet?

    No. We don’t allow subletting of a shared ownership lease, under any circumstances, on the grounds that this:

    • would affect the terms and conditions on which the mortgage has been secured
    • would be contrary to funding regulations on which we raised capital to make the property available
    • may not adhere to the ethos of our allocations policy.
  • Can I have lodgers?

    Yes, shared owners have the legal right to take in a lodger, but you must gain our permission first.

    Please get in touch via myhomeonline, by email or call 0300 1234 009.

    You may, depending on the terms of your lease, also need the permission of your mortgage lender.

    However, legally you mustn’t allow your home to become overcrowded, so you can only take in a lodger if you have the room. Find out more about overcrowding.

Extending, amending and transferring

  • Extending your lease

    If you're thinking of extending your lease, please get in touch by email or on 0300 1234 009 and we can explain the process.

    We'd also recommend that you get independent legal advice before proceeding with a lease extension.

  • Succession (inheriting a lease)

    In the sad situation that a home owner dies, please get in touch with as soon as possible, so that we can explain the options available and help you sort things out.

    You can contact us by email or on 0300 1234 009.

    We'd also recommend that you get independent legal advice before proceeding with a lease succession.

  • Transferring your lease into sole/joint names

    We understand that situations change over time and this may require amendments to your lease.

    For example, if you have a joint lease, but divorce or separate from your partner, your lease will need to be amended.
    If this happens, you should get independent legal advice.

    If you wish to add, or remove, a person to your lease, you must inform us and agree with any mortgage lender which partner is to take over the property. If you cannot agree, a court will make a ruling on who should stay or order the property to be sold.

    If you're re-mortgaging to take on the lease in your name, we'll also need to approve your new mortgage.

  • Changes by us

    You must be consulted about any changes that we want to make to your lease.

    Generally, no changes can be made without your permission. You have the right to stay in your home until the end of your lease, as long as you keep to the conditions set out in it and pay all the charges due.

  • Lease forfeiture (we terminate your lease)

    We will make every effort to help you stay in your home.

    But if you breach your lease or knowingly made a false statement when you applied for the property, we can apply to the courts to have your home taken from you. This is known as lease forfeiture.


  • Can I have a pet?

    If you'd like to keep a pet in your home:

    • Please check the conditions of your lease first.
    • You must ask our permission. The easiest way to do this is to complete a pet request form.
    • Once we've received your request, a member of the housing team will get in touch with you.

    If you do have a pet, or have visitors with pets, it's your responsibility to make sure that they are supervised, kept under control and do not cause nuisance or annoyance to neighbours.

    Send us a pet request form

  • What if I lose my house keys?

    Sorry, we don’t keep a spare set of keys.

    If you lose them, it‘s your responsibility to replace them and pay for any lock changes. Please see the buildings insurance policy wording for more details on this.

  • Can I get another copy of my lease?

    If you need a copy of your lease, please get in touch with your housing officer by email or call 0300 1324 009.

    If we don't have a copy of your lease in house, there may be an administration fee to cover the costs of applying for a copy.

    Alternatively, your mortgage lender or solicitor may hold a copy of your lease.

  • What if I have a complaint?

    If you're not happy with our service, or if you've received an excellent service, or have a suggestion please let us know.

    Compliments and complaints >

  • Get in touch

    If you'd like any further information or to talk to one of the team, please get in touch:

    Online: My Home Online
    Call: 0300 1234 009

Please note: the information on these shared owner pages is for guidance only. You should always refer to your lease for comprehensive information and get legal advice where necessary.