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The Government has recently introduced this new type of title which is intended to replace leasehold for new flat developments. It is called ‘strata title’ in Australia and Canada, and there will be no time limit on the ownership. Of course all the commonholders still share the maintenance and repair obligations in common. The aim is effectively to merge freehold and leasehold into one simplified package.

Although the provision was included in the legislation for existing leasehold flats to become commonhold, the procedures for obtaining consent of all the existing leaseholders are extremely complicated. A few small schemes have looked at the idea but few if any have succeeded. Effectively, commonholds will be the usual tile for new flats and apartments. That said, many lawyers believe that there is little wrong with a well drawn leasehold and may advise their client to avoid the untried and untested commonhold approach.

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