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The Leasehold and Freehold Reform Act has now become law, bringing significant changes for freehold property owners and house builders.  

Under the new reforms, leaseholders no longer need to wait two years to buy or extend their lease. If they choose to extend, the standard lease extension term is now increased to 990 years for both houses and flats, compared to the previous 50 years for houses and 90 years for flats. These changes aim to provide leaseholders with greater security in their homes.  

Additionally, the sale of new leasehold homes is now banned, ensuring that, except in exceptional cases, all new houses in England and Wales will be freehold from the outset.  

Freeholders and managing agents must now issue bills in a standardized format to enhance transparency of charges. Furthermore, it will be easier and more affordable for leaseholders to take over the management of their buildings.  

The government also requires that freeholders, who manage their own buildings, must join a redress scheme, a requirement that was already in place for managing agents.  

For more information on the changes please see the following government guidance.