Home ownership in the UK comes in two distinct forms: leasehold and freehold. And it's leasehold ownership that has been in the news a lot lately, with homeowners sometimes facing unfair terms.
So what's the difference? With a freehold, you own the land on which the property is built, while with a leasehold you only own the property itself and for a fixed term. With a leasehold, there may be a host of other costs to account for, such as ground rent to the freeholder (also known as the landlord) or towards maintenance bills for the property.
Generally, leasehold has been the ownership structure when you buy a flat, apartment or maisonette, in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, with most houses sold on a freehold basis.