There are about 4,000 Warner-style flats in Waltham Forest and until 2002 were all managed by the Warner Estate. Built roughly between 1910 and the 1930s, they are purpose-built flats arranged in a two-storey terraced row with double front doors and a split back garden with each flat owning half. For leasehold purposes a building is two flats. This means that if both residents want to buy the freehold, they can as they make up more than 50% of the building occupants.
The Ex Warner Project is a fantastic resource for the oral histories and photos.
In 2002 the Warner estate was sold and split up between Circle 33, Final Brief and various other commercial freeholders. The portfolio is often passed between companies within Final Brief such as CG Thirteen and FIT Nominees, presumably for tax reasons. A leaseholder normally gets first refusal when the freehold is sold – except when the sale is between ‘child’ companies within a parent company. Most freeholders employ managing agents to deal with the day to day admin and most Warner properties are managed by either Freehold Managers, Circle Housing Group or Waltham Forest Housing.
Most Warner leases are self maintaining. In other words, each leaseholder is expected to contribute 50% of any ongoing costs. This is somewhat unusual as most managing agents are accustomed to sending out service charges bills and some Warner residents have mistakenly received bills for roof repairs. If in doubt, check your lease. If (like most) it’s unreadable, send a copy to Lease Advice whose solicitors provide free advice.