There is a confirmed route to remediation for all buildings over 11 metres in Wales, with ten major UK developers already lined up to complete fire safety works. Alongside new cladding valuation guidance expected from the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS), these plans demonstrate to valuers and lenders that essential work can be carried out at no cost to leaseholders.
A ban on new leasehold houses and limits on ground rent for new flats are contained in the long-promised and eagerly awaited Bill, and for existing leaseholders, selling should be made quicker and easier.
A public consultation has opened on proposals to cap ground rents in England and Wales as the UK Government begins its latest action to reform the sector. Legislation is already in place in the Ground Rent Act 2022 to ensure that new residential leases are restricted to a peppercorn ground rent, and this new proposal sets out options to extend this protection to existing leaseholders.
Five multi-occupancy building insurance providers have agreed to act on concerns about the value and transparency of commission and commission sharing practices. They have promised to help reduce costs and improve disclosure for residential leaseholders in buildings with fire safety issues.
School closures made headlines over the summer of 2023, but these are not the only buildings that could be affected by structural issues because of old or badly maintained materials. Property agents need to understand key facts relating to domestic and commercial buildings, especially those who deal with leaseholds.
The UK Government has outlined its priorities for the months ahead at the State Opening of Parliament which includes a ban on new leasehold houses in England and Wales and the delivery of the much-discussed Renter’s (Reform) Bill.
Minister of State (Housing and Planning) Rachel Maclean, MP, has confirmed that plans to phase out leasehold will be part of the King’s Speech on 7 November 2023. The Bill is expected to ban leaseholds for houses, but not new flats.
The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has confirmed new measures to reform the multi-occupancy buildings insurance market, coming into effect on 31 December 2023, will force firms to act in the best interests of leaseholders. In addition, the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC) has stated it will act to ban the payment or sharing of insurance commissions with property managing agents, landlords and freeholders.
The Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC) has published updated guidance explaining the information required to complete the Leaseholder Deed of Certificate (LDoC), and what information landlords in England must provide in the Landlord’s Certificate from 5 August 2023.
Following initial resistance from the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC) in the House of Lords to an amendment in the Levelling Up and Regeneration Bill designed to close loopholes that prevent leaseholders unfairly bearing the cost of historic building safety defects, Propertymark has written to Baroness Scott of Bybrook OBE, Parliamentary Undersecretary of State at DLUHC to ask why this solution is not being considered by the UK Government.
The Cladding Safety Scheme (CSS) has opened for all buildings in England over 11 meters and 11-18m in the Greater London authority area. However, Propertymark remains concerned there are still too many ways leaseholders can end up bearing the cost of work they should not be responsible for.
It's been five years since Propertymark started campaigning for leasehold reform and our latest report: Leasehold 2023: Has Anything Changed? shows that our members are still concerned and experiencing difficulties with a number of facets relating to leasehold law.
In 2018 Propertymark published a report titled 'Leasehold: A Life Sentence?' Based on the findings of that report, we helped to drive legislative change that has so far culminated in the Leasehold Reform (Ground Rent) Act 2022. Following this change, we investigated whether anything had changed in the world of leasehold.
Since the Grenfell Tower fire, the UK Government has been working towards a range of regulations to ensure that current and new buildings over 11m tall are safer and less likely to experience a fire on that scale. This led to the introduction of the Building Safety Act 2022 which included details on protections for leaseholders so they would not have to cover the costs of any works to retrofit unsafe buildings.
An updated Leasehold Property Enquiries (LPE1) form has been released by the Home Buying and Selling Group (HBSG) which will unlock the potential of digital conveyancing.
After meeting campaigners and The Earl of Lytton, Propertymark backs calls for greater leaseholder protections as the Levelling Up and Regeneration Bill proceeds through Parliament.