The Law Commission’s report into exit fees last week was a disappointment for those seeking an invigorated retirement housing market. Rather than pursue the defunct OFT inquiries, which asked what services exit fees on sale or sublet actually pay for, the Law Commission has given them carte blanche provided they are ‘transparent’.
This means McCarthy and Stone and Churchill, which ended their exit fees when the OFT inquiry began, can now reintroduce them.
The Law Commission has bent over backwards to assist unproven retirement housing business models that recoup their profit at the end of an occupancy – ie on resale – rather than at the start. When was that its purpose?
The Sunday Times then published a family’s account of an Audley Retirement resale where they had to pay £48,000 in far from transparent exit fees (below).
We would like to appeal to housebuilder whistleblowers to step forward, who were either employed in the past – or are still employed – by developers caught up in the onerous ground rent scandal. We wish to unravel: how onerous ground rent terms became policy among major housebuilders, and the origins of the industry-wide enthusiasm for […]
Louie Burns, of Leasehold Solutions, here gives his assessment of the leasehold houses scandal and advice on what you can do about it. LKP unhesitatingly recommends that leasehold house owners contact Louie Burns, who has a proven track record of working with leaseholders to resolve their problems. He speaks frequently at sector events and is […]
The Sunday Times yesterday published a powerful article by Harriet Meyer revealing how her family spent £48,160 in fees on selling at Audley Retirement flat. Audley Retirement is one of the upmarket providers in the sector, which Carlex has long argued has even greater exploitative practices at the higher end than the lower. Harriet’s grandparents […]
The Daily Mail has “revealed” that Will Astor, Samantha Cameron’s half-brother, is a major investor in the leasehold game. It claims that that the 38-year-old’s Long Harbour fund has the freeholds of 160,000 homes “on behalf of institutional investors”. LKP very much doubts these investors are institutional, and draws attention to former Long Harbour billionaire […]
Is there any better – that is, worse – example of the pointlessness of government attempting to micro-manage the housing market than the Help To Buy scheme? It now emerges that just over half those who have received taxpayers’ money to help them buy a home under a government scheme did not need it, according […]
Leasehold house owners have been brushed aside by ground rent investment groups when they ask about buying the freeholds to their homes. Most failed to inform leaseholders of their statutory rights to buying the freehold under the 1967 Leasehold Reform Act. But now several of them have changed the wording on their websites following the […]
Sajid Javid has threatened to clamp down on the ‘feudal’ racket of housebuilders building leasehold homes with onerous ground rents. The Secretary of State at DCLG is planning to use the Help To Buy scheme as leverage, which LKP has been urging since October when it began the campaign against leasehold houses. Of course, plenty […]
It is not often we produce good news on the ground rent front, but here is an example. Janine Hartley, a leaseholder with the Hyde Group housing association, was appalled to receive a ground rent demand of £600, and contacted LKP. She had been paying £50, but she had extended the lease through the statutory […]
So far, ministers are showing no sign of a wobble in criticising housebuilders for fleecing their customers with leasehold houses. “Both the Secretary of State Sajid Javid MP and the Housing Minister Gavin Barwell MP have been looking closely at the issue of leasehold houses and escalating ground rents,” the DCLG tells a leaseholder […]
The Department of Communities and Local Government has rejected a second complaint about Roger Southam being the chairman of the Leasehold Advisory Service. “Mr Southam has not done anything in his private business that impinges upon his role as Chair of LEASE,” the DCLG tells the National Leasehold Campaign Facebook group. The group represents many […]