Leading organisations from the property sector have written to housing secretary Michael Gove imploring him to implement his government’s plans to reform the leasehold system which were announced more than a year ago.
The interest groups represented include conveyancers, deposit protection providers, mortgage lenders, surveyors, estate agents and tech firms.
All are asking Gove to bring into law the measures already announced or supported by the government over the last two to three years, including the Law Commission Reports on leasehold enfranchisement, sorting out ‘right to manage’ and Commonhold, bringing in the much-expected Leasehold Reform Act, preventing leaseholders being ripped off by management firms.
“We are disappointed the government has yet to implement these measures given the exploitation continues and increases with every passing day,” the letter says.
“We would therefore urge you to include the already-announced measures in future legislative plans as soon as possible to avoid further blighting of leasehold and so-called ‘fleecehold’ managed leasehold.”
Beth Rudolf (pictured), Director of Delivery at the Conveyancing Association, says: “We are simply calling on the Government to fulfil its obligations in this area.
“By doing this we can ensure leaseholders can set in motion parts of the property-owning democracy that are simply not open to many of them, such as selling their properties or securing a mortgage.
Time for action
Sean Hooker, (pictured) Head of Redress at the Property Redress Scheme, adds: “This is the time for Government action to restore the confidence of leaseholders, who currently feel like second-class citizens in the property world.”
“The redress schemes deal with the frustrations of leaseholders on a daily basis but are often powerless to help. The balance of power must shift back towards the consumer.
“The measures in the proposals will create a robust framework of rights and remedies and restore balance and fairness to the system that has been eroded as the market has evolved and changed, since the existing laws were introduced.”