Private landlords who own apartments in cladding scandal-hit tower blocks are being offered substantial hope today as the government introduces its Building Safety Bill into parliament.
The much-anticipated bill will introduce radical changes to the way towers are built and managed from a safety perspective once it has received Royal Assent, most likely next year.
It will also tackle the thorny issue of compensation; the length of time claims can be made against developers will be increased from six to fifteen years and will be retrospective.
Also, freeholders will have to ‘explore’ alternative ways to meet the costs of remediation rather than passing them on automatically to leaseholders, and prove they have completed this process.
The bill will also create a Building Safety Regulator who will oversee a tougher supervision system of building safety.
This will include ensuring that any safety risks in new and existing residential towers of 18 metres and above are ‘effectively managed and resolved, taking cost into account’.
The bill is a response to Dame Judith Hackitt’s 2018 report into building safety following the Grenfell tragedy including.
This includes giving leaseholders a greater voice in how buildings are run, and more severe penalties for property managers and repair firms who put residents at risk.
“The new building safety regime will be a proportionate one, ensuring those buildings requiring remediation are brought to an acceptable standard of safety swiftly, and reassuring the vast majority of residents and leaseholders in those buildings that their homes are safe,” says Jenrick (pictured).
Hackitt says: “Residents and other stakeholders need to have their confidence in high rise buildings restored and those who undertake such projects must be held to account for delivering safe buildings.”