As our Petition to Abolish Leasehold in the UK reaches over 27,500, the National Leasehold Campaign (NLC) have unveiled its Mayday Pledge to bring justice for the more than six million Brits trapped in what is widely tipped to be the next mis-selling scandal.
As a not-for-profit organisation we have devised different pledges for developers, freeholders and local authorities to sign up to in the wake of the industries own pledge announced in March, which has been described by the NLC as being ‘as little as they think they can get away with’
“We have now created the NLC Mayday Pledge where we are calling on developers, freeholders and local authorities to put their money where their mouth is. If they are truly concerned with acting in an ethical and transparent way, which their track record totally belies, then they will sign and actively embrace the changes needed. They cannot be trusted to regulate themselves and their pledge does not go far enough.”
- Campaign for the abolition of leasehold in England and Wales.
- Campaign for Commonhold to be mandatory.
- Campaign for full redress for those trapped in the Leasehold Scandal including a mis-selling inquiry.
- Campaign for the adoption of the recommendations recently published in the Housing, Communities and Local Government Select Committee report on Leasehold Reform and ensure these are included in all political party manifestos.
- Continue to support MHCLG on leasehold reform.
- Continue to support the Law Commission on their programme of leasehold reform.
- Support the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on leasehold reform, of which the charity Leasehold Knowledge Partnership is the secretariat and organizes all meetings.
- Raise awareness of leasehold (both flats & houses), fleecehold and non-adoption of public services.
- Ensure leaseholders avoid the pitfalls of informal lease extensions and purchase of freehold.
It’s time for Government to take a much stronger stance and avoid being taken in like Little Red Riding Hood as the leasehold wolves dress up like Granny.
This is what we believe the public pledge signed by freeholders should be:
We, the undersigned freeholders, pledge to:
1. Identify all leaseholders with leases which contain a clause whereby ground rent doubles or increases with RPI, contact leaseholders to inform them and offer them the option to purchase their freehold at the verbally agreed price discussed when the property was reserved or convert ground rent in line with the recommendations of the Commons Select Committee (ground rent should not exceed £250 pa and should not increase over time).
2. Repeat this offer when contacting a leaseholder or, if this is not always appropriate, ensure this offer is communicated clearly and displayed in a public open forum (for example, a website or communal notice board etc).
3. Should a leaseholder accept to change a doubling clause the Leaseholders will not incur any fees to alter.
4. Assist any leaseholder who approaches us to request clauses be reviewed (or any other matter regarding their lease), even if they have not previously taken up an offer of variation at no cost to the leaseholder.
5. Abolish permission fees for home alterations, remortgages, etc.
6. Ensure the process for leaseholders to acquire the freehold on their home or extend the terms of the lease is uncomplicated, transparent and fair.
7. Support leaseholders who wish to take over the collective management of their homes and any communal areas in excess of the currently inadequate leaseholder rights enshrined in legislation.
8. Have in place a complaints process that is transparent and fair, ensuring that complaints are heard and dealt with, and redress given quickly.
9. Have in place an appropriate redress scheme, so leaseholders have assurance that complaints will be heard.
This is what we believe the public pledge signed by Developers should be:
We, the undersigned developers, pledge to:
1. Not to build any new leasehold houses.
2. Ensure that shared buildings are commonhold not leasehold.
3. Work with Local Authorities to ensure that common areas and public services are adopted.
4. Abolish permission fees for home alterations, remortgages, etc.
5. Develop and manage a comprehensive Code of Practice which establishes the highest ethical and operational standards for the building and sale of new properties, including a Key Features document at the point of sale and mandating full disclosure of all charges.
6. Implement a redress scheme to provide full financial redress for the thousands of customers who were not fully informed when they bought leasehold properties from us.
7. Immediately cease to recommend professionals to assist with the purchase of a new home (conveyancing solicitors, mortgage advisors, etc.)
8. Immediately cease selling any freeholds currently held by us to any third party investor and offer them to existing leaseholders at the verbally agreed price discussed when the property was reserved or convert ground rent in line with the recommendations of the Commons Select Committee (ground rent should not exceed £250 pa and should not increase over time).
9. Buy back the freeholds sold onto third parties and sell them back to the leaseholder at the price verbally agreed at the point of sale.
This is what we believe the public pledge signed by Local Authority’s should be:
We, the undersigned Local Authorities pledge to:
1. Support leaseholders who are trapped in the Leasehold Scandal.
2. Support any legal action that leaseholders may undertake in relation to mis-selling.
3. Make it clear to developers that Local Authorities will not work with developers who continue to exploit leaseholders.
4. Support the adoption of common areas and public services.
5. Support and promote future Commonhold developments.
Please support our pledge.
” One has a moral responsibility to disobey unjust laws” – Martin Luther King Jr.