POSTCODE LOTTERY OF ESTATE MANAGEMENT FEES

Many ‘new build’ estates now consist of mixed tenures of Leasehold & Freehold. One clearly being a more attractive purchase than the other. We also have a situation where some developments are adopted by the council upon completion and others are not. Therefore some pay full council tax and an estate maintenance charge, others just pay council tax. Is this fair? Some describe it as “paying council tax twice’.

It really is a postcode lottery as Chris & Paul have illustrated so well in this video below.

This affects both Leasehold estates AND Freehold estates.

Whats concerning is some councils appear to be entering into the FLEECEHOLD RACKET as identified in this article by Leasehold Knowledge Partnership

“Developers and councils have immediately seen the advantage of this: councils save money by not doing the job that they have to do in the rest of the borough; developers have created yet another investment asset class – the management contracts – that can be traded on”

The umbrella term ‘FLEECEHOLD’ was created by NLC administrator Joy Dickinson to describe numerous ways Developers, Freeholders and Management Companies use our homes as an endless income stream

People have had enough of these practices. From Leasehold estates to Freehold estates retaining an income from our homes has to stop. We love seeing people uniting together in numerous ways to fight the injustices of the “new build’ housing models.

Please join the Home Owners Rights Network and they are also on Facebook (Click Here)

This video below has been created by Chris & Paul to illustrate how unfair estate charges on new housing estates are. Please share this video far and wide.

Join the their Facebook group Here

SUBSCRIBE TO THEIR YOU TUBE CHANNEL AS THERE WILL BE MORE VIDEOS COMING SOON.

click here to subscribe

NLC LAUNCH MASS EMAIL EVENT – “Return our freeholds to their rightful owners”

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MASS EMAIL EVENT – EXTENDED FOR 1 WEEK.

WE ARE HAVING AN IMPACT LETS CARRY ON

The NLC have launched an event to email ALL developers and request they return our freeholds ‘FREE OF CHARGE’ and ‘free from fee paying covenants & permission fees’ to their rightful owners.

Katie Kendrick states

” Developers can do the right thing but for far too long they choose not too. We are urging all leaseholders to make the reasonable request to their developers to return our freeholds to their rightful owners ahead of legislative changes. This morally is the ‘right thing to do’. It’s disappointing unless threatened with court action (as in the Cardiff case) they fail to act responsibly.

It really is a David V’s Goliath battle”

This event was launched on Facebook this morning.

FACEBOOK EVENT HERE

Leaseholders are rightly riled up about the news of a Persimmon estate in Cardiff being given their freeholds ‘FREE OF CHARGE’. Many reporting experiencing very similar situations to the Cardiff residents who are also members of the NLC

We are encouraging you to email the CEO of the developer you purchased from and ask them to follow the lead of Persimmon Homes Ltd in the Cardiff case

It’s great to see leaseholders uniting together throughout the country to fight back. Enough is enough.
This case is not an isolated case. We are not going to back down on this.

https://www.thisismoney.co.uk/money/markets/article-7391097/Persimmon-pressure-cancel-leasehold-deals.html

We MUST keep the pressure on developers. We used to carry out mass email events in the early days of the campaign and they were really effective.

We have written a template you can use (if you wish). We urge you all to get your neighbours to ALL send individual emails too. The more the better.

Please send your email to

  • CEO of developer
  • Your MP
  • Leasehold Knowledge Partnership (LKP) – sok@leaseholdknowledge.com
  • Secretary Of State For Housing Robert Jenrick
    Robert.jenrick@communities.gov.uk
  • Esther Mcvey – Housing Minister – Esther.mcvey.mp@parliament.uk
  • Your local Council & Councillor

Template letter can be found here below. Please amend to suit your situation.

Dear

On behalf of *name of estate* we would like to request you return all leaseholders their full freehold titles. Where our freeholds have been sold on to institutional investor’s without offering them to us first, we urge you to buy them back and return them to us. I’m sure you are aware of the recent Cardiff Council V’s Persimmon Homes Ltd case which settled out of court.

https://www.thisismoney.co.uk/money/markets/article-7391097/Persimmon-pressure-cancel-leasehold-deals.html

It is widely accepted that our homes should never have been Leasehold in the first place, you unnecessarily created a second asset on our homes by creating a lease. Nearly every resident who requested to buy the freehold at the point of sale were told the freehold could only be bought after 2 years, unaware that your intention was to sell the freehold onto investors before we were able to purchase the freehold. This is not acceptable. This is not an isolated case, almost everyone was told the same thing at the point of sale, this was systematic, and the responsibility is with you. As the CEO/Director you have a duty to your customers to correct the mistake of the recent past and understand this was selling a product to your customers without being totally open, honest and transparent with them.

Residents would not have proceeded with the purchase had you been open and transparent with your intentions. This crucial information was withheld from us at the point of sale which consequently prevented us from making an informed decision.

In relation to the above case Persimmon accepted they “could have communicated better or more clearly”. They went onto state “Ensuring that customer satisfaction, as part of our Persimmon Pledge, sits at the heart of our business and so when things do not go as planned, we want to do our best to put things right. As a gesture of goodwill, we have decided to provide all leasehold owners with their freehold title, without any cost”

We urge you, ahead of government legislative changes to ‘Do the right thing’ This is your opportunity to ‘Put things right’ and return to us our Freeholds (free also of fee payment covenants)

We request that you return to all leaseholders the freehold of their property. This should apply whether it was a first time buyer or subsequent buyer of the property.

We look forward to your response.


Here are a few email addresses for the CEO’s

Bellway – CEO Jason Honeyman Jason.honeyman@bellway.co.uk

Persimmon – CEO David Jenkinson

David.jenkinson@persimmonhomes.com

Barratt -CEO David Thomas David.thomas@barrattplc.co.uk
Linden Homes – CEO Grahma Prothero graham.prothero@gallifordtry.co.uk
Morris –CEO Mike Gaskell mgaskell@morrishomes.co.uk
Redrow – CEO John Tutte john.tutte@redrow.co.uk

Taylor Wimpey peter.redfern@taylorwimpey.com

Alternatively if you can’t find your CEO’s email address please SEARCH HERE

Or search on this website https://www.ceoemail.com

CLICK ON HERE TO DOWNLOAD FLAT TEMPLATE

The NLC helped to expose the out-of-court settlement over alleged mis-selling.

The heat🔥 was turned up this weekend as the ‘Mail On Sunday’ Published an excellent article putting pressure on Persimmon to “Cancel ALL leasehold deals” following an out of court settlement offered to a Cardiff estate.

“Persimmon under pressure to cancel all leasehold deals as climbdown by builder gives homeowners hope”

The National Leasehold Campaign passed this story to the ‘Mail On Sunday’ as we believe the Cardiff Council V’s Persimmon Homes Ltd is of National Interest.

The NLC have been aware of this case for some time as we are sure many developers were also watching this case with interest. I’m sure ALL developers gave a sigh of relief that the case was dropped before court.

It really is a shame Cardiff Council didn’t have the funds to pursue this case.

The letter Cardiff residents received from Persimmon stated

“We have also been in discussion with Cardiff County Council who have been passing on those concerns to us, on behalf of a number of residents.

Ensuring that customer satisfaction, as part of our Persimmon Pledge, sits at the heart of our business and so when things do not go as planned, we want to do our best to put things right”

Katie Kendrick (Founder of the NLC) gave the following statement

“The NLC are pleased that Persimmon have eventually done the right thing for these residents. However this is not an isolated case. Many other residents have experienced exactly the same throughout the country. We urge Persimmon to honour this for all other developments across the country who are currently trapped in the leasehold scandal.

This case is of significant national interest as thousands feel they have been miss sold their leasehold properties.
It is disappointing that this case is not being taken to court for a full hearing. It remains questionable if persimmon have offered the residents their freehold free of charge as ‘damage limitation’ as succeeding and winning this case against persimmon would have set a legal precedence for many other estates to follow. This case proves they can put things right if they want to, but developers choose not to.

The NLC urge all other developers to also ‘put things right’ and return our freeholds to us free of charge.

We hope the CMA consider this case in their investigation into potential miss selling and unfair contract terms”


This is a ‘DAVID V’S GOLIATH’ battle.

This news has certainly awaken leaseholders on a national level. Leaseholder are rightly riled up and angry. Many asking “what does this mean for us?”

There is a glimmer of hope as this illustrates developers can do the right thing when pushed to do so by the right authorities.

Leaseholders do not have the endless millions of pounds that developers & freeholders have to fight this. We don’t have the clever lawyers, accountants and expensive PR companies advising us; But what we do have is the truth. We have each other and through the movement of the NLC and support of the Leasehold Knowledge Partnership (LKP) we are proud to see leaseholders fighting back.

WHAT CAN YOU DO?

It’s time to take action. Leaseholder’s must work together.

  • Work together with your neighbours. Please ensure your neighbours are aware. Encourage them to join with you and carry out the steps below. The more people that keep the pressure on the better.
  • Contact your local press. Especially if you are living in a Persimmon property. Now is a perfect time to “Strike while the irons hot”. We are happy to be CC’d into any press correspondence if they want a comment from us.(nationalleaseholdcampaign@gmail.com)
  • Contact your local Council. Share the ‘Cardiff Council’s’ actions with them and ask them to do the same on your behalf.
  • Write to your developers CEO. Request they assign the freehold title to their rightful owner.
  • Contact both National Trading Standards & your Local Trading Standards Anyone who was not advised of all matters that would have materially affected their decision to view or purchase the property are encouraged to register a complaint.

Please ensure your complaints are logged via the Consumer Service Helpline.

The reason being that logging them this way means that they go onto the National Trading Standards database which is searchable by all Local Trading Standards.

If consumers simply complain to their local trading standards it doesn’t always get on the database but by doing it through the Consumer Service Helpline it goes on the national database and is then sent to the appropriate Local Trading Standards (LTS)

The benefit of it going on the National database is that LTS can then see if there are pockets of complaints in their region and are therefore more likely to prioritise an investigation. Currently if they can only see one complaint they will prioritise other complaints.

Please contact them via email and keep a copy of their responses by clicking the following link:

https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/consumer/get-more-help/report-to-trading-standards/
Point to note is National Trading Standards cannot deal with a complaint that is over 3 years old, however we do think even these are worth lodging so that they get a view of the number of issues being caused and get a feeling of the magnitude of the problem.

Don’t forget to reference the Persimmon Article in your correspondence with Trading Standards.


Encourage your neighbours to join the NLC. Together we are stronger.

#PEOPLEPOWER

LEASEHOLDERS UNITED TO RAISE THE FUNDS NEEDED IN LESS THAN 72 HOURS TO SEND THE NLC TO THE ‘WOMEN IN HOUSING AWARDS 2019’

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Once again the strength of leaseholders was felt as we rallied around to raise the funds to send the NLC team to this years ‘Women In Housing Awards 2019’

We have made the short-list for 3 categories :

  1. Team of the year.
  2. Improving the lives of Women or Communities.
  3. Marketing or Communication initiative.

We are so proud to be able to attend this event to represent the 14,500 members of the National Leasehold Campaign.

If you would like to make a donation it’s not too late, you can do so by

CLICKING HERE

Any excess funds raised will be transferred to the NLC Bank Account so we can continue to fund the campaign to end the Leasehold Scandal.

A massive thank you to everyone who has donated so far. We couldn’t have done it without you. Knowing that you are all supporting us in numerous ways gives us the strength to continue this David V’s Goliath Battle.

#PEOPLEPOWER

Many Thanks for your support.

NLC Team

CONSULTATION ON ‘ENDING THE SCANDAL’ COMPLETE CONSULTATION NOW

‘ENDING THE SCANDAL’- Labour’s new deal for leaseholders

RESPOND NOW!

Labour’s report published on 10th July set out plans to end leasehold ownership.

Labours proposals have been sent out for consultation for views from leaseholders.

Labour’s shadow housing secretary, John Healey MP said “This consultation document sets out the next Labour government’s ambition to end the broken leasehold model for good”

The National Leasehold Campaign encourages ALL Leaseholders to participate in this consultation regardless of political views. It is widely accepted that the Leasehold Scandal is a Cross-party issue with great Cross-party support.

Please Email your answers to the consultation questions below to leaseholdconsultation@labour.org.uk

CLOSING 30th September 2019

Q1 Should there be any exemptions to the prohibition on new private leasehold properties, and if so what should they be?

Q2 What changes need to be made to commonhold to ensure it can become the default tenure for new flats?

Q3 Do you agree with our proposals to restrict ground rents to zero, or a peppercorn, for new build properties?

Q4 Do you agree with our proposal to set the maximum ground rent chargeable at 0.1% of property value, with a cap of £250 a year?

Q5 Do you agree with our proposed formula to allow leaseholders to buy the freehold to their home, or convert to commonhold?

Q6 What should we define as a ‘longer lease’ for the purposes of a new, simple formula for enfranchisement?

Q7 Do you agree that there should be a new route for redress for leaseholders suffering from unreasonable costs and conditions?

Q8 What types of covenants or administration fees should be permitted and what is a reasonable level to charge?

Q9 Do you agree with our proposals to abolish forfeiture on long leases?

Q10 What more could be done to give leaseholders more control over management of their buildings?

Q11 How can we best ensure effective management of commonhold or Right to Manage sites?

NLC reLEASE fund raising page to get us to the ‘Women In Housing Awards’ 2019

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NLC have made the Finalist in 3 Categories

 We are pleased to have made the finalist at this years

 “Women In Housing Awards 2019”

 

For us to attend this corporate event comes with a corporate price tag of almost £2500.  We run the NLC purly on donations and therefore have set up a specific fund to raise money for this event so Leaseholder’s can be represented.

 

Find our more about this event by going to our GoFundMe Page Click Here

 

https://www.gofundme.com/f/get-the-nlc-team-to-the-039women-in-housing-awards039?sharetype=teams&member=2630226&rcid=r01-156432087525-3a5c7bafd4944f71&pc=ot_co_campmgmt_w

CMA INVESTIGATION CLOSES TODAY !!

The Competition And Markets Authority Investigation into the potential breaches of consumer protection law in the leasehold housing market closes TODAY 12th July 2019.

The CMA have confirmed that we should send ONE email to the most relevant email box (e.g Ground Rents) but state that your email is also relevant to other email boxes (e.g. Permission Fees) where this applies.
Basic Information will help them including:

  • Location (where your leasehold property is, including estate name)
  • Developer (where known)
  • Year of Purchase
  • Lease Terms (ground rent amount, frequency and rate of increase)
  • Who your freeholder is now
  • Who your management company is

SALES STAFF:

  • What information were you told by the sales staff, both verbally and/or written – Please attach documented evidence if you have it – or say if you can provide it if required.
  • Do you feel you had ALL of the information to make an informed decision?
  • What information were you given verbally and/or documented about the fact the property was leasehold?
  • Were terms such as “virtually freehold” used?

MIS-SELLING

Email Misselling.leasehold@cma.gov.uk

  • You were not given enough information on the terms of your contract
  • The information you were given was difficult to understand
  • Were you given all of the information in order to make and informed decision to proceed with the purchase?
  • Were you told a price (verbally and/or written) of how much you could purchase your freehold for by sales staff? Has this changed?

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PERMISSION FEES

Ever had to pay a ‘permission fee’ to make home improvements to your leasehold property? 🏠

Email : Permissionfees.leasehold@cma.gov.uk

The CMA are investigating if people are being treated fairly, and want to hear your experiences.

  • Were you aware of permission fees when you purchased the property?
  • Have the permission fees changed if your freehold has been sold on?
  • Has the freeholder tried to retain permission fees in the TP1 document?

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SERVICE CHARGES

The CMA want your views on service charges for things like:

🔧 repairs to communal areas
🏢 building insurance
👨‍💼 building management

Email: Servicecharges.leasehold@cma.gov.uk

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GROUND RENTS

Do you pay ground rents charges to the owner of the land a property is built on?

Groundrents.leasehold@cma.gov.uk

  • Were you aware your ground rent increases?
  • What is your current ground rent? How does it increase? (RPI/Doubling)
  • Have you had issues re mortgaging due to ground rent terms?
  • Have you tried to sell your property but the ground rent has been an issue?
  • Any other issues with Ground rents please email
  • Did your ‘Report on Title’ you received from your solicitor clearly explain the ground rent terms and increases?

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The CMA are investigating potential mis-selling and unfair terms in the leasehold market.

It would also be helpful to CC in your MP to the email too.

Call for your views

If you wish to provide information to the CMA please use one or more of the following email addresses below:

In the heading of your email please indicate the address of the property about which you are getting in touch with the CMA and any other relevant material such as, should you be contacting us to make a complaint, the person against whom you wish to complain.

In your email please provide as much detail as you are comfortable with including timescales and dates, values and frequency of payments etc.

We would appreciate initial responses by 12 July.

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LEASEHOLD DEBATE ANNOUNCED FOR 11TH JULY – EMAIL YOUR MP NOW

This week the Government responded to Committee’s Leasehold reform report

This has triggered a debate in the Commons next Thursday to discuss the report.

Thursday 11th July in the Main Chamber
The debate is on the governments response to the excellent Select Committee report

We need you to :

a) Please write to your MP and remind them of the debate and urge them to attend to represent your interests.

b) If you have the time and can attend ask your MP if they can book you a seat in the public gallery.

c) Please make sure your MP is aware that they can ask LKP as the secretariat of the APPG for briefing notes. They need to email martin.boyd@leaseholdknowledge.com

This debate is your best opportunity for your MP to argue that more should be done to help you as existing leaseholders!!!

This is great news. Please take the time to email your MP. Lets flood their inboxes. More needs to be done for existing leaseholders, the battle is far from over.

If you don’t know your MP’s Email address they can be contacted by clicking here

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WORRIED ABOUT LEASEHOLD? – PLEASE TELL US – SURVEY EXTENDED 24 HRS – Closes Sunday 16th.

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CLOSING DATE EXTENDED 24HRS

PLEASE COMPLETE OUR SURVEY HERE

CLOSING TONIGHT 16 TH JUNE AT MIDNIGHT

“As many of you will know I am a nurse with a particular interest in Mental Health. I am deeply concerned what the human cost of this scandal is. Having spent hours speaking to so many leaseholders, and hearing so many heartbreaking stories the officials need to know this. Our homes should be our safe haven. For far too many it’s turned into a living nightmare. We really want to capture the impact the Leasehold Scandal is having on our lives. Please take a moment to complete our short survey. The results will help us to raise awareness of this scandal. Capturing the Human Impact is vital. Never give up fighting, we must stick together and I remain positive that if we do so we will get justice”.

Many Thanks for your continued support. Katie Kendrick

I would like to also thank the charity Silence of Suicide for helping us run this important survey.

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THE NATIONAL LEASEHOLD CAMPAIGN PLEDGE

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.”

We, the National Leasehold Campaign pledge to:

  1. Campaign for the abolition of leasehold in England and Wales.
  2. Campaign for Commonhold to be mandatory.
  3. Campaign for full redress for those trapped in the Leasehold Scandal including a mis-selling inquiry.
  4. 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.
  5. Continue to support MHCLG on leasehold reform.
  6. Continue to support the Law Commission on their programme of leasehold reform.
  7. Support the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on leasehold reform, of which the charity Leasehold Knowledge Partnership is the secretariat and organizes all meetings.
  8. Raise awareness of leasehold (both flats & houses), fleecehold and non-adoption of public services.
  9. 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.

PLedge

Please support our pledge.

Nationalleaseholdcampaign@gmail.com

 

” One has a moral responsibility to disobey unjust laws” – Martin Luther King Jr.