High Peak MP Ruth George has stood up in Parliament and called on the government to say when the ban of new leasehold homes would be brought in.
Leasehold is a method of owning property, usually a flat, for a fixed term but not the land on which it stands. It is really a long-term tenancy giving a right to live in the property for a set number of years the ‘term’ in return for payment of a lump sum but can be bought and sold throughout that period.
Opening up the debate in the House of Commons she asked what timetable is the government bringing forward to prevent the sale of new houses by leasehold.
Nigel Adams Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Housing, Communities and Local Government said: “The Government cannot see any good reason for new-build leasehold houses other than in exceptional circumstances. Earlier this month the Secretary of State announced that no new Government money will fund them. We intend to consult over the summer on how a ban on new leasehold houses will be implemented.”
However fighting for the people in High Peak Mrs George replied and said: “Last year the then secretary of state promised by the summer the government would make concrete proposals for banning the sale of neHigh Peak w lease hold homes yet they are still being sold in my constituency.
“The buyers thereof are unable to sell their homes and they are also unable to afford to buy out the free hold at the extortionate rates being demanded by the freeholders. How and when will the government fix this?”
Mr Adams explained: “Of course she raises a very important point that’s why we are acting, that’s why we are introducing legislation to stop the development of new build lease hold houses and will also restrict ground rent to a peppercorn and the other thing we are planning to do also is fix the loophole in law to increase transparency.”
Ruth George is currently working with residents of Beckets Brow, and Octavia Row in Chapel-en-le-Frith, where some of the new build homes have been sold as leaseholder properties.
Leaseholders have the legal right to buy the freehold of their property after two years sometimes freehold owners will offer them to leaseholders before the two-year qualifying period has passed but she says this is not the case for some residents in Chapel.