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Will's year in review

Head of Leasehold & Estate Management, Will Parrick suggests next year more regulation could fix the supposedly broken system. 

Despite many decrying the system as ‘broken’, Leasehold is an ever-increasing part of our property landscape. In 2016, 46% of new-build transactions nationwide were leasehold. One only has to look around Colchester and note the numerous blocks of flats springing up in the many new developments to see that 2017 will probably provide us with similar statistics. That said, the big story in 2017 was the Government’s proposal to ban the sale of new-build leasehold houses. For us in the South this will be unlikely to have much of an impact since leasehold houses are relatively rare, being far more prevalent in the North of the UK. 

With renewed interest in the sector sparked by the leasehold houses and ground rent controversy, 2017 saw the Government run a consultation on various leasehold issues. This led to the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government announcing at The Association of Residential Managing Agents (ARMA) Conference that he intends to ‘clamp down’ on rogue managing agents (although he reassured us ARMA members that we were not the ones he was talking about, of course).  The result of this is potentially the beginning of a real shake-up in the leasehold sector. The likelihood is 2018 will see more regulation, which should be welcomed by practitioners and customers alike. Hopefully we will see a more level playing field for agents with improved consumer protection in place. Maybe this could even bring about a fix to the allegedly broken system.

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