Leasehold Solutions has welcomed the publication of the Law Commission’s terms of reference for its Residential Leasehold Law Reform project, but warned that it is likely to be many years before legislative reforms are brought before Parliament.
The Law Commission document sets out the terms for a wide-ranging review of leasehold law. In particular, the Commission has announced its intention to:
- Look at ways to reduce the price paid by existing and future leaseholders when enfranchising
- Make it easier, quicker and more cost effective for leaseholders to enfranchise
- Produce options for a simpler, clearer and consistent valuation methodology
Louie Burns, managing director of Leasehold Solutions, said: “We welcome any announcement that promises to bring about meaningful reform of the leasehold system, but we are concerned that the scope of the Law Commission’s review is based on vague platitudes, such as ‘will consider’, ‘will seek to’ and ‘will review’.
“Ultimately there is no guarantee that the reforms will deliver the seismic changes needed to bring meaningful improvements to the leasehold system, nor that the government will actually implement the Commission’s recommendations when they are published.
“We also worry that many leaseholders will now not take action to remedy the issues created by their falling leases, while they await fresh legislation from government. In reality it will be several years before the Law Commission’s report is published, and even longer until the government is in a position to propose legislation to tackle the many problems with the leasehold system.”
The project was announced in the Law Commission’s Thirteenth Programme of Law Reform and in the Government’s response to its consultation on Tackling unfair practices in the leasehold market.
The Law Commission has committed to publishing its solutions for leasehold houses before Parliament’s summer recess this year, with the final report expected in 2019.