Archives: Real Estate (UK)

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Update on Small Scale Developments

Following on from our posting about the removal of the exemption of small scale developments from affordable housing contributions, please note that the Court of Appeal reversed the High Court’s decision. The Court of Appeal has given legal effect to the Government’s intended policy and that now means that: contributions should not be sought from … Continue Reading

Recovering Possession of Abandoned Residential Property

The headline news from the Housing and Planning Act 2016 (the ‘Housing and Planning Act’) makes it look as though there is a good new solution to enable residential landlords to get their property back in their control when it has been abandoned.  In practice it contains a number of provisions that serve only to … Continue Reading

That Sinking Feeling

Structuring the ownership of mixed use buildings requires care both initially and then during the management of the building.  In a recent case, an investor in the residential parts of a mixed use building faces a significant service charge shortfall that was avoidable. Residential tenants benefit from a statutory requirement that their service charge must … Continue Reading

Small Developments Affordable Housing News

Welcome news for developers of small sites. Following the government’s successful appeal last week against the decision in the West Berkshire Council and Reading Borough Council case nearly a year ago (click here to go to our previous posting), the National Planning Practice Guidance will be amended again. It is expected to reintroduce the relevant … Continue Reading

Don’t Let Deposits Spoil the Deal

A recent case acted as a reminder of the risk inherent in taking a contractual deposit which is greater than the market norm. That case involved penalties for overstaying permitted parking times and re-confirmed the contract law principle that a deposit must represent a genuine affirmation of a party’s earnest intention to proceed and must … Continue Reading

The sky’s the limit…

What would you do if; your property development business had obtained planning permission to construct a 62 storey tower comprising 200,714 sq.m; you had secured funding in principle to commence the development; BUT the proposed development infringed the rights to light of 61 properties – of which 53 were maintaining their fundamental right to an … Continue Reading

A new broom: sweeper clauses in residential leases

Properly employed, sweeper clauses are designed to catch service charge costs that may be unforeseeable at the time of drafting. This is an essential fall back when drafting a long residential lease whose term will be somewhere between 99 and 999 years and subject to a statutory right of extension on the same lease terms. … Continue Reading

Update on Office Conversions to Residential

The Government has issued a statement on 13 October 2015 confirming that the temporary permitted development right to convert office premises to residential, subject to local authority prior approval of specified matters, is to become permanent.  This was originally introduced as a temporary permitted development right in May 2013 and was due to expire in … Continue Reading

(UK) New Rules for ASTs

The snappily titled Assured Shorthold Tenancy Notice and Prescribed Requirements (England) Regulations 2015 come into force 1st October 2015. In a nutshell, the landlord of any AST granted from 1 October 2015 onwards must provide the following to the tenant: Government factsheet “How to Rent: the checklist for renting in England”. To ensure you always … Continue Reading

ESOS Regulations: Are you ready to report?

The Energy Savings Opportunity Scheme Regulations 2014 (“ESOS”) came into force across the UK last July. The purpose of ESOS is to require large businesses to identify energy efficiency savings by carrying out energy audits; ESOS is intended to deliver part of the UK’s 2020 target to reduce energy consumption by 20%. The reality is … Continue Reading

(UK) UK Government Policy Reversal on Small Developments Affordable Housing and the Vacant Building Credit

The recently introduced vacant building credit, and policy exemption for small developments from affordable housing contributions have been swiftly removed from national planning guidance this morning following a High Court ruling on Friday. The policy excluded developments of 10 homes and 1,000 square meters or less, from the requirement to provide or contribute to affordable … Continue Reading

More UK Residential Property for the IHT Net

The headline-grabbing inheritance tax (IHT) news from last week’s Budget was the introduction, from April 2017, of an additional nil rate band when a residence is passed on death to direct descendants. However this is only one part of the changes that were announced in relation to IHT and residential property, as significant changes were … Continue Reading

(UK) New Rules for Residential Landlords in Wales

Residential landlords of properties in Wales need to be aware of the extra regulatory burden that applies to them and particularly because breach could be a criminal offence. The Welsh Assembly has added an additional layer of regulations which affect private rented residential property in Wales only and which are expected to come into force … Continue Reading

(UK) Residential Service Charges Update

As increasing numbers of investors now include residential and mixed use properties in their portfolios there are bound to be issues dealing with the residential element of service charges and you really can’t be too careful about the administration of residential service charges. From our perspective it seems like an almost endless stream of cases … Continue Reading
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