Covid-19 and restrictions on enforcement: 2021 update – an end in sight?

Since March 2020, when the Government passed an unprecedented raft of protective measures to restrict a landlord’s ability (in both the commercial and residential sectors) to pursue remedies for the recovery of arrears (but also other covenant breaches), the practical effect has meant that landlords have not been generally permitted to seek to take back … Read more

Ground rent reform shaking the foundations of the leasehold system?

On 7 January 2021, the Housing Secretary, Robert Jenrick, confirmed long awaited proposals banning leasehold ground rents in England. This announcement follows the Law Commission’s recommendations last year on residential leasehold reform (see our blog post here) and is expected to benefit up to 4.5 million leaseholders, including retirement properties. Under these changes, leaseholders of … Read more

High streets or housing? Time to decide

On 3 December 2020, MHCLG published a consultation proposing “measures to support housing delivery, economic recovery, and public service infrastructure”. The proposals have potentially very significant impacts. The government has demonstrated that it is prepared to move quickly following such consultations, frequently adopting measures consulted upon with little further consultation or notice. It is therefore … Read more

Repurposing real estate assets – Five things to think about

Repurposing real estate assets, in particular retail assets, is expected to be a key trend in the coming months and years. In this article we look at five of the key tax considerations to think about when considering repurposing buildings. 1. What rate of SDLT will you pay on acquisition? If you need to acquire … Read more

UCO changes – uncertainty remains despite JR decision

Last Tuesday, the High Court handed down its decision in R (Rights: Community: Action) v Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government [2020] EWHC 3073 (Admin). This judicial review challenged regulations amending the Use Classes Order (UCO) (the UCO Amendment Regulations) which introduced a new, wide Use Class E (see our blog post … Read more

The Building Safety Bill – a new era of accountability

It’s sometimes hard to remember that amongst all of the Covid-19 and Brexit related work that the government is contending with there is still other business to be undertaken. In July of this year, the government released a draft “Building Safety Bill” which aims to introduce a “new era of accountability … for the design, … Read more

Changes to the Use Classes Order in England from 1 September 2020 – FAQs

On 1 September 2020, the Town and Country Planning (Use Classes) (Amendment) (England) Regulations 2020 (the Regulations) will come into force, making far reaching amendments to the Town and Country Planning (Use Classes) Order 1987 (UCO). Whilst the UCO has been amended several times since its introduction in 1987, these are the most significant reforms … Read more

COVID-19: What are the new far-reaching restrictions on recovery of rent arrears?

The Government’s decision that it will temporarily ban landlords from serving statutory demands or issuing winding up petitions has sent shockwaves through much of the investment property market. In a press release on 23 April 2020, the Government announced that statutory demands served on “companies” between 1 March and 30 June 2020, and winding-up petitions … Read more