As ministers top up their tan abroad, whilst parliament has its summer holiday, the public continues to wage the war on cladding on home turf. The fallout from Robert Jenrick’s recent announcement, that buildings under 18m no longer need an EWS1 form, has continued to attract headlines. As if the debate over who exactly requires the infamous form isn’t confusing enough, according to the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau (NFIB) residents are now dealing with scammers posing as EWS1 assessment officials. A proposed ‘Polluter Pays’ amendment was also suggested this month, which would see those that ‘polluted’ the building liable
Proving the old adage ‘stars that burn twice as bright, burn half as long’ firmly wrong, the infamous Building Safety Bill continued to dominate the media landscape this month. The Bill had its first reading at the start of July, gaining mixed reviews. Once the typical procedural pomp of the first reading was out of the way, the media could grab its popcorn and settle in to the lively second reading. While the country’s politicians landed verbal blows on one another in Parliament, leaseholders continued to battle with remediation costs and EWS1 forms in the real world. As if remediation bills aren’t enough to deal with, residents of New
Building Safety Bulletin June 2021 You may have noticed a bright green hue emanating from your neighbour’s windows on the evening of Monday 14th this past month. This was in commemoration of the fourth anniversary of the tragic Grenfell Tower fire. Virtual events were held nationwide and as usual, the opposition wasted no time in using the anniversary as an opportunity to highlight the government’s inadequacies. The Building Safety Bill also proved its star-power once again as it continued to grab headlines this month. Inside Housing reported that nearly half of applications to the government’s Building Safety Fund from social landlords (councils and
It has been an interesting month in the media for building safety, not least following the recent passing of the highly anticipated Fire Safety Bill. The government may have been hoping that the dust would settle quickly, but the opposition has had other ideas. Media outlets of all shapes and sizes have not held back on their criticism of the government, accusing them of betraying leaseholders and leaving innocent people to pick up the bills. You have may missed the Queen’s speech – it was a more subdued affair this year owing to the ongoing pandemic. Among the 26 Bills
Opinions may vary regarding Robert Jenrick’s announcement on further funding for cladding remediation work earlier this month. However, I think it’s fair to say that ‘widespread condemnation’ was the overwhelming response from media outlets up and down the country. Front pages were splashed with the words ‘betrayal’, ‘anger’ and ‘laughable’. Even backbench Conservative MPs broke ranks to criticise the government. It’s hard to recall any other government announcement receiving quite such a hostile reaction. Why is everyone so angry? Simply put, the further £3.5bn announced earlier this month doesn’t go anywhere near far enough. The House of Commons’ Housing, Communities
The Background The Law Commission published three reports earlier in July 2020 which set out a series of proposals to reform the leasehold system in England and Wales. The Law Commission was asked to look into the issue of leasehold reform by the government after former communities secretary Sajid Javid promised (in 2017) to make extending leases and purchasing a freehold ‘much easier, faster and cheaper.’ The leasehold system has been criticised for many years, but most recently for the ‘ground rent scandal’, where homeowners had unwittingly bought homes with ground rents which would double every ten years, making them almost impossible
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