Home Owners Rights Network Needs Our Help

#NewBuildTax @HorNet_Group #Fleecehold #MaintenanceScandal

As some of you will have seen we are monitoring the Home Owners Rights Network website and associated Facebook / Twitter pages. They are an action group with the tagline of “Scrap Estate Charges, Stop The Rot, Adopt The Lot!”.

Helen Goodman (MP Bishop Auckland) has the support of 30 MP’s for a Ten Minute Bill (see here) on 14th November 2018 to highlight the plight that we and others are experiencing on new build estates. We are not alone in this with Greenbelt being one of the worst so we have been told.

More information on this Ten Minute Bill can be found on Helen Goodmans page.

Could we ask that you send the content below in italics to Geoffrey Robinson using the Send An Email button on this page. Cut and paste from below takes just 2 mins. Just ensure you replace <your name> with your name (to sign it) and ensure the address details are correct in the relevant boxes. Make sure that once you have sent it, please confirm your email address (the email will come from WriteToThem). When you have sent it, please comment on the bottom of the Facebook post so we can get an idea of how many of you have sent it. This affects all of the northern side so it is in your interests to do this!

NOTE: This must be done before the end of Tuesday 13th November as the Ten Minute Bill will be heard the following day.

Dear Geoffrey Robinson,

Uncapped Estate Fees on New Build Freehold Properties

I am writing to you as my Member of Parliament to ask for your help to end the unfair practice of uncapped estate fees for homeowners on new build developments.

I live on one of many newly built private housing estates, notably Bannerbrook Park, Coventry (old Massey Ferguson site) where the communal areas have not been adopted by the local authority and are instead maintained by the housing developer or their management company. They charge each household an annual fee for this service, known variously as estate charges, rent charges, service charges and maintenance fees. These fees are uncapped, unregulated, and are treated as a cash cow by unscrupulous property companies who are no longer able to benefit from the leasehold ground rent scam.

This year, my household will have paid £100.37 in estate fees. There are 352 houses on one half of the development, with about 800 houses in total. One half of the estate pays nothing, whereas the newer northern side (352) are all paying the same.

The management company, Greenbelt, receive £35,330.24 per year on this estate alone. This is in exchange for examples of work such as grass cutting, so called planting works, fixing fence panels in area we do not know about and charging us for fly tipping and an admin service for which the fee is clearly disproportionate at £52!

I have no legal recourse to dispute these fees as I am a freeholder and unable to use the ombudsman service open to those with Leasehold properties.

The MP for Bishop Auckland, Ms Helen Goodman, will be presenting a Ten Minute Rule Bill on this subject in Parliament on 14th November, and I would like to ask for your support.

The Freehold Properties (Management Charges and Shared Facilities) Bill includes the following:
– Measures to regulate the fees charged to homeowners by management companies
– Measures to ensure shared facilities are of an adequate standard
– Provision for the self-management of communal areas by residents, should they wish.

I would very much appreciate it if you could support this bill, and raise this issue with Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, James Brokenshire MP.

If you use social media, you can post your support on Twitter and Facebook using the hashtag #NewBuildTax

You can find out more about this issue by visiting: https://www.helengoodman.org.uk/latest-news/2018/11/02/estatefees/

Yours sincerely,

<your name>

Local Resident

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