Ground Rent Rip-Off Must End


Liz McInnes MP has spoken out in support of hundreds of local residents who have found themselves the victims of a ground rent rip-off.

Thousands of people across the country including hundreds in Heywood and Middleton who have purchased properties from developers including Taylor Wimpey have found that their ground rent will double every ten years. This leaves many properties effectively without resale value and unattractive to new buyers, and existing homeowners faced with extortionate fees increasing without limit into the future.

Liz McInnes MP says: ‘I have been contacted by dozens of residents in recent weeks as this story has come to light, and I am appalled at the behavior of developers who are selling properties leasehold when at one time they would be freehold. Ground rents have of course long existed but have traditionally been for a small token amount, far less than the hundreds of pounds each year being asked for by unscrupulous developers today.

I am pleased to say that Labour have announced a plan to end to routine use of leasehold ownership in developments of new houses. I have written to the Housing Minister to raise the issue on behalf of residents in Heywood and Middleton, and I hope that continued pressure on the government will force them to tackle this issue sooner rather than later.’

Labour’s Shadow Secretary of State for Housing John Healey MP says: ‘Home-owners who bought their home on a leasehold basis are currently unprotected from huge rises in rip-off ground rents from developers or management companies. At its worst this is little more than legalised extortion and too many leaseholders are having to pay hefty bills as a result.

Under a Labour government this sharp practice would end. A Labour government would give leaseholders security from rip-off ground rents and end the routine use of leasehold ownership in new housing developments.’


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