News and Articles

Office closure

19/12/2023

We will be closing our office from 4pm on Friday 22 December, re-opening at 10am on Tuesday 02 December. Please contact advice@commonlease.co.uk for emergencies. We thank you for your patience and understanding.   

Leasehold London 2024

17/12/2023

We are delighted to have been asked to speak again at next year’s Leasehold London 2024. We will be teaming up with Rebecca Cattermole, barrister at 39 Essex Chambers, to bring delegates a session on managing resident-owned or managed buildings. The session will be particularly useful for any leaseholders who are directors of RMCs (resident management companies). For more information on the conference, please see here.

Ground rent consultation: extension of deadline

08/12/2023

The deadline for responding to the ground rent consultation has now been extended to 17 January 2024. By way of reminder, the consultation can be found here.

Ground rent consultation: impact assessment

06/12/2023

The ground rent consultation page has now been updated to include the impact assessment for the Government’s consultation. The impact assessment explains key information on the proposals including relevant data. The impact assessment can be found here.

The Leasehold and Freehold Reform Bill

27/11/2023

The long-awaited and highly anticipated draft legislation is here! The bill has been released in full, and has had the first reading today. The bill is a lengthy document and seeks to cover four major areas: enfranchisement, right to manage & ground rents, service charges and freehold estates. There is no date yet for the second reading. The bill can be read in full here.

Ground rent consultation

09/11/2023

Following the King’s Speech, the Department of Levelling Up, Housing and Communities has released a consultation on options for capping ground rent in existing leases. The deadline for responding to the consultation is 22 December 2023. The consultation can be read in full here.

Introduction of the “Leasehold and Freehold Reform Bill”

07/11/2023

The King’s Speech today confirmed that the Leasehold and Freehold Reform Bill will be introduced to Parliament in the new Parliamentary session. The King’s Speech was immediately followed by a briefing pack which released “headline” content for the draft Bill. Until the draft Bill is released in full, it will not be clear how the headlines will be implemented. The briefing pack to the King’s Speech can be found here.

CMA freehold estate update

03/11/2023

The Competition and Markets Authority has released an update today as part of their investigation into freehold estate charges payable by freehold home owners towards the upkeep of the communal areas. The CMA is currently exploring options and has invited comment from stakeholders by 24 November 2023. The CMA's update can be found here with the case page here. The Department of Levelling Up and Communities has issued an updated advice page for those paying freehold estate charges here.

Government insurance pledge

30/10/2023

The Government has issued a press release confirming the signing of a "pledge" with key insurance providers in respect of commissions on multi-unit buildings. This follows the publication of the FCA's final report a few weeks back. The full press release can be found here.

We are recruiting!

28/10/2023

We are delighted to launch our recruitment campaign for a paralegal or junior solicitor! We are also welcoming applications from experienced commonhold, freehold or leasehold lawyers with their own case load and who are interested in a consultancy position. Read more for the full job specification and details on how to apply.

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"What just happened?!"

27/10/2023

The King’s Speech promises to bring the highly anticipated leasehold reform legislation on 07 November 2023. Matt Lewis has teamed up with News on the Block and will be hosting a free one-hour lunchtime webinar to go through the King’s Speech. The session will include a look at the next steps and some immediate considerations for those working in the industry. The webinar is suitable for all including landlord, leaseholders, managing agents, valuers and lawyers. Tickets are available on a first come first serve basis and can be booked here. 

LURA lease extension problem fixed

26/10/2023

The Levelling-Up and Regeneration bill, as it was, received Royal Assent today, meaning that the bill is now final. The commencement date of the Act is awaited. Importantly for enfranchisement lawyers and valuers, the final version of the bill included the clause needed to fix the “lease extension building safety trap”. Further, the clause applies retrospectively. The final version of the bill has not yet been released at the time of writing.

Economic Crime and Corporate Transparency Act

26/10/2023

The ECCTA received Royal Assent today. Whilst of no obvious impact for those in the landlord and tenant space, the Act introduces additional compliance for companies, including a requirement to verify identification and provide an email address going forward. It is anticipated that it will commence early next year, and will affect both existing and new companies. For lawyers advising leaseholders on collective enfranchisement or right to manage where companies need to be incorporated as part of the process, additional steps will need to be taken going forward.

The RRB Housing Act: what next?

24/10/2023

In what has been a busy week for legislation, the RRB has stolen the limelight in the press this week. The bill has been controversial since the beginning, with the primary object to abolish “no fault evictions”. Separately, a key clause in the bill, section 21, addresses a “trap” for long leaseholders who have high ground rents which can make it difficult for those affected to sell or remortgage without incur, in some cases, significant expense. The RRB has made headlines this week due to the delay in progressing the bill, which is bad news for leaseholders affected by the ground rent issue. The latest update confirms that the Bill Committee will be scrutinising the Bill by 5 December 2023. A motion has also been made to carry forward the Bill into the next Parliamentary session.  

MBL training sessions: stay up-to-date!

09/10/2023

The King’s Speech is less than a month away, and we will know once and for all if leasehold reform is going to happen during this Parliamentary term. Mari and her team have been delivering weekly sessions via MBL on a range of subject matter, designed for lawyers (including residential conveyancers), managing agents, valuers, landlords and tenants alike. Please visit the MBL website for a full list of our dedicated sessions to keep on top of the constantly changing landscape.   

FCA insurance update

29/09/2023

The FCA released an update today in respect of insurance commissions payable on multi-unit buildings. From 2024, those responsible for placing insurance in such buildings will need to have regard for the leaseholders with emphasis on value and transparency. The new measures complement the work being undertaken by the Department of Levelling Up, Housing and Communities in respect of insurance commissions. The full update can be found here.

LURB lease extension fix?

22/09/2023

The Levelling-Up and Regeneration Bill took an unexpected turn this week when an amendment tackling the “lease extension and building safety trap” was approved in the House of Lords during the Third Reading yesterday. The wording does immediately pose questions as to whether or not it actually achieves the goal of closing the loophole created by the Building Safety Act 2022 for those extending their leases. A separate clause also seeks to amend the qualifying tenant boundaries for those with more than three units. The bill will now be passed back to the House of Commons for consideration of the amendments including the two leasehold amendments. Details can be found here.

APPG for Leasehold Reform

19/09/2023

The regular APPG for leasehold reform was held yesterday in the Palace of Westminster. Matt Lewis was delighted to attend on behalf of Commonhold and Leasehold Experts Limited. The event was very well attended as always with fascinating speakers, especially during a time when leasehold is in the process of being reformed.

NOTB Birmingham conference

15/09/2023

Yesterday marked the “Leasehold Roadshow” Birmingham event which was very well attended as always. Matt Lewis was invited to host one of the workshops, on the topic of “commonhold vs leasehold” which led to a healthy debate with a couple of landlords in particular. For details of further roadshow events, please see here.

Congratulations to Elin!

29/08/2023

We are absolutely delighted to confirm that Elin has been promoted to paralegal from legal assistant. Elin has worked hard over the last few years, working with both the litigation and residential conveyancing teams. The promotion is very well deserved and we look forward to seeing what Elin does next!

Office now closed for our summer break

18/08/2023

Our offices are now closed for our summer break. We will be back on 29 August, fully refreshed and ready to go! In the case of an emergency, please contact advice@commonlease.co.uk.

House of Commons update

14/08/2023

The House of Commons has updated the leasehold reform page to include a list of proposals for the legislation. This includes primarily changes to the enfranchisement laws, including valuation calculations to make it more cost effective for leaseholders. The full update can be found here.

CLE assists ALEP with commonhold!

02/08/2023

The team were delighted to recently assist the Association of Leasehold Enfranchisement Practitioners with the drafting of their commonhold pages on their website. The website is a source of information for their members, landlords and leaseholders. The updated commonhold pages can be found  here.


Matt Lewis appointed Judge for PMAs

18/07/2023

Matt has been invited to join the judging panel for the Property Management Awards. The event will held in London on 23 November 2023, and promises to be a glittering affair! For more event details and for tickets please see here.

CLE wins Solicitors of the Year Awards!

07/07/2023

The team are thrilled to have won “Solicitors of the Year Award” at the Enfranchisement and Right to Manage Awards. The Awards ceremony was a glamorous affair held in London and attended by industry professionals. It means a lot to the team to have won this award having fought off fierce competition from the biggest names in the industry. Thank you to all!