The Intermediary Mortgage Lenders Association (IMLA) has welcomed the government’s plans to axe the sale of new build properties on a leasehold basis.
The changes, announced by housing minister James Brokenshire MP, include immediate action to prevent Help to Buy being used to purchase leasehold properties.
IMLA believes that the changes will help new buyers avoid becoming victims of unfair leasehold practices, such as high ground rent fees, and give them much more certainty around the home buying process.
Kate Davies, executive director of IMLA, said: “IMLA supports a housing market that is fair for all buyers.
“These proposals from the government, including immediate action to remove leasehold properties from Help to Buy, will protect consumers from some of the unjust practices we have seen in recent years regarding leasehold properties, such as high ground rent fees.
“However, for the government’s plans to truly be successful, it’s important that estate charges are also included within the scope of these changes.
“These fees are often levied on freehold property owners and include unfair and disproportionate charges for simple maintenance jobs.
“The addition of these only serve to increase the costs of owning a new build property, and ultimately stand against the work being done by the government and the industry to help more potential buyers onto the housing ladder.”