Righting the Wrongs of the Building Safety Act
House of Commons votes for amendment following ALEP’s advice
The 2022 Building Safety Act, hastily drafted following the Hackitt Review Building a Safer Future, contains some technical issues which are beginning to impact on leaseholders and cause considerable doubt and uncertainty. Specifically, confusion surrounds the definition of a ‘qualifying lease’ under Section 119 of the Building Safety Act, which states that to qualify for remediation a lease must have been granted before 14 February 2022.
It was good news for leaseholders and the professionals advising them, therefore, that the House of Commons has supported changes, to be brought forward through the Levelling Up and Regeneration Bill at its Third Reading yesterday.
In April, the Association of Leasehold Enfranchisement Practitioners (ALEP) wrote to the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Local Government and Building Safety Lee Rowley MP, highlighting concerns from professionals specialising in leasehold enfranchisement.
ALEP advised the Government on the need for a legislative amendment to provide that extensions of qualifying leases are covered by the leaseholder protections, and that this could be implemented through the Levelling Up and Regeneration Bill.
“We are pleased, on behalf of the many leaseholders affected, that the House of Commons clearly understood the gravity of the situation and supported amending the Levelling Up and Regeneration Bill accordingly. This will be reassuring news for many and will remove the current uncertainty affecting many transactions.
“Following this positive step, we are hopeful that the Government will announce a new Bill to address the wider issue of leasehold reform in the forthcoming King's Speech.”