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To: Michael Gove

Fleecehold over 5 million plus affected

Photo by Jamie Street on Unsplash
Dear Mr Gove

I am compelled to contact you about my serious concerns regarding the article in the Sunday Times on 24th March; ‘Leasehold dream over as Gove plan quietly crumbles’.

As a member of the National Leasehold Campaign (NLC) I am extremely disappointed to hear that the Government is allegedly going soft on leasehold reform. Thousands of leaseholders have responded to the Government’s Ground Rent consultation, explaining in their droves why existing ground rents need to be reduced to a peppercorn to avoid the inherent unfairness of a two-tier system now that ground rents are limited to a peppercorn on new build properties. It is extremely frustrating that, if the rumors are true, the Treasury and the Prime Minister have been hoodwinked by sector lobbyists who have no regard for the leasehold misery faced by millions of leaseholders across the country. It also seems they are running scared from legal challenges funded by freehold investors with skin in the ground rent game and deep pockets. I believe that retrospective action on ground rents would have no material impact on pension schemes, and those pension schemes that do have ground rent investments should be reassessing them - no reputable company with a responsible and ethical investment strategy would invest in ground rents if they saw first-hand the misery they cause and the deplorable sales tactics that have led so many leaseholders to have onerous ground rents. With a general election looming, abandoning a manifesto commitment that would help thousands of leaseholders is just pure folly.

On 11th December 2023 Michael Gove stated “I have limited to no patience now with the well-funded lobby groups that stand up for those freeholders and seek to ensure that they can continue to extract money from leaseholders. It seems to me that, at a critical point, the argument that is sometimes made on behalf of those people disappeared because of their negligence and their moral fault.”

Gove went on to say “I will be looking at the responses to the consultation, & I am sure that some of London’s finest legal firms & most eloquent solicitors will be putting in some very thoughtful contributions, but the question will be: who is paying for them and how much are they being paid? To my mind, people can buy silver-tongued eloquence, but what is far more important is actually being on the right side of justice.”

The Competition & Markets Authority have stated that “Leaseholders are captive consumers and get no benefit from ground rent. Ground rents are not legally or commercially necessary.”

The Leasehold & Freehold Bill has its 2nd reading this week in the House of Lords. 10 million leaseholders are losing faith that this Bill will deliver meaningful reforms. If it doesn’t then leaseholders will certainly not forgive and forget the many broken promises.

Please help us to get the leasehold reforms through that we so desperately need. We may not have deep pockets to lobby but we are certainly on the right side of justice.

Many thanks

Why is this important?

This is equally if not worse than the post office scandal
The government is aware
Leaseholders are trapped in homes they cannot sell, there have been suicides, bankruptcies, severe mental health issues, all because freeholders are literally fleecing LH
We cannot sell, mortgage and the properties are not maintained?
Wales, and England are the only countries in the world with this feudal system, which the conservatives will NOT change as most are freeholders themselves



2024-04-25 16:48:37 +0100

100 signatures reached

2024-03-28 11:34:21 +0000

50 signatures reached

2024-03-26 17:40:04 +0000

25 signatures reached

2024-03-26 10:56:07 +0000

10 signatures reached