Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government written question – answered on 4th September 2018.

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Photo of Chris Green Chris Green Conservative, Bolton West

To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what recent estimate he has made of the number of people affected by problem leaseholds; and what steps his Department is taking to inform those so affected.

Photo of Heather Wheeler Heather Wheeler Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Housing, Communities and Local Government)

In 2015-16, there were 4.2 million leasehold dwellings in England, including 1.4 million houses. While there are examples of leasehold working well, there are also problems including disproportionate costs to extend leases, poor value property management, and a slow and costly sales process.

We will bring forward legislation as soon as Parliamentary time allows, prohibiting new residential long leases from being granted on houses. We will also introduce legislation so that, in the future, ground rents on newly established leases of houses and flats are set at a peppercorn.

The Government intends to consult over the summer on how our plans will be implemented.

On 26 June 2018, the Government published How to Lease: a guide for anyone already living in a leasehold property or anyone thinking of buying one.

The Government wants to ensure there is appropriate support for existing leaseholders. We are working with the ombudsmen and Trading Standards to provide leaseholders with comprehensive information on the various routes to redress.

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