Help to buy schemes for first-time buyers

Buying a house is one of the biggest investments you will make in your lifetime and we understand that it can be especially difficult when you are a first-time buyer. The government has set up various help to buy schemes to assist first-time buyers get their feet on the ladder. Let’s take a look at…


deposit

How to buy a house with just 5% deposit  

The standard amount of deposit generally required to purchase a house is 10% of the purchase price. When you’re a first-time buyer, this can be a huge and daunting figure to even consider saving for. Under the Help to Buy Scheme, introduced by the Government in April 2013, home buyers can purchase…


What is a flying freehold?

There are two main types of land ownership: freehold and leasehold. Freehold ownership is where the person owns outright all of the land and buildings on a plot. For example, houses are usually freehold properties. On the other hand you have leasehold property. This is where a property is owned for…


Tenancy fee ban comes into force

Fees sought from tenants by landlords can often be a prickly subject. New rules came into force on 1 June 2019 concerning the costs that a landlord may pass on to tenants. This has been referred to as the tenancy fee ban. All new tenancies granted on or after 1 June 2019 are subject to the new…


Japanese knotweed

Knot again! Japanese knotweed and property

Japanese knotweed can cause property owners numerous issues. From costly eradication works, to reducing the property value. We take a look at Japanese knotweed, and some recent cases involving knotweed on neighbouring land, and a professional negligence claim against a surveyor that did not spot…


Ground rent increases and unexpected Assured Shorthold Tenancies

Many freeholders are selling leasehold properties which are subject to unreasonable ground rent provisions. Landlords can only increase the ground rent if the lease contains a provision allowing them to do so. In some cases, such provision can create an unreasonable or excessive annual rent amount.…


Government announces fund to cover recladding

Just last month, I wrote about how some owners of high-rise buildings with Grenfell Tower-style cladding (aluminium composite material, known as ACM) were attempting to recover the cost of the recladding from the owners of the flats. However, today, the Housing Secretary, James Brokenshire has…


HMO licensing - avoiding a costly mistake

It is well known that landlords of residential premises must comply with various laws to ensure their tenants’ health and safety. For example, where the property is a House in Multiple Occupation (HMO), the landlord may require a licence from the local authority. We have looked previously at the…


Stamp Duty Land Tax on residential property transactions

When purchasing property in the UK, there are different ways that Stamp Duty Land Tax (‘SDLT’) is calculated. We explain the different types of scenario below. First-time buyers Those who have not owned property before are entitled to apply for first-time buyer relief. This means that…


Fire safety and service charges

Incredibly, we are approaching two years since the devastating and fatal fire at Grenfell Tower. Understandably, since the tragedy, both building owners and flat owners have looked to their own buildings’ fire safety. Since then, the first-tier Tribunal has seen a number of cases on whether…