Real estate legal update

16th August 2023

In the real world of real estate

A quick update on changes to the law and how you may be affected.

Class “C5 – short term lets

The new use class “C5” will be distinct from the existing use class relating to dwelling houses (“C3“).

Airbnb rentals and serviced apartments may be affected, preventing new purchasers from being able to let their properties if a council removed permitted development and refused to grant planning permission.

The Renters’ (Reform) Bill

This Bill is set to abolish section 21 ‘no fault’ evictions, after a fixed term expires, or a periodic tenancy expires.  Giving tenants security of tenure and confidence to challenge landlords without fear of losing their tenancy.

Measures of the Bill include:

  • All tenancies will operate as a rolling monthly periodic tenancy.
  • The tenant will need to give two months’ notice to leave the premises.
  • More comprehensive possession grounds when a landlord wishes to sell or occupy the property, making it easier to repossess when there are significant rent arrears of if there has been anti-social behaviour by the tenant.
  • The ability for tenants to request to keep pets in the home, and therefore landlords can no longer unreasonably refuse.

Overseas entities

Those holding property in England from overseas had to register their beneficial owners at Companies House within six months of 1 August 2022.

It is a requirement to maintain the register  annually, even if there are no changes.

Failure to comply will lead to significant fines and criminal sanctions.

The Building Safety Act 2022

The act includes changes to the law and a new regulatory framework for higher-risk residential buildings.

It also covers:

  • Fire Safety Order in workplaces and other premises
  • Limiting residential leaseholder liability for defective cladding in existing buildings
  • Powers to prohibit developers from carrying out development if they have failed to contribute to the remediation of their existing defective building.
  • An extension on the limitation period under the Defective Premises Act 1972 to 15 years in respect of buildings constructed after the Act came into force and 30 years in respect of pre-existing buildings
  • Prescriptive sales and re-gearing will also be affected.

If you are a developer, owner, landlord, tenant or contractor and would like to speak to our real estate team about how any of the above impacts you, get in touch.

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