Are you a leaseholder stuck in the building safety crisis and wondering where to turn? In this blogpost, we’ve pulled together a summary of the current resources that may help you.
While promising announcements come and go from the Government, developers, banks and insurers, we know that action to make homes safe and to stop the financial burden on leaseholders is far too slow, and hundreds of thousands of people are still stuck in the building safety crisis.
Throughout this crisis we have continued to press DLUHC to provide more support to leaseholders, and we will continue to give input to improve the information and resources available. We will also continue to signpost any new support that becomes available.
Contact DLUHC’s Resident Engagement team
You can contact DLUHC’s Resident Engagement Team to raise issues you are having with insurance, mortgage lending, funding contracts or any other problem.
Please include the topic in the email header so that your email reaches the right team. To speed things up, please name your building and be specific about your circumstances and the actions that you have taken to date (e.g. which banks refused your application and when), and attach written evidence if you have it.
You can also copy our team, so that we can follow up where necessary. We are a small team of volunteers and receive hundreds of emails every month so we may not be able to respond to every email, but the information you provide will help us to escalate your issues in the appropriate meetings with government officials and other stakeholders.
Contact your Constituency MP
Does your MP know that the building safety crisis isn’t over and that you are still affected? It doesn’t matter if your MP is in government or in opposition, or whether they voted for or against leaseholder protections when the legislation was passed. All MPs have a duty to support their constituents and will also want your vote at the next general election. You can find their contact details at WriteToThem.
You can also ask your MP to write to or meet your freeholder or developer, to put pressure on them to resolve your issue.
Your MP can write a letter to Ministers or have a meeting behind the scenes to raise your issues. They can also raise written or oral parliamentary questions with DLUHC ministers in the House of Commons (as long as they do not hold a ministerial or government role themselves). You can help them to help you by being specific about the question you want them to ask; try to frame your question in such a way that they can use your case to illustrate a wider building safety issue. To see the format of past written questions, check out LUHC Answers.
Contact the Recovery Strategy Unit via your MP
If the situation at your building is at an impasse – because your building owner won’t engage or is finding loopholes to avoid their responsibility under the Building Safety Act, for example – then your MP can escalate the issue to the Recovery Strategy Unit, as Michael Gove told the House of Commons on 30th January.
Where do I find relevant information from DLUHC?
It can be difficult for leaseholders affected by the building safety crisis to navigate all the relevant information on the DLUHC website. Here is some key information that you may want to bookmark:
To date there is no specific DLUHC guidance aimed at non-qualifying leaseholders. We have raised this issue with the Department and will continue to push for specific guidance to be published.
- Guidance on what is a ‘relevant defect’.
- A summary of what leaseholders do and do not have to pay.
- Information on leaseholder contribution caps and how to determine the value of your property for the purpose of building safety costs.
- Information required from leaseholders and building owners including the Leaseholder Deed of Certificate, which you complete to prove your status as a qualifying leaseholder, and the Landlord Certificate, which your building owner must complete before they can charge you any relevant building safety costs (with links to the certificate templates).
- Frequently asked questions about the Leaseholder Deed of Certificate. We have asked DLUHC to continue to update this page with further questions to ensure it is comprehensive. Please let us know if you think any advice is missing.
- How to take action through the Property Chamber of the First-tier Tribunal. This page also includes links to the forms you will need to apply for either a Remediation Order (BSA1) or Remediation Contribution Order (BSA2).
Leaseholders Supporting Leaseholders
We often produce surveys so that we can crowdsource information on a particular issue in more depth – whether that’s asking about your experience of Housing Associations, EWS1 forms or building safety funding schemes. It may not feel as though completing a survey is helping to fix your own specific issue, but with your help we can gather real-life examples at scale, which helps us increase the pressure on officials and other stakeholders. Please keep an eye out for surveys on our Twitter page and via UKCAG’s mailing list (sign up here) and help us by taking action that will help everyone – we are stronger together.
To join a national or local cladding action group in your area, where you can both ask for and give support to other leaseholders, please visit our Campaign Partners page.
The End Our Cladding Scandal campaign calls on the Government to lead an urgent, national effort to fix the building safety crisis.
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