Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
An artist who bought a flat in a council-owned block faces homelessness
after his local authority demanded he pay nearly £98,000 towards building repairs.
Leaseholders on other local authority estates, including former tenants who bought their home from the council, could face similar bill shock as councils rush to renovate poor-quality housing to meet the government's decent home standards. Campaigners say the system makes a mockery of right to buy legislation, which helps council tenants onto the property ladder, and risks bankrupting low-income residents who buy local authority-owned properties because they are more affordable.

Since council tenants are not liable for maintenance and repair costs, the bill for entire blocks is divided between any leaseholders and the local authority freeholder. Unlike residents in privately owned buildings, local authority leaseholders have no rights to decide the scope and timing of proposed works or to request comparative quotes from contractors. Local councils often sign long-term agreements with private contractors who do not have to tender for each project, leading to accusations of bribery and overcharging.
According to critics, leaseholders are footing the bill for years of underinvestment in council housing stock. Harris's building was in serious disrepair, despite the lease stipulating cyclical maintenance every five years. In 2015, he took out a loan after receiving a £20,000 repair estimate from Lambeth council, but the works were never undertaken.

Four years later, he was notified of the £98,000 charge for the same work, including a new roof and windows....

by Cat on Mon Dec 19th, 2022 at 12:18:56 AM EST
[ Parent ]

Others have rated this comment as follows:

Oui 4


Occasional Series