As half new properties are now leasehold, Sir Peter Bottomley urged the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government to work with stakeholders to prevent abuses “to ensure that ordinary people buying their first home do not find that it is unsaleable and of no value when they decide to leave.
Sajid Javid, the Secretary of State, replied: “My hon. Friend makes an important point. We must ensure that the kind of abuse he mentions is stamped out. We work with a number of stakeholders, and we will certainly see how we can do more.”
In a separate question to Housing Minister Gavin Barwell, Alistair Burt (North East Bedfordshire, Con), questioned the “effectiveness of the regulation of property management agents working on newly developed housing.”
Mr Barwell replied: “My right hon. Friend is right to raise concerns about the quality of service provided by some managing agents. That is why we introduced legislation to ensure that property management agents belong to an approved redress scheme.”
Burt added: “I am working with constituents who, despite a number of complaints about management services on a relatively newly built estate, find that the management agents are not prepared to meet them as a group. They find that their local parish council has discontinued contact with the management agents, and the management agents have not held an annual general meeting, as they promised in their agreement.
“If this is in any way familiar to my hon. Friend, will he tell me what more my constituents can do to redress the balance of power between themselves and the people who seem to have them over a barrel?”