Property and Building Surveyors

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This Month's Newsletter

Property and Building Surveyors

Welcome to the Property Advice Newsletter
Written by Independent Chartered Surveyors
of the UK wide network of Property Professionals

Publication date: 11th December 2014

In this month's edition... The Court of Appeal assesses two different ways of interpreting service charge regulations, a tenant pays £70,000 for a broken fence, a veteran is forced into homelessness for lack of being a drunk or drug addict, Bicester receives go-ahead for new Garden City and Osborne reveals sweeping stamp duty changes which will effect us all...

The Property Market Monthly Fact File - December 2014
The property market fact file is a collection of data compiled each month by our Chartered Surveyors and the team; collating survey data, statistics, trends and information from the property market. This aims to provide a single place where anyone with an interest in UK property can find the information they need.
To read the monthly fact file, click here.

Landmark Court of Appeal ruling balances contrasting ‘aggregate’ and ‘sets’ approaches to service charges, resulting in boon for landlords and tenants alike
Ref. Francis v Phillips (2014)
Section 20 of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1985 limits a landlord’s recovery of the cost of qualifying works from residential tenants by service charge to £250 per tenant. This case explored the term ‘qualifying works’, contrasting two methods of interpretation with widely different consequences to landlords and tenants alike…
To read the whole article, click here.

Tenants liable for damages of £70,000 in case concerning onerous break clause because of poorly kept fence
Ref. Sirhowy Investments Limited v Henderson & Knight (2014)
In an interesting case for tenants and their advisors, a tenant has been found liable for substantial damages due to an ineffective break clause. The case stands as a reminder to all that onerous break clause conditions should be avoided at all costs…
To read the whole article, click here.

Prominent Councillor faces prosecution for failing to disclose multiple pecuniary interests before taking office
November saw the Crown Prosecution Service give local police the go ahead to bring proceedings against Cllr Spencer Flower, 72, for three offences under Sections 31 and 34 of the Localism Act 2011. Namely, that he failed to disclose major pecuniary interests in two local companies…
To read the whole article, click here.

Bournemouth City Centre - Could this veteran's homelessness have been avoided?

Council criteria creates homeless ex-soldier because he is "not a drunk or drug addict”
Bournemouth Council has rejected a request for help from exactly the sort of person who we think should be entitled to priority assistance from the state. Despite 9 years in the armed forces and over a decade of working as a kitchen fitter and paying his taxes, Matthew Dennis was refused by Bournemouth Council in his hour of need. Why? Because he wasn't a 'priority case'…
To read the whole article, click here.

Substantial blow to Councils as Pickles removes S. 106 charges for small builders
Identifying the heavy burden of S. 106 negotiations and charges as a major stumbling block for the UK construction industry, Eric Pickles has moved to exempt sites of 10 or fewer properties from the Council's grip. The result should be a boost to the numbers of small and medium sized construction firms, which have been hit hard by the recent recession and are yet to bounce back…
To read the whole article, click here.

Bicester Garden City planned for North Oxfordshire
New Garden Cities are being pushed through by the coalition government in locations across the country, resulting in localised large scale investment. We look at the issues surrounding development proposed for Bicester, North Oxfordshire, the political and fiscal motives and a brief history of the garden city movement…
To read the whole article, click here.

Bicester Shopping Village

London borough of Kensington and Chelsea becomes the first local authority to restrict the development of “mega basements”
London Borough of Kensington and Chelsea set to halt the rising trend of basement extensions by imposing restrictions that are likely to be followed by other affected boroughs such as Westminster and Wandsworth…
To read the whole article, click here.

Thousands of new homes on the cards, as Government announces new measures
The Government aims to deliver thousands of new homes over the coming years with the help of a raft of new construction related announcements. The idea is to build on recent successes and the current seven-year high in construction output, in order to deliver more affordable homes and more construction jobs around the country and to sustain our G7 leading growth figures…
To read the whole article, click here.

Chancellor’s Autumn Statement - Stamp Duty
George Osborne's Autumn Statement has brought about the end of the frequently criticised 'slab-style' Stamp Duty system, introducing a new system more akin to income tax. The result will be stamp duty savings for all but the highest value 2% of the market. We look at what the changes really mean and how the previous method was flawed…
To read the whole article, click here.

Back by popular demand...

The Mundic Block Problem
All you need to know on mundic block, how it happens and where it is found...
To read the whole article, click here.

And Finally....

In case you missed it…..Architect erects 6ft 5 inch fence around front garden to protect children, only to be told he must tear it down.

Architect erects 6ft 5 inch fence around front garden only to be told he must tear it down, even though he claims it is a vital defence to make his children feel safe…
To read the whole article, click here.

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The next newsletter will be published in January. Click here to access the Newsletters Archive

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