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Service Charges

Question for Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government

UIN 198765, tabled on 4 December 2018

To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what steps his Department is taking to prevent the sale of freeholds with mandatory service charges attached for community and public space maintenance.

Answered on

12 December 2018

Developers of new estates may voluntarily provide open spaces for residents or be required, as a planning condition, to include public open spaces and make provision for its future upkeep. It is up to developers and local planning authorities to agree appropriate funding arrangements for those developments where public open space is a planning condition. The Government believes that it should be clear to potential purchasers what the arrangements are for the upkeep of open space - public or otherwise. The Government is committed to providing freeholders with new rights to ensure that where they do pay charges for the maintenance of communal areas and facilities on a private or mixed use estate, they can access equivalent rights as leaseholders to challenge their reasonableness. We set out our proposed approach to implementing these measures in part 4 of the recent leasehold reform consultation which closed on 26 November this year.