Consultations round-up

Consultations round-up

Robert Flint from Legis runs through some of the ongoing Government consultations that could have an impact on the housing sector.

Main Image: smolaw11/Adobestock

Welcome to PHPD’s first monthly round up of Government consultations relevant to the housing sector. In partnership with Robert Flint of Legis we will give you all you need to know about upcoming policies which may affect your business.

Below are:
1. Government consultations which are open and can be responded to;
2. Law Commission calls for evidence;
3. Select Committee inquiries; and
4. Policies which the Government has said it will consult on soon.

1. Open Government Consultations
– Considering the case for a housing court: call for evidence – closing on 22nd January 2019, the Government is seeking views to improve the experience of people using courts and tribunal services in property cases, including considering the case for a specialist Housing Court.

– Biodiversity net gain: updating planning requirements – in a consultation closing on 10th February 2019, DEFRA is seeking views on how it can improve the planning system in England to protect the environment.

– Consultation on changes to the Accounting Direction – the Regulator of Social Housing is proposing revisions to the accounting direction to align with the new Value for Money Standard and to reflect other changes. The consultation closes on 20th December 2018.

Private shared homeownership: call for proposalsclosing on 1st February 2019, the Government announced in the 2018 Budget that it is inviting proposals from investors willing to collaborate with government to deliver a new wave of shared ownership homes.

Planning reform: supporting the high street and increasing the delivery of new homes – the Government is consulting on high street planning, including a more flexible and responsive ‘change of use’ regime with new Permitted Development Rights, closing on 14 January 2019.

Changes to planning policy and guidance including the standard method for assessing local housing need – closing on 7th December 2018, the Government is consulting on proposals to update planning practice guidance on housing need assessment.


2. The Law Commission’s 13th Programme of Law Reform: Residential leasehold and commonhold
As part of its programme examining the law of commonhold and leasehold, the Law Commission is currently looking at leasehold enfranchisement in a mammoth consultation closing on 7th January 2019 and seeks responses on its provisional proposals for a new enfranchisement regime.


3. HCLG Select Committee Inquiries
The HCLG Committee’s leasehold reform inquiry looking at the progress made on the Government’s programme of reform is ongoing. It has heard oral evidence from leaseholders, campaigners, developers and freeholders. A transcript of the latest session available here.


4. Look ahead Consultations envisaged under the 2018 Budget
In the 2018 budget the Chancellor trailed a couple of future consultation:
Reform lettings relief so that it only applies in circumstances where the owner of the property is in shared occupancy – the Government will consult on proposals to better target private residence relief at owner occupiers, from April 2020.
Consultation on SDLT charge for non-residents – The government will publish a consultation in January 2019 on a SDLT surcharge of 1% for non-residents buying residential property in England and Northern Ireland.

Robert Flint responds to consultations on behalf of industry. He is also a partner at a UK law firm with a background working as an adviser to a Government minister. Click here to get in touch if you would like further information on any of the items above.

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