Lunchtime news Friday 15 August 2023

Repossession orders are up 24 per cent from the same time as last year in England and Wales, and 4 per cent on the previous quarter, according to latest figures from the Ministry of Justice. Meanwhile mortgage possession claims jumped 17 per cent in the first quarter of 2015, compared with a year ago.

The new local government network (NLGN) is lobbying support from local councils in a bid to persuade the government to allow councils to offer mortgages. It hopes that this will help stave off repossessions and evictions, prop up the housing market and support first-time buyers to buy locally. Under the scheme the NLGN is calling on the government to allocate £2 billion to local councils who could support certain groups, such as first time buyers or those in mortgage difficulties.

The Law Commission has warned that too many properties in the private rented sector are in poor condition or badly managed. The third of a series of reports by the Law Commission, looking at the effectiveness of housing law, stated that the poor reputation of the sector prevented it from paying a full part in national and local housing markets, while few landlords belonged to a representative body which could then be overseen by a central regulator. The report also called for a single code of housing management practice for landlords.

Hundreds of thousands of people are to lose the right to complain about noise, pollution or disruption caused by major infrastructure projects under the new planning Bill. Lacors, which oversees the councils’ environmental protection work, has written to the local government minister expressing concern that clause 151 means that once development has been given the go-ahead, councils are unable to act on complaints from local people regarding nuisance caused by noise, odour, light or any other type of pollution.

Developers are coming up with a range of incentives designed to lure people into buying a home. A new car, cash, free gas and electricity for years, paying stamp duty, guaranteeing rental income and even offering to buy your existing home are some of the incentives housebuilders are using alongside price cuts of up to 40 per cent. Analysts are warning that some incentives can affect the valuation a mortgage lender gives for your home.

And finally, more homeless people are bedding down at Heathrow airport each night, than in most London boroughs, Broadway estimates. During a 10-night period it found on an average night up to 30 homeless people are sleeping rough at the airport compared with an average of 24 people in the boroughs.