Housing

Houses in multiple occupation – new rules from October 2018

The regulations governing houses in multiple occupation (HMOs) changed on 1 October 2018. They will now extend to smaller properties, affecting more landlords. The rules on exactly what constitutes as an HMO are complex and failure to comply is an offence, so landlords must get specialist legal advice to make sure they stay within the…

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Service charges in shopping centres

The decision by entertainment retailer HMV to call in administrators follows the collapse of a number of high street firms in 2018, including Toys R Us and Maplins. Earlier in the year, asset management firm APAM estimated that roughly 200 shopping centres were in danger of falling into administration as a result of the domino effect…

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Southwark council can no longer avoid HMO rules when housing families in shared accommodation

Destitute families placed in shared houses and flats by social services should see their living conditions improved following a judicial review in the High Court. The case described below will mainly affect families who, because of their immigration status, cannot claim benefits or access mainstream housing, but whose applications to remain in the UK are…

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Are ‘no oral modification’ clauses effective in the event of a dispute?

As a general rule the courts try not to interfere in commercial contracts when a dispute arises as they rightly believe that businesses are best placed to negotiate the terms on which they will deal with each other and, save in very limited circumstances, that they should be bound by the deal they have struck….

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Good news as Barratt Developments agree to pay fire safety costs for Croydon tower block residents

Leaseholders of apartments in the Citiscape development breathe a sigh of relief as the original developer steps in to shoulder responsibility for the costs of replacement cladding and a fire warden. After Citiscape in Croydon failed safety tests due to the Grenfell-style cladding, residents were dismayed to learn that they would have to find the…

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