News

November 2016

ALEP echoes The Conveyancing Association’s calls to streamline and simplify the leasehold sales process

The Association of Leasehold Enfranchisement Practitioners (ALEP) fully endorses The Conveyancing Association’s call to "Amend the Commonhold and Leasehold Reform Act 2002 to resolve the unreasonable cost and delay now associated with the leasehold sales process."

This follows The Conveyancing Association’s white paper on ‘ Modernising the Home Moving Process’. The report examines the constraints the home moving process entails and provides guidance and ideas on how this procedure can be streamlined to create a "more certain and transparent process".

It also highlights its "vision of a data sharing, collaborative, digital home moving service", suggesting a move like this would be welcomed  by consumers and industry professionals alike, with the aim being to "achieve a more positive home moving experience".

The report’s Executive Summary suggests the Commonhold and Leasehold Reform Act 2002 should be amended to ensure reasonable fees and clamp down on duplicate fees in the presence of ‘multiple administrators’.

In addition, The Conveyancing Association is also calling for the Land Registry to hold a Lease Administrator’s Register to make it easier to locate the correct person or body and avoid delays.

Alex Greenslade, ALEP’s Director and Honorary Secretary, said: "ALEP welcomes The Conveyancing Association’s calls for the leasehold process to be made more open and transparent for leaseholders and to reduce instances where excessive fees are charged.

"Indeed, ALEP has provided vital input to a number of government consultations and offers advice and guidance on leasehold and enfranchisement legislation. ALEP is ready to work with Government and our members to help to modernise the home moving process for leasehold flat owners and purchasers."

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October 2016

Bennet Griffin of Worthing joins ALEP

Bennet Griffin of Worthing joins ALEP

Bennett Griffin was established in Worthing, West Sussex, in 1990 following the merger of two existing local solicitor practices.  Bennet Griffin pride themselves in providing both corporate and individual clients with expert, effective and timely advice.

By consistently offering unequalled service Bennett Griffin LLP has been able to grow as a practice and now have over 50 staff providing expertise and specialist advice in a wide range of legal services.

Along with membership of ALEP, Bennett Griffin’s legal expertise is affirmed by various accreditations awarded by external bodies, including the Law Society’s Quality Conveyancing standard.  Bennett Griffin have also been awarded the Lexcel Practice Management Standard from the Law Society and hold the Investors in People Bronze Award.

Bennett Griffin’s Leasehold Enfranchisement Team has extensive knowledge of this complex area of law, and is experienced in acting for both Freeholders and Leaseholders.

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19th ALEP conference attracts the sector's best of the best

19th ALEP conference attracts the sector's best of the best

On Monday 10th October 2016, the Association of Leasehold Enfranchisement Practitioners (ALEP) was proud to host its 19th conference at the Royal Institute of
British Architects (RIBA), Portland Place, London.

With a delegate list of the leasehold enfranchisement sector’s top players, the conference attracted a host of ALEP members including barristers, managing agents, project managers,
solicitors and valuers. The conference was, once again, sponsored by partner, Kerry London.

The conference – officially ALEP’s most successful to date – gave some of the sector’s leading
practitioners a platform from which to deliver high quality and informative presentations to an audience of more than 300 professionals.

There were many highlights of the conference including Knight Frank’s Tom Bill delivering an enlightening and engaging presentation on the residential outlook for Prime Central London. Here,
Tom examined the effects Brexit may have on the market and the impact politics has on prime London property.

Other standout moments from the conference included the breakout sessions, particularly Gary Murphy of Allsop and Mark Chick of Bishop & Sewell, who delivered an insight into how to value a Section 5 Notice.  As a result of the outcome and debate sparked from this presentation, a sector working group is set to be formed to discuss the topic further.

Sebastian Verity and James Culley – both from Knight Frank – rounded off the presentations with
their take on statistically assessing relativity, hedonic regression and relativity curves. This session was well received by delegates and, in fact, sparked the most post-conference debate.

Interactive voting was reintroduced at this conference, and proved very popular with delegates as it allowed them to get involved and share their opinions on questions posed by presenters.

When asked how the Brexit vote has affected delegates’ business, 23% stated negatively and 51% stated it was too early to tell.

Another statistic from the interactive voting highlighted 66% of the audience said there is a need for a statistical method of assessing relativity.  Indeed, 65% of delegates said ‘less clarity’ when asked if the Upper Tribunal’s Mundy decision provided more clarity on relativity, or made it harder to advise clients.

Furthermore, 81% of delegates agreed that relativity should vary according to location, e.g. a
property in the North West of England should conform to a different ‘relativity curve’ than a property in Belgravia.

Alex Greenslade, ALEP’s Honorary Secretary, said: “We are delighted with the feedback delegates have provided us on the variety and content of this, our best-selling conference to date. Each breakout session was well attended and it was great to see lively debates sparking up between practitioners and their peers – which continued well into the evening. We’re looking forward to 2017 and our 20th conference and gala dinner to celebrate ALEP’s decade at the forefront of enfranchisement!”

 

The 20th conference
and celebratory gala dinner will be held on 23rd March 2017 at RIBA.
For more information please visit http://www.alep.org.uk/events

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Save the Date:Thursday 23 March 2017

Save the Date:Thursday 23 March 2017

ALEP will be celebrating ten years at the forefront of enfranchisement with a celebratory 20th conference and gala dinner on Thursday 23rd March 2017.

Please make sure you save the date for this exciting event and return to these pages for updates.

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August 2016

ARMA announces new Independent Regulator

ARMA announces new Independent Regulator

ARMA (the Association of Residential Managing Agents) is delighted to announce the appointment of former government minister Sally Keeble as its new Independent Regulator. Sally will chair the Regulatory Panel which oversees ARMA members and determines disciplinary outcomes of cases involving member firms.

 ARMA is the leading trade association for residential leasehold managing agents in England and Wales. It works to achieve the highest standards of leasehold property management and campaigns for improvements in legislation and policy for the benefit of consumers. The Regulator and Panel are operationally independent of ARMA and the Association has no power to intervene in its affairs.

As government minister Sally had responsibility for social exclusion and housing and has enjoyed a varied and highly successful career in senior positions, including council leader of the London Borough of Southwark. As a minister Sally took the Commonhold and Leasehold Reform Act 2002 through Parliament, and most recently held a senior role in international development.

Current Independent Regulator, the Rt Hon Keith Hill, said: “The calibre of applicants as exceptionally high and Sally is expertly placed to take over a role which is crucial for the standing and integrity of the independent status of the Panel.”

Sally will take up the appointment in November 2016 when Keith stands down after three years in the role.

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Hart Brown joins ALEP

Hart Brown Solicitors have been established since 1919 and now have 16 partners and over 110 staff across 6 offices in Surrey and London. Hart Brown have a reputation for delivering quality legal services with their clients at the heart of everything they do. Hart Brown have recently appointed Emily Fitzpatrick as head of their new Leasehold Enfranchisement Department and she joins as a partner of the firm.  Emily has almost 11 years experience in the enfranchisement and lease reform sector. She won Regional Professional of the Year in the Enfranchisement and Right to Manage Awards 2015 run by News on the Block and was a finalist in the Solicitor of the Year category in the 2016 awards. Emily was also listed in the 2015 Hot 100 most influential people in the leasehold reform sector 2015 by News on the Block.

Hart Brown can assist with matters relating to collective enfranchisement, lease extensions, right to manage claims, claims involving missing landlords, right of first refusals issues, service charges disputes and other management issues.

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Congratulations to Jefferies Essex LLP - Property Team of the Year!

Congratulations to Jefferies Essex LLP - Property Team of the Year!

Jefferies Essex LLP – one of the latest firms to join ALEP - has been named Property Team of the Year at The Modern Law Conveyancing Awards 2016.  

The awards, which were held in Liverpool on 14 July, recognise law firms and conveyancing experts across the UK. 

Sarah Mitchell, Managing Partner, Jefferies Solicitors, commented “This is a fantastic achievement for Jefferies and the whole firm is incredibly proud of our leasehold enfranchisement team.  I would like to praise our Leasehold Specialists, Amelia Hayes and Callie Tuplin, for all the work they do within this area of law; their expertise, passion and dedication have shone through and resulted in national recognition.”  

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July 2016

ALEP announces autumn conference line-up

ALEP announces autumn conference line-up

ALEP's autumn conference is taking place on Monday 10 October 2016 at the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA), Portland Place, London W1B 1AD.

Anna Bailey, Director of ALEP, said: “Once again we are looking forward to hosting an exceptional line up of speakers delivering insightful presentations on all aspects of leasehold.  This conference will also provide delegates with greater opportunities for debate and discussion on current issues with their peers and leading lights in the sector.

“ALEP’s Honorary President, Damian Greenish will be hosting this our 19th conference, with guest speakers from Knight Frank, Tanfield Chambers and Devereaux Chambers” taking to the RIBA stage.

Presentation subjects include:

  • Taxation issues on freehold acquisitions and lease extensions
  • London residential market overview
  • Leasehold case update
  • A review of statistical methods of assessing relativity

The autumn conference will also see the return of the breakout sessions, which are back by popular demand. These sessions provide delegates with the chance to learn more about and debate the finer details surrounding the Leasehold Reform Act 1967, the Leasehold Reform (Amendment) Act 2014, Section 5 notices and the importance of robust terms and conditions in professional practice.

Guests will also be invited to join the hosts for a complimentary drinks reception immediately after the conference.

The conference is open to members and non-members and delegates who book by Friday 16 September 2016 will be honoured with a 20% discount.

For more information and details on how to book please visit http://www.alep.org.uk/events

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ALEP celebrates 200th member milestone

The ALEP is proud to announce Leasehold Assist has joined as its 200th member.

Leasehold Assist is a firm of Chartered Surveyors specialising in the valuation and negotiation of residential lease extensions and freehold purchases throughout England and Wales.

Created in 2007 by Alex Greenslade and Anna Bailey of Leasehold Solutions, ALEP set out to bring together organisations working within the leasehold enfranchisement sector to promote best practice and provide a badge of assurance for leaseholders and freeholders.  Member firms include barristers, managing agents, project managers, solicitors, and valuers, and all undergo a thorough vetting process prior to becoming members.

Alex Greenslade, Founder and Director of ALEP, said, “The signing of our 200th member is proof that the Association we set up almost ten years ago is thriving and going from strength to strength. We are proud to have built a network of steadfast member firms that lead the field in their profession and represent excellence within the leasehold and enfranchisement sector.”

ALEP has attracted many of the sector’s big players, including Knight Frank, Savills and Pemberton Greenish. ALEP’s members offer unbiased, qualified advice to leaseholders and freeholders alike. ALEP also aims to raise awareness about issues leaseholders may face.

Director, Anna Bailey, said, “We are delighted to welcome our 200th landmark member to the Association. ALEP’s main aim is to act as a kitemark and maintain standards within the leasehold enfranchisement sector. We’ve experienced continual growth over the last ten years and are thrilled that ALEP is recognised as being at the forefront of leasehold enfranchisement.”

Last year marked another significant achievement for ALEP and its members, as the Association successfully influenced a government consultation on court fees and in 2014 lobbied the government over leasehold reform, which resulted in the amendment to the Act.

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Nockolds Solicitors joins ALEP

Nockolds Solicitors is a long established professional legal practice with roots tracing back to 1831. Since that time the firm has continued to grow and adapt with society to become an award-winning and recommended law firm. The firm has expanded as a business according to the wishes of the clients and Nockolds is proud to work locally, nationally and internationally with offices in Bishop’s Stortford and London. Nockolds is able to offer tailored and cost effective advice to landlords and tenants on all aspects of enfranchisement claims and matters affecting mixed use buildings.

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