Construction company Taylor Wimpey has apparently set aside £130 million to compensate homebuyers. This was after a wave of complaints regarding the possibility that their ground rent could double every ten years. These specific leases came with homes sold between 2007 and 2011.
The construction company stated that “it is clear from our review that the impact of these doubling rent review clauses is now causing some of our customers understandable concern.”
“We acknowledge that the introduction of these doubling clauses was not consistent with our high standards of customer service and we are sorry for the unintended financial consequence and concern that they are causing.”
Consequently, they are attempting to lower the costs for homeowners by altering the leases, at their own expense.
For one homeowner, Joanne Darbyshire, her ground rent began at £295 a year. However, if this is set to double every ten years, then in fifty years time, Joanne and her family could be forced to pay £9,440 a year in ground rent!
She stated: “Taylor Wimpey has been negligent in the onward sale of these freeholds, there was no due diligence and significant customer detriment.”
A spokesperson for the charity Leasehold Knowledge Partnership also stated: “homebuyers have been systematically cheated by Taylor Wimpey.”
“Homebuyers wanted homes and trusted a plc housebuilder.”
“Taylor Wimpey created an investment asset class – the freehold – which it then traded to anonymous and murky investors, who hide their beneficial ownership behind nominee directors.”
“This ground rent racket is wealth erosion on a massive scale, which has fallen mainly on young first-time buyers and their families.”
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