Time to contact your MP – Homes Fit For Habitation

As I may have reminded you once or twice already (and no doubt will again), the second reading of Karen Buck MP’s Homes (Fitness for Human Habitation and Liability for Housing Standards) Bill is on 19 January 2018. This is a private members bill. It is very rare for private bills to become law, mostly because of […]

Fitness for Habitation 2.0 – Q&A and call to arms

If you haven’t already heard, Karen Buck MP got fourth place in the 2017 ballot for private members bills. And she has taken this opportunity to bring forward a new version of the ‘Fitness for Habitation’ Bill that was filibustered in 2015 (and then was voted down as an amendment to the Housing and Planning […]

Legal Aid: Rights, wrongs and the Lord Chancellor

I wrote at some length about legal aid, tenants rights and Grenfell Tower here (the third of the ‘myths’). Sara Stephens (my esteemed colleague – full disclosure) also explained the situation in a Legal Voice article here. But still it rumbles on, including from two people who really should know better, as quoted in this […]

Perception of doors*

Southwark Council v Various Lessees of the St Saviours Estate [2017] UKUT 10 (LC) (Full disclosure – my firm acted for the Lessees). The issue in this Upper Tribunal case was whether LB Southwark was entitled charge the leaseholders for works to replace communal doors and front entrance doors carried out during fire safety improvement […]

Tales of the private sector

A collation of cases and stories from the private sector, and a series of reminders that a database of rogue landlords, and indeed banning orders, can’t come soon enough. In Sheffield, John Cashin was convicted of 56 offences involving HMO management, failure to provide information, failure to licence and property conditions: Five properties, on Abbeydale […]

Works and quiet enjoyment

Timothy Taylor Ltd v Mayfair House Corporation & Anor [2016] EWHC 1075 (Ch) I’m very late with this one – been in the ‘to do’ pile for ages. In mitigation, it is a commercial property case, but has interesting elements on the way in which building works may be reasonably carried out. Timothy Taylor ran […]

Of online courts and unified enforcement

Lord Justice Briggs’ final Review of the Civil Court Structure has been published. The main part of the report is of course the proposals for the new ‘online court’ – a costs free and litigant in person form of tribunal, heavily aimed at forms of ADR. The news for housing is that there is now […]

Bannisters that never were.

You wait for 4 years for another case on bannisters and the Defective Premises Act 1972 and then two come along at once… Sternbaum v Dhesi [2016] EWCA Civ 155 Dodd v Raebarn Estates Ltd & Ors [2016] EWHC 262 (QB) Both can be dealt with fairly quickly and together, as the courts follow the […]