Small print in the latest announcement on cladding will still leave hundreds of Cambridge residents in limbo unable to sell their apartments.
The long-awaited announcement by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors had been sold as a way of unlocking the housing market for flat-owners.
But while the Government Minister welcomed the guidance, Cambridge MP Daniel Zeichner has urged caution.
Buildings of four storeys or fewer where there are ACM, MCM or High Pressure Laminate (HPL) panels on the building will still need to apply for the EWS1 form that most mortgage-lenders require. Many Cambridge buildings have HPL panels.
Meanwhile as part of the normal selling process, there will continue to be a sales pack that tells potential buyers all the information they need to make an informed decision on whether to buy the flat. This includes likely major works expenditure such as costs to remove cladding. There are no new guarantees on how mortgage lenders will treat this information and buyers are likely to remain reluctant to take on potential costs to change cladding in the future.
The Minister also said he “expects” building owners to pay for works on their buildings. However in some blocks of apartments in Cambridge the leaseholders jointly own the freehold.
Daniel Zeichner MP said: “I’m afraid we are seeing claims from the government that they have fixed the cladding crisis when the truth is that many people will remain trapped. We need a complete re-think about who is liable for the costs and for the government to sit down with mortgage lenders to unlock the housing market.”