9:55 AM, 9th March 2020, About 2 years ago 3
We are in the process of selling a leasehold flat, and have been asked to provide an EWS1 form which, in brief, confirms that the block is compliant with the safety regs that came into force after Grenfell. Without this, the value of the flat is essentially zero, because the lender won’t lend, because insurers won’t insure.
Until Dec last year, this only applied to buildings over 18 meters high. As of Jan this year, it now applies to, amongst other things, HMOs.
There is a big shortage of acceptable fire safety surveyors. The difficulty is compounded by an increase in PII premiums for both mortgage valuers and fire surveyors. Reportedly, it can be 6-12 months to even get a fire survey done. If the building is not compliant, then remedial work must be carried out.
So, apart from the fact that our sale may well fall through, it may well be that freeholders, and the owners of HMOs might have difficulty in obtaining block insurance at renewal, which is presumably a breach of the obligations under the lease.
Would it also effectively avoid the tenancy agreement?
Has anyone else come across this? I can’t find any central register of high rise blocks which have demonstrated compliance under the previous system (AN14). At least if we could find out whether the block was compliant under the AN14 system, we would have some hope of the new EWS1 form being filled in by the relevant surveyor.
In the meantime, yet another concern for HMO owners.
This only raised it’s ugly head this afternoon, so we have only just got our head round precisely what to request from the freeholder/managing agents.
More unintended consequences, methinks.
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