Taylor Wimpey sets aside £130m to help customers trapped in its own “scandalous” leasehold contracts
- Credit: PA
Taylor Wimpey is to set aside £130m as part of plans to help customers trapped in onerous leasehold contracts drawn up by the national housebuilder.
Following a review of lease agreements struck over the past decade, the company also issued an apology for the 'unintended financial consequence and concern' for what MPs dubbed the 'PPI of the housebuilding industry'.
Leaseholders were forced to stomach ground rents that doubled every 10 years and the freeholds to their houses were able to be sold to third party private firms, making many homes unsaleable.
The firm said: 'This lease structure was introduced by Taylor Wimpey in good faith in 2007.
'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.'
The move follows a House of Commons debate on leasehold reform last year, when MPs called the situation 'nothing short of a national scandal'.
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Taylor Wimpey said it has entered into negotiations with the owners of the freeholds who hold the power to double ground rent in order to alter the terms of the lease to 'materially less expensive ground rent review terms'.
The group said it will bear the financial cost of doing so and, in the event that it is not able to reach agreement with freeholders, Taylor Wimpey will continue to pursue 'other avenues' to help customers.