Post Covid-19: A New Beginning – Out with Residential Leasehold

Low Fell resident Alan Gowers is campaigning for reform the law of on freeholds.  Mr Gowers and his neighbours discovered that the owner of the Freehold on their properties was changed without any notification being given to them.  They are now campaigning for Freeholds to be ended in England and Wales as they have been in Scotland and the Low Fell councillors are supporting his campaign.  Mr Gowers article on this is below:

”We don’t know yet exactly how drastic the changes to our future economy will be as result of Covid-19 and all the containment actions – but expect them to be huge. There will be a substantial restructuring – will there be any airlines, pubs, hairdressers left?

There will also be changes in attitudes to health, work and our general society values. Our whole society must get back to giving true and honest added value if there is to be a real and fair return to prosperity in Britain.

Pre – Covid-19 Britain was misguidedly tolerant of the growth of the rentier1 capitalists i.e. those who exploit their access to property and gain considerable prosperity without making any real contribution to society. The worst rentier examples are the freeholders who are allowed by law and custom to exploit their leaseholders almost at will. In this, the Law Society, the Bar Standards Board, the Law Commission and the Government have been keen to uphold the human rights of landlords but much less keen on restoring the natural  rights2 of tenants and leaseholders. In Post Covid -19 this all needs to change and in fact the complete abolishment of residential leases is the ideal solution. The rentiers lease income needs to be distributed back to leaseholders and their local economies, as well as giving back leaseholders their freehold titles and control of their affairs. Another bonus will be that developers can devote all their ingenuity to designing and delivering good value housing rather than over exploiting land values.

“Take back control” & “get things done”.  We, the public and our political representatives, must play our part and demand the abolishment of leasehold in England & Wales – as is indeed already achieved in Scotland. We must also demand better standards and quality regulations throughout the residential sector. These are sensible and reasonable demands that are achievable and highly beneficial for our Post – Covid-19 Society.
1. Rentier capitalism is a term currently used to describe the belief in economic practices of monopolization of access to any (physical, financial, intellectual, etc.) kind of property, and gaining significant amounts of profit without contribution to society. 2. Natural rights. The philosopher John Locke defined the natural rights every person should have as the rights to life, liberty, and property”.

Alan Gowers