Council takeover no better for New Build Tax

This Sunday Times Article from 24th February 2019 exposes just how expensive the private managed estate model is, no matter who collects the “tax”. A large “new town” development in Devon with a high proportion of affordable housing caused such concern for the local town council about non-payment (or non affordability?) of the estate fees that it took over the rent charge and manages it via a very large precept on the council tax – around ¬£370 per year!

Although this scenario is unusual in our experience as most new build developments have either a private company or a housing association managing them, we do feel it highlights the need for developments to be constructed to adoption standards and adopted by the council in the very beginning. This avoids sub standard construction which is expensive to keep up, gives the council an advance from the developers for the first 10-20 years maintenance and gets rid of a huge volume of unnecessary legal expenses and delays due to the involvement of a management company with every single home when it is bought, sold or remortgaged.

Read the article here


Times Article 11th August 2018

Entitled “The Potholes and Pitfalls of Life on an Unadopted Road” this article is about the modern managed private estates with some case studies of the difficulties home owners face. Home Owners Rights is promoted and the petition we support to make adoption of estates compulsory.

Read the article here.

Please support all estate home owners by signing this government petition. We only need a few hundred more signatures for the government to respond….

The Times December 23rd

Another article about estate management fees which rise in an uncontrolled way with no cap and as yet no right of appeal for freehold home owners  The government have announced access to the first tier Lands Tribunal. It remains to be seen if this will be a practical option for private estate management service charge disputes. The comments and replies to this article are worth a look as well.

Members Quotes from FaceBook

This is a selection of partially anonymised quotes from our closed FaceBook group. It gives a range of views and experiences from across the UK. We have many members who could provide case studies for news articles:

On our estate, we maintain the areas but the Council set up an S106 to give the public access – grass areas and woodland. Therefore we pay to clear their litter and damage. I feel they have been hand-in-glove with developers, taking a “bribe” of cash injections for playgrounds etc. and facilitating this scam to make freehold home owners pay to maintain.
SS, Braintree
Continue reading “Members Quotes from FaceBook”


Official Response

You can read our response to the Government consultation on unfair practices here, or download a pdf – consultation .

We argue that the government does not know the scale of the problem, nor the effects of how the model is implemented and ask for a complete review rather than the sticking plaster approach of access to the First Tier Tribunal.


BBC R4 You and Yours

Listen to a HorNet member talking about the impact of costly poor maintenance and lack of consumer rights with support from her neighbours. Our first national broadcast with an analysis from Paula Higgins from the Home Owners Alliance. A big step in raising awareness of the estate maintenance scam and the first of many.

Broadcast on 26th June 2017 and available here: