Property transactions are being hit with new "coronavirus clauses". If there are complications after exchanging contracts, such as a person not being able to move or losing a mortgage offer, these allow the completion date to be delayed or a party to pull out of the purchase. Builds will be particularly affected, as completion dates after exchange are often not set and can be months in the future, and Andrew Boast of SAM Conveyancing said coronavirus clauses should be the norm in new-build sales.
The Daily Telegraph (19/06/2020)
The government has confirmed it is to extend planning permission deadlines under new measures to stimulate the building of thousands of new homes as the UK emerges from the COVID-19 lockdown. Under the changes announced by Robert Jenrick, planning approvals with an expiry date between the start of lockdown in March and the end of this year will be extended to 1 April 2021. Existing planning rules mean that development permissions usually expire after three years if work has not been started. However, hundreds of projects with expiry dates during the lockdown period were put in jeopardy. It said the changes would help these developments to resume as the economy recovers.
The Guardian (22/06/2020)
Canary Wharf Group has completed 10 Park Drive, its first private sale residential building, at Wood Wharf on the Isle of Dogs. Since launching in 2015, only 70 apartments remain at the development, with current purchasers set to move in through June. The remaining one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments are available from £900,000. Residents will have access to a private sky terrace on the 13th floor, with bookable facilities and free use of shared spaces. Purchasers also have access to a state-of-the-art new health and fitness club, in partnership with luxury fitness lifestyle brand Third Space. The space includes a swimming pool, jacuzzi, sauna, steam room and fitness class studio.
Property Funds World (18/06/2020)
Regeneration specialist Hadley Property Group has completed the purchase of its largest site to date, Blackwall Yard in east London, from Thomson Reuters. The 4.2 acre riverfront site, which sits near Canary Wharf and faces the o2 Arena across the Thames, will be transformed into a new neighbourhood with 850 homes - a mix of affordable and market sale - a primary school, shops, cafés and a sustainable transport hub.Hadley plans to reveal details of its proposals, which also include converting the Blackwall Yard Graving Dock, closed to the public for more than 50 years, into an outdoor swimming pool, at a series of digital consultation events early next month.
Property Week (18/06/2020)
Campaigners are making a last-ditch attempt to halt a £1.2bn scheme to build a new four-lane tunnel under the River Thames. They will write to the oversight committee at the Greater London Authority asking for an urgent review, claiming the project will be environmentally destructive and cripplingly expensive. However, supporters of the tunnel, which would connect the Greenwich peninsula to West Silvertown, say it will ease congestion at Blackwall Tunnel, provide better access to jobs and services, and improve the resilience of the road network in response to developments in Greenwich and the Royal Docks.
The Observer (14/06/2020)
Conveyancing expert Osbornes Law says that now could be the perfect time to think about buying a property, as homebuying transactions are at a 15-year low and property prices are predicted to fall between five and 10%. Head of residential property Simon Nosworthy said vendors are dropping prices on deals agreed before the pandemic to push through a sale, while buyers can access cheap mortgage finance. “This is the ideal scenario for first-time buyers or those waiting to pick up potential bargains," he said. However, some buyers may hold back fearing that the market could crash if unemployment soars after the Government furlough scheme ends. However, Mr Nosworthy added: "High demand for housing and lack of supply makes this less likely, while today's low mortgage rates should sustain the market in the longer run."
Sunday Express (14/06/2020)