Millions of flat owners stuck with unsafe homes after Grenfell

Dangerous buildings with cladding like Grenfell Tower are costing homeowners millions of pounds per year, it has been revealed.

About four million people in apartments with unsafe cladding are affected, figures show.

And more than a million flat-owners are having to pay £2.2billion a year for safety measures and special insurance.


The apartments have become unsellable and repair bills are costing families up to £115,000 to fix the fire traps, it has been claimed.

The move has caused a newspaper campaign for repairs to be completed by June 2022, and for the government to be providing funding up front as soon as possible. Firms responsible for safety failures should also be made to contribute.

Tory MPs Stephen McPartland and Royston Smith are leading a backbench rebellion to ensure leaseholders do not have to pay for repairs.

Legislation to overhaul building and fire safety standards is expected to return to Parliament by the end of the month. The Draft Building Safety Bill, one of two on the issue, leaves leaseholders liable for the cost of fixing historical safety defects.

Hundreds of thousands of leaseholders in unsafe flats face average bills of £40,000 – and some of up to £115,000 – to replace dangerous cladding, similar to that found on Grenfell Tower in west London, where an inferno killed 72 people in June 2017.

Mr McPartland, the MP for Stevenage in Hertfordshire, said: “This is shocking evidence of leaseholders being left behind with many being forced into bankruptcy. The Government has to step in and provide a safety net.

“It's time [Housing Secretary] Robert Jenrick got out of his ivory tower, stopped talking and started helping.”

A Government spokesman said work was ‘complete or under way’ in 84 per cent of high-rise buildings with Grenfell-style cladding, although this does not include thousands of buildings with other types of dangerous defects.


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