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Welsh Government introduces leaseholder support scheme covering fire safety issues

04 July 2022

AN ALL-new support scheme devised by the Welsh Government to assist those suffering significant financial hardship as a result of fire safety issues having been identified at the buildings in which they reside was launched on Monday 27 June.

In essence, the support scheme will provide tailored and independent advice to leaseholders in affected homes. It’s currently targeted at leaseholders who are owner occupiers and those who’ve become displaced residents, but climate change minister Julie James has confirmed that applications will be monitored and eligibility kept under review to ensure “those who need support” have access to the scheme.

James commented: “The Leaseholder Support Scheme will help those who need assistance the most. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the external partners and sector experts who’ve assisted us in developing this scheme at pace. Their support and hard work has been critical to establishing the right qualifying criteria and support processes.”

All leaseholders eligible for this scheme will receive advice from an independent financial advisor, with the costs fully covered by the Welsh Government. The advice will support them in making the right choice for them and, if the sale of their property is the right route to take, the Welsh Government will enable them to sell their property at a fair market value.

Julie James went on to note: “Addressing fire safety defects in medium and high-rise buildings must go beyond cladding to make these buildings as safe as they can be. This has been our premise from the outset and, although it makes identifying, addressing and resolving issues significantly more complex, it’s the right approach to approach.”

Further, James observed: “There are no quick or easy fixes, but we cannot compromise on achieving the right sustainable solutions. Anything less leaves the door open to the risk of further issues arising. It’s important to me that, once these fire safety-related issues are resolved, they remain resolved. We must do this properly, making sure that everything’s right now and for the future.”

*Detailed guidance on the new scheme, including the eligibility criteria, has now been published on the Welsh Government’s website along with an application form