Our national team of over 25 partners work extensively across the housing sector, bringing informed and pragmatic solutions to the challenges and opportunities that our clients face.
We have clients across the spectrum of organisations engaged in housing and regeneration:
- Registered providers
- Local authorities
- Private sector developers
We offer a complete service; able to support all clients on all all legal issues relating to the following matters: governance and corporate; funding and treasury; property and development; procurement and commercial; and tenant and leaseholder management.
But importantly, we offer more than just legal expertise. We offer an in-depth understanding of the housing market accumulated over decades of specialising in the sector.
Knowledge of market positions; what works and what doesn't; how technology could improve and reduce costs of legal services; what opportunities there could be in the market; what partnerships and introductions could add value to our clients.
As well as understanding this across the different client groups in the sector, we have expertise in key related fields such as health & social care and energy markets, providing us with a unique perspective and position as a law firm to bring more than just the law to our clients.
Our innovative work with local authorities and health bodies in public procurement and regulation means that we can help registered providers structure and deliver the commercial opportunities to partner with other public sector partners. For example, we are market leaders advising on the setting up of joint ventures and housing delivery vehicles (for the development and/or ownership of open market, private rented, temporary accommodation as well as social housing).
We advised Brighton & Hove City Council upon their c.£170m corporate joint venture with Hyde Housing Group to deliver 1,000 new homes, being one of the first such partnerships of its kind and scale in the country, and expected to be a model followed by others. Places for People and Urban Splash on their corporate joint venture with Birmingham City Council and the Canal & River Trust for the regeneration of the Icknield Port Loop development to deliver over 1,150 homes, other community facilities and infrastructure.
We are well-placed to support Compliance and Governance requirements in an environment of increasing commercialisation and de-regulation. We help register provider and local authority clients pursue commercial opportunities for growth whilst core social housing assets are protected. For example, how social rented housing and private rented housing incorporate a commercial investment asset portfolio with different standards apply to these different asset categories and we will be able to help clients put in place appropriate systems to enable their businesses to operate as freely as they can to compete with market competitors which do not have such complexity in their operating models.
We assisted 30+ Local Authorities in the set-up and funding of housing delivery vehicles, including a number of RSH-registered provider subsidiaries for the reinvestment of RTB receipts into social housing.
Our clients are increasingly requiring support for effective service charge collection. This is an area where the law is complicated and heavily regulated by statute. We have provided bespoke training to clients on this area. We have also developed a bespoke, highly competitive fixed fee solution to enable recoveries to be outsourced with confidence and cost certainty.
We advise both Housing Associations and Local Authorities on issues, including the introduction of fixed term tenancies, "pay to stay" arrangements, voluntary RTB, anti-social behaviour enforcement and rent repossession proceedings, as well as disrepair, service charge and succession disputes.
I am a property solicitor, working in Wendy Wilks' team. I primarily work on development transactions for Registered Providers, dealing with the acquisition of land and agreement of development agreements, together with advising on the associated planning and section 106 agreements.