I am the head of the firm's London Housing team and specialise in housing and care. I focus on property finance, development and due diligence work for mergers and general governance work, acting for registered providers, care providers, lenders and others operating within the housing and care sectors. My team and I have been involved in many major property developments, estate regeneration projects and asset property management work, as well as transfers of housing estates between registered providers and merger transactions. Our work on the property finance side includes acting for lenders in reviewing properties being placed into charge by over 100 borrowers as well as acting for a number of borrowers directly.
She is excellent, very thorough and gives very detailed advice. She is exceptionally good at distilling risk and breaking it down, very proactive in suggesting what needs to be done and is just incredibly comprehensive.
I undertake a full range of property, property finance, development, constitutional and charity work for many social housing providers. I have most recently been involved in:
- Acquisition and Development Agreement and airspace leases, and then the novation of the Development Agreement to Mount Anvil upon the developer running into difficulties for 70 affordable housing units at Eagle House which transaction included a bank guarantee, direct agreement and securing payment of liquidated and ascertained damages. My work also included several variations to the S106 Agreement for the development.
- Acquisition of 3 parcels of land to compile a development site in Islington from separate sellers, one transaction being the acquisition of company owning the property rather than the property itself. Dealing with all S106 and S278 Agreements in respect of the whole development.
- Acquisition of 58 affordable housing units in Essex via a Development Agreement on a phased basis. Bespoke drafting required on conditionality to get to exchange before the developer's financial year end and so as to protect client on title defects.
- Putting into place a bespoke Development Agreement for affordable housing for a redevelopment of a former post office site with adjacent land, the terms of which are very unusual and do not conform to usual development terms. Drafting to deal with change of planning, unit mix, timing of grant of leases, payment of funds and escrow arrangements and conditionality.
- Advising in the setting up of a subsidiary for a registered provider in order to separate from the parent a particular activity of its business. This involved setting up a new company and providing advice to the client in the areas of corporate, tax, employment, pension and regulatory and charity law. Membership of the social housing pension scheme was amongst the issues considered.
- Acting in respect of a property being charged by a large number of borrowing registered providers to secure loan facilities in excess of £500 million based throughout Scotland and England.
Wendy Wilks is very considered and gives clear advice on findings – including risks and opportunities. She is very efficient and has shown significant understanding and support for us as a client – regularly monitoring and supporting us by highlighting actions and next steps. Her level of detail focus has given us significant confidence on a very high profile and complex transaction.