More Scottish flats ‘worthless’ with the roll out of post-Grenfell cladding rules, warns expert

Cladding rules introduced in the wake of the Grenfell Tower tragedy have made thousands of Scottish properties “worthless”, with new legislation set to exacerbate the issue, according to an estate agent.

Struan Douglas, MD of Purdie & Co, cited a logjam due to new rules. Picture: Contributed

The guidance has seen home reports place a zero value on properties in buildings measuring six storeys or higher without an official certificate confirming that the cladding does not pose a fire risk.

However, apartment blocks in Scotland, including tenement buildings, are co-owned by tenants and managed by factors. Insurers will not provide cover for home reports addressed to all co-owners and factors cannot commission a report without approval from all co-owners in a block.

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The has created a logjam where some apartment owners are unable to sell their homes as they are valued as worthless, according to Struan Douglas, MD of solicitor and estate agent Purdie & Co.

He fears the situation will be exacerbated when the Scottish Government introduces legislation for cladding on buildings of four storeys or higher.

Douglas said: “In some apartment blocks, people who want to sell their flats are faced with having to approach more than 30 other owners to get them to agree to commission a joint home report.

“There’s no incentive for factor to become involved unless they charge an additional fee and for homeowners not looking to sell, there’s no great desire to pay.”

The guidance applies to all cladding materials including the version used on Grenfell Tower, in which 72 people died following a fire in June 2017.

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