Following the tragic events at Grenfell Tower, fire and building safety has become one of the most pressing issues currently faced by leaseholders and the entire residential property sector.
Certain external cladding materials and external wall systems that contain flammable materials have been classed by the Government as being a fire risk. As a result, today’s building safety regulations require these systems and materials to be removed from blocks of buildings to protect the lives of the people who live in them.
The exact number of buildings affected and the scope and scale of the issues is still being established, given the extent of the problem. Applications to the Building Safety Fund have given some indication of the buildings that are most at risk. According to the latest Government figures, around 3,000 applications have been submitted so far.
Investigations carried out following the tragedy have revealed that numerous UK-wide buildings have been constructed, using Aluminium Composite Material (ACM) and other unsafe cladding. As a result, hundreds of buildings have been categorised as being unsafe, which is estimated to cost in the region of £15billion to rectify.
In March 2020, the Government created a £1.6billion Building Safety Fund to help leaseholders pay for the removal and replacement of unsafe ACM cladding on their high-rise buildings. In February 2021, it announced an additional £3.5billion in grants.
The funding covers removing and fixing flammable elements within external wall systems. It currently only applies to buildings that are taller than 18 metres and doesn’t cover the further secondary costs for other fire safety issues that exist within buildings.
The documents listed below under the resources header, are designed to provide you with an overview of the BSF. They provide answers to some of the most commonly-asked questions, as well as insight on the current situation, what is and isn’t currently covered by the BSF, the role and responsibilities of managing agents, plus more.