May 22, 2018

Dear Mr Fenton: I don’t regret my purchase at Rosewood Court, but ‘leasehold is a rip-off’

Ken Playforth has enjoyed many benefits of living at the McCarthy and Stone site Rosewood Court, but claims his flat has fallen 60% in value since 2005

All re-sales at Rosewood Court should falls in value from new, with several down £50-£60,000.

The highest fall is flat 21 showing a fall from February 2004 to May 2017 of £81,500

Clive Fenton,
CEO, McCarthy & Stone

Dear Mr Fenton,

My late wife and I purchased a McCarthy & Stone retirement flat at Rosewood Court, Roundhay, Leeds in July 2004 but did not move in until April 2005.

I believe that there are two aspects when purchasing a retirement flat namely quality of life and financial implications.

If I can deal with the quality of life first. The main benefit is that you can, should you wish it, have regular contact with other residents or you can live in isolation.

When my late wife was ill I was extremely grateful for the help and support I received from my fellow residents. Now I am grateful for the many social activities which means that I am occupied five and sometimes six nights a week and one afternoon. I also take a neighbour out to explore Yorkshire once a week.

This started when he was given a days respite as carer for his wife and has continued even though she is now in a Nursing Home. I also organise weekly trips out for lunch and in the last year these have occurred more than forty times. Clearly my life is much better than if I had been living in a house or bungalow.

The financial aspect is far from beneficial. Sadly if I needed to sell my flat I would be lucky to receive sixty percent of the original purchase price. I hope this will not be necessary so it could be my son who would lose out. This suggests that McCarthy & Stone over priced the property in the first place and of course they benefitted from the sale of the leasehold to Fairhold Homes (no9) Ltd.

With the benefit of hindsight I now realise what a rip off leasehold is. The landlord benefits from ground rent, improvements payments and change of ownership payments and the fact that his/her property is maintained and insurance costs met without doing anything for the benefit of the leaseholders certainly in the thirteen years I have been a resident.

I therefore welcome the efforts of H M Government to make the system fairer.

Do I regret moving? The answer to this question is no as quality of life is much more important than financial gain.

I hope you find these comments of interest and I look forward to your response.

Yours sincerely,
Mr K.J.Playforth

Here is the Land Registry data on Rosewood Court, showing that all re-sales show a fall in value from new

Flat 35, Rosewood Court, Park Avenue, Leeds, LS8 2BL
2017-09-08 £90,250
2006-05-25 £151,950

Flat 1, Rosewood Court, 18 Park Avenue, Leeds, LS8 2BL
2005-03-31 £197,950

Flat 10, Rosewood Court, 18 Park Avenue, Leeds, LS8 2BL
2005-02-25 £196,950

Flat 11, Rosewood Court, 18 Park Avenue, Leeds, LS8 2BL
2017-09-20 £81,000
2004-10-29 £146,835

Flat 12, Rosewood Court, 18 Park Avenue, Leeds, LS8 2BL
2018-02-15 £90,000
2004-06-25 £150,450

Flat 14, Rosewood Court, 18 Park Avenue, Leeds, LS8 2BL
2006-07-25 £129,950

Flat 15, Rosewood Court, 18 Park Avenue, Leeds, LS8 2BL
2017-05-31 £100,000
2007-01-05 £175,000
2005-05-20 £174,950

Flat 16, Rosewood Court, 18 Park Avenue, Leeds, LS8 2BL
2005-08-26 £153,450

Flat 18, Rosewood Court, 18 Park Avenue, Leeds, LS8 2BL
2006-05-26 £126,950

Flat 19, Rosewood Court, 18 Park Avenue, Leeds, LS8 2BL
2012-05-23 £98,500
2006-04-21 £147,950

Flat 2, Rosewood Court, 18 Park Avenue, Leeds, LS8 2BL
2016-03-04 £99,950
2010-11-15 £115,000
2004-05-27 £152,450

Flat 20, Rosewood Court, 18 Park Avenue, Leeds, LS8 2BL
2004-11-10 £177,450

Flat 21, Rosewood Court, 18 Park Avenue, Leeds, LS8 2BL
2017-05-03 £124,950
2012-08-08 £125,000
2004-02-26 £206,450

Flat 22, Rosewood Court, 18 Park Avenue, Leeds, LS8 2BL
2005-07-13 £174,450

Flat 23, Rosewood Court, 18 Park Avenue, Leeds, LS8 2BL
2017-06-29 £77,000
2006-02-28 £148,950

Flat 24, Rosewood Court, 18 Park Avenue, Leeds, LS8 2BL
2005-08-23 £158,450

Flat 25, Rosewood Court, 18 Park Avenue, Leeds, LS8 2BL
2009-01-09 £140,000
2006-05-26 £144,950

Flat 26, Rosewood Court, 18 Park Avenue, Leeds, LS8 2BL
2004-10-27 £174,450

Flat 27, Rosewood Court, 18 Park Avenue, Leeds, LS8 2BL
2005-05-06 £210,450

Flat 28, Rosewood Court, 18 Park Avenue, Leeds, LS8 2BL
2016-09-08 £135,000
2014-07-03 £97,000
2004-04-16 £166,450

Flat 29, Rosewood Court, 18 Park Avenue, Leeds, LS8 2BL
2006-08-25 £139,200

Flat 3, Rosewood Court, 18 Park Avenue, Leeds, LS8 2BL
2016-12-15 £131,000
2014-01-31 £122,500
2005-06-24 £188,450

Flat 30, Rosewood Court, 18 Park Avenue, Leeds, LS8 2BL
2014-09-16 £108,500
2005-01-26 £162,950

Flat 31, Rosewood Court, 18 Park Avenue, Leeds, LS8 2BL
2009-08-26 £133,000
2006-05-26 £142,950

Flat 32, Rosewood Court, 18 Park Avenue, Leeds, LS8 2BL
2009-12-14 £165,000

Flat 33, Rosewood Court, 18 Park Avenue, Leeds, LS8 2BL
2004-07-22 £198,950

Flat 34, Rosewood Court, 18 Park Avenue, Leeds, LS8 2BL
2014-07-25 £115,000
2004-07-23 £162,950

Flat 4, Rosewood Court, 18 Park Avenue, Leeds, LS8 2BL
2004-07-23 £137,450

Flat 5, Rosewood Court, 18 Park Avenue, Leeds, LS8 2BL
2008-02-29 £152,000

Flat 6, Rosewood Court, 18 Park Avenue, Leeds, LS8 2BL
2005-08-26 £151,450

Flat 7, Rosewood Court, 18 Park Avenue, Leeds, LS8 2BL
2004-02-27 £178,450

Flat 8, Rosewood Court, 18 Park Avenue, Leeds, LS8 2BL
2005-04-26 £133,060

Comments

  1. Mr KJ Playforth
    McCarthy & Stone Flats

    McCarthy & Stone (M&S) were known to provide financial Incentives but not for the Early Bird, as stated.

    The incentives were for the Late Bird after the first buying frenzy subsided. This could have been once 50% of the 125 year leases had been purchased – so how does this effect the resale prices?

    I believe the initial cost to purchase flats near to where I lived were 20% to 40% overvalued.

    The Leasehold purchaser were not only purchasing 125 year lease, but was overpaying because it included the following:-

    COMMUNAL
    *Car Park
    *Kitchen
    *Lounge
    *Laundry
    *Lift

    A flat purchased in 2005/06 for £135k a so called Early Bird was in fact 12 months after the first leaseholder moved in. A £2k reduction in the price meant original cost was £137k.

    In 2015/16 – 3 similar flats were on sale in the same development for £75k each, until it was mentioned on a website, and within 2 weeks these 3 flats were seen on sale for £109K each.

    Strange that 3 flats for sale at £75k had overnight jumped 20%. I had spoken to the Estate Agent the week previously.

    It had been suggested the Freeholder/Landlord had insisted the price rises, from £75k to £119k. The development would have been devalued by as much as 40%. This means the value of the development had dropped so much it was no longer collateral as it had recently been re-mortgaged and revalued for Insurance at a much higher value?

    Now 7 months later some of the 1 bed flats have again dropped in value and the 113 years left on the lease can be purchased from as little as £85k

  2. Michael Hollands says:

    IT would be interesting to see the M&S reply to this letter.
    This subject has been brought to their attention many times but they have always come up with an excuse or reason.
    I cannot understand how they can be struggling financially, when they sell new well above the current real value and in addition charge around £500 pa ground rent.

  3. If the kitchen and lounge is included as part of the “communal area” in a retirement building , and the demised flat only includes the private areas for hallway, bedroom(s) and bathroom area , the business model must be wrong to compete for subsequent sale as a used flat without its own lounge and kitchen or burdened with high service charge.

    The first time buyer for new property in a retirement home is probably downsizing from sale of larger family home and well cashed up , just retired and looking to buy a new home in what may be his last hurrah .

    However when the flat is offered for sale as a used one, the prospective buyer is less affluent and not able to afford a brand new flat but this buyer can choose to buy a flat from the entire market.

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