Gavin Barwell

  • Features
    Features

    Ultimate Estate Agents’ Guide: Housing ministers

    The Negotiator runs a critical eye over the ever revolving door of politicians who have taken on the housing brief, most of whom have not lasted long.

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  • Latest property news
    Latest property news

    New Housing Minister is Alok Sharma, MP Reading West

    The new Minister for Housing and Planning is Alok Sharma, MP, Reading West. Mr Sharma retained his seat with a majority of 2876 in last week’s election. First elected in 2010 for Reading West, with one of the largest swings to the Conservatives in the country, Alok has served as a member of the Commons Treasury select committee, a member of the Commons Science and Technology select committee, a Parliamentary Private Secretary at the Treasury and from 2012-15 as a Conservative Party Vice Chairman. Alok was appointed in 2016 as the Prime Minister’s Infrastructure Envoy India.  He also serves as Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster who has overall responsibility for the Cabinet Office. Alok is also Co-Chairman of Conservative Friends of India. Prior to entering Parliament, Alok qualified as a chartered accountant with Coopers & Lybrand Deloitte, and then worked for 16 years within investment banking, first with the Japanese firm Nikko Securities and then SE Banken, where he held senior roles based out of London, Stockholm and Frankfurt, including serving as a member of the bank’s Corporate Finance Global Management Committee.

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  • Latest property news
    Latest property news

    Hung parliament: the property industry’s first responses

    There are many people who won’t be thanking Theresa May for yesterday’s election and today’s hung parliament including her Housing Minister Gavin Barwell who lost his seat last night in Croydon Central. But it’s clear from the property industry’s reaction to the hung parliament result that the political uncertainty that Theresa May has managed to pluck from the jaws of stability following the EU Referendum, is not welcome. The housing market hates uncertainty – people buying and selling their most prized and valuable asset don’t like moving when an election is looming, and particularly when it’s the third national vote in two years. RICS released research yesterday revealing the damage that the election had already done to the property market. It said that a drop in the number of properties coming on the market during May had been “exacerbated by the General Election, as some adopt a ‘wait and see’ approach”. “In May, 25% more respondents cited a decline in fresh listings (compared to those reporting a rise), producing the most negative reading since July 2016,” the RICS report said. Nick Leeming, Chairman, Jackson-Stops & Staff “The UK was promised a period of stability but today’s announcement provides anything but at…

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  • Latest property newsGavin Barwell bbc
    Latest property news

    Gavin Barwell loses his seat in Croydon Central

    Housing Minister Gavin Barwell has lost his Croydon Central seat to Labour in an astonishing turnaround in fortunes for the 45-year-old, who has only been Minister for Housing, Planning and Minister for London at the Department of Communities and Local Government for a year. Barwell, like his predecessor Brandon Lewis, was a Minister of State and not, as in previous years, a more junior Under-Secretary of State, reflecting increasing consternation within the government about the state of the housing market. Appointed in July last year, Gavin Barwell was elected as Conservative MP for Croydon Central in May 2010 and only weeks ago the Queen approved his addition to her Privy Council. Given the other upheavals and the looming hung parliament and Theresa’s potential exit as leader, the loss of Croydon Central is not a huge surprise. It was one of the UK’s most marginal seats which Gavin Barwell won by just 165 seats in 2010. Last night he lost it to Labour and both Jeremy Corbyn and Theresa paid visits to his former constituency during the campaign. But such a heavyweight visit by a Prime Minster couldn’t help Barwell, who lost by 5,652 votes to Labour’s Sarah Jones. She now…

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  • Latest property newslawyer
    Latest property news

    Minister comes down hard on rogue letting agents and landlords with £30k fines

    The government has published details of a tough new system of civil penalties to tackle rogue letting agents and landlords. From today onwards these enable local housing authorities to issues fines to both landlords and their agents of up to £30,000 for a range of housing offences. The measures are part of the promises made in last month’s Housing White Paper to “create a bigger and better private rental sector”. “These measures will give councils the additional powers they need to tackle poor-quality rental homes in their area,” says Housing Minister Garvin Barwell (pictured, left). “By driving out of business those rogue landlords that continue to flout the rules, we can raise standards, improve affordability and give tenants the protections they need.” Offences covered include: Failure to comply with an Improvement Notice; HMO offences Failure to licence houses in areas where such schemes are operating Failure to comply with management regulation for HMOs. These new powers, which were introduced by section 126 and Schedule 9 of the Housing and Planning Act 2016, are designed to offer an alternative to councils to the costly and often lengthy process of prosecuting rogue landlords and agents. The penalties will be applied through a…

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  • Latest property newsGavin Barwell, Housing Minister, image
    Latest property news

    Minister’s controversial ideas to beat housing crisis

    Gavin Barwell, the Housing Minister has been airing some interesting views about the UK’s housing crisis and how it can be resolved.

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  • Latest property newslandlord
    Latest property news

    NLA takes Housing Minister to task over buy-to-let tax “tosh”

    Changes due to be made to the UK’s buy-to-let tax rules will push over 400,000 basic-rate landlords into a higher tax bracket, says the National Landlords Association (NLA). This is more than the ‘small’ number the government said would be affected by the changes, which severely reduce the mortgage interest payments and other finance related costs landlords have been able, until recently, to deduct from their business costs before declaring their taxable income. NLA chief executive Richard Lambert has described the government’s claims that the changes will have a low impact as “complete tosh” and has met with Housing Minister Gavin Barwell to discuss the problem. Lambert urged the minister to consider amending the rules to reduce the impact on landlords and that this could be “easily achieved by applying the rules to only new loans written after April 2017”. “Unless this happens, landlords will face an impossible decision of whether to increase rents and cause misery for their tenants, or to sell-up, and force their tenants to find a new home,” he says. Landlords operating on only small profit margins are likely to be the ones most worried by the tax changes, which the NLA estimates will increase the…

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  • Features
    Features

    Brexit

    A catchy new word that many thought would be trending today, forgotten tomorrow. My goodness, how wrong we were.

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