Voluntary Agreement With CMA
23 June 2021
("Persimmon" or "the Group")
Agreement Of Voluntary Undertakings With The CMA And Closure Of Leasehold Investigation
Following constructive discussions with the Competition and Markets Authority ("CMA") Persimmon announces that it has agreed a number of voluntary informal undertakings relating to its historic sale of leasehold houses. This agreement brings to an end Persimmon's involvement in the on-going CMA leasehold investigation.
Persimmon stopped selling leasehold houses in 2017 (other than in exceptional cases) and also introduced an industry-leading Right to Buy scheme enabling customers with leasehold houses to buy their freehold at a price below market value. The informal voluntary undertakings agreed today largely extend existing schemes Persimmon has in place and have been made without any admission of wrongdoing or liability. Working with the CMA to provide further certainty and reassurance to leasehold customers, Persimmon has voluntarily agreed to the following:
An extension of its existing Right to Buy scheme to cap the purchase price of a freehold at £2,000. This extended scheme will apply to any house leases sold on or after 1 January 2000 and runs until 31 December 2026;
Customers who have already acquired their freeholds from Persimmon under the existing Right to Buy scheme, and who still own the freehold, can apply to be reimbursed for the difference between the price paid and £2,000;
An extension of its Reservation Period for home buyers from 35 days to 42 days.
Dean Finch, Group Chief Executive said: "Persimmon has not historically sold leasehold houses in high volumes and introduced a Right to Buy scheme for leaseholders in 2017. However, we are committed to putting our customers first and have voluntarily agreed to extend this existing support to provide further certainty and reassurance.
"Building on our existing Right to Buy scheme, this agreement provides a fair deal for all leaseholders of Persimmon built houses, extending the opportunity to purchase their freehold at a price well below market value. Today's agreement further demonstrates Persimmon's determination to operate with integrity as we continue to build a business with a long-term, responsible and sustainable future."
Persimmon has established a dedicated national Freephone helpline number (0800 915 6722) which leaseholders can call for more information. Alternatively, further information can be found at: www.persimmonhomes.com/leasehold.
For further information, please contact:
Anthony Vigor, Group Director of Policy and External Affairs
Tel: +44 (0)7767 425822
Citigate Dewe Rogerson
Kevin Smith / Jos Bieneman
Tel: +44 (0)20 7638 9571
Notes to editors
Persimmon has previously announced a number of measures in respect of leasehold homes:
The Group stopped selling leasehold houses in 2017, except in very limited circumstances where our development's land is itself leasehold, typically a handful of completions a year.
In 2017 the Group introduced its Right to Buy scheme to enable leaseholders of Persimmon houses to acquire their leases at a price below market value.
Since March 2019 the Group has been a signatory to the Leasehold Pledge, a government-backed pledge which commits freeholders, developers, conveyancers and managing agents to taking concrete steps to help leaseholders who are stuck in unfair deals.
Today's announcement brings to a close the CMA's enforcement action on Persimmon, announced alongside three other volume housebuilders, on 4 September 2020.