HS2 – How Will It Affect You?

6th March 2013

The proposed route for Phase Two of HS2, running from Birmingham to Manchester and Leeds has been announced, and left many home and land owners wondering how it will affect them, how the various levels of compulsory purchase work and what compensation they are likely to be able to claim.

The proposed route is not definite but in reality is unlikely to change. As things stand, a HS2 bill will grant powers to acquire land and property, depending on the distance it is from the track. There are various levels of compensation and compulsory purchase proposed depending on the property affected.

Sale and Rent Back

Owners of property, which will be demolished for HS2, can sell their homes to the Government but remain in occupation as a tenant until works begin. This does not apply to business premises, landlords and second homes owners.

Property 0-60m from track (Advanced Purchase Scheme)

Property here can be compulsorily purchased or receive compensation. Blight notices can be served when the scheme is officially adopted, depending on the property type and extent. However, each case will be considered individually where a property overlaps two zones.

Property 60-120m from track (Voluntary Purchase Scheme)

The Government plans to make it possible for property owners in this zone in rural areas to request that their property be purchased at its unblighted value. The value will be determined by two separate valuations paid for by HS2. Again each case under the VPZ will be considered individually where a property overlaps two zones.

Property 120m from track

Affected residential owner-occupiers who have been unable to sell their property for the open market value can apply to a Long Term Hardship Scheme dependant on various criteria.

Properties over tunnels

The government state that they are committed to assisting property owners who will be affected by tunnelling under their property for HS2.

Exceptional Hardship Scheme

This scheme is still up for debate and is open to public input. But essentially the scheme could provide compensation for eligible residential and small business owner-occupiers whose property value may be affected by HS2, or who can demonstrate that they have an urgent need to sell.

If you think will be affected and can claim compensation, the next thing you will probably want to know is, when?

HS2 advisors plan to meet property owners when the route has been confirmed and carry out an Impact Assessment. It is important to ensure you take professional advice ahead of this meeting, as this will affect your claim.

The consultation on the proposed route will be launched later in 2013, with a decision made on accepting the preferred route towards the end of 2014. This time will be key for claims for statutory blight, and those eligible under the VPZ. Thereafter initial survey work is likely to be carried out in 2015.

Compensation payments and the procedure for acquiring land for HS2 will be different than other road and rail schemes in the past. It is therefore important to ensure professional advice is sought at an early stage, and will be key during an Impact Assessment meeting.

The team at George F White are experienced at handing all types of compensation claims, and are committed to keeping up to date with the latest developments with HS2 For further information on how George F White can assist you in relation to HS2, get in touch with one of the contacts below, or follow our website and find us on Twitter @GeorgeFWhite where we will be posting regular updates on the scheme.

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