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Joshua
Joshua, Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 26070
Experience:  LL.B (Hons), Higher Prof. Dip. Law & Practice
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I purchased a leasehold flat in September and the seller stated

Resolved Question:

I purchased a leasehold flat in September and the seller stated in replies to enquiries that there were no forthcoming large maintenance bills due. The Management Company also did not draw to my solicitors attention any large maintenance bills due.

I have now been presented a bill for almost £1,000 for driveway works at the flats. This proposal has apparently been ongoing for some time and was agreed in an AGM. I was not aware of this AGM or the driveway works. No correspondence or quotes etc has been provided to me. The Management Company now wish payment of this money by February.

Please help .... The seller has obviously given false information in his replies to enquiries.
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Joshua replied 4 years ago.

Joshua :

Hello and thank you for your question. I will be very pleased to assist you. I'm a practicing lawyer in England with over 10 years experience.

Joshua :

May I clarify whether the work has actually been carried out please?

Joshua :

Is this a share of freehold property or right to manage property please or is maintenance carried out by a third party landlord?

Customer:

The works are due to take place in February. I purchased the residue of the lease of 117 years. All tenants (x16) are due equally to contribute towards works re maintenance - a half yearly maintenance/ground rent is paid in the sum of £395 which covers garden maintenance. lighting communal areas and cleaning stairwells.

Joshua :

Thanks. Are you aware whether major works notices have been served and a statutory consultation process has been followed by the landlord?

Customer:

I have not been made aware of anything by the management company, residents association or the seller with regard to these works - no papers/correspondence received at all

Joshua :

Do the tenants manage maintenance themselves either by way of a share in the freehold or right to manage or does a third party landlord manage the maintenance?

Customer:

Just a bill arrived

Customer:

The tenants have a residents association and discuss works and get a vote from all 16 flats to any proposed works and then correspondence with the management company apparently. The driveway works, I have been lead to believe, have been on the cards for a long time but I was not made aware of them by the seller or the residents Ass or the management co

Customer:

Is this not a case for misrepresentation by the seller ?

Joshua :

Many thanks. The starting point is that any service charge or one off charge that results in more than £250 being charged to each tenant requires the landlord to enter into a statutory consultation process and serve something called s20 notices and consult on the works proposed. If he fails to do so he cannot charge more than £250 to each tenant.

Joshua :

You may wish to esquire as to whether such notices were served or not. If not you are entitled to refuse to pay more than the above.

Customer:

Ok, does this mean that as I have not been informed of the works and the seller failed to admit to them that I am only liable for £250 ?

Joshua :

In addition if you have evidence that the seller misrepresented the position and failed to disclose major works you may have a claim against the seller for any undisclosed expenses you incur for breach of contract.

Joshua :

If you / or the seller were not formally consulted by s20 notice and follow up consultation on quotes etc then in any event you will not be liable for more than £250.

Customer:

Thank you very much indeed - this is the information I was looking for - I will take matters further.

Joshua :

A pleasure

Customer:

Is this information printable ?

Joshua :

If I can assist any further as the situation develops please do no hesitate to let me know.

Joshua :

If you have no further questions for now I should be very grateful if you would kindly take a moment to rate my service to you today. Your feedback is important to me. If there is anything else I can help with though please reply back to me though.

Joshua :

Sorry I note our last posts crossed. Yes I can ask customer services to email you a copy of the thread if you would like?

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