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Joshua
Joshua, Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 25358
Experience:  LL.B (Hons), Higher Prof. Dip. Law & Practice
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My brother and I own a flat in Hastings. This flat was our

Resolved Question:

My brother and I own a flat in Hastings. This flat was our mothers until she died.At that time the management of maintenance was managed by the flat owners,16 flats.
around 6 years ago a maintenance co.was appointed. The management fee is £350 per annum
The building has concrete window surrounds which have in some of them cracked and crumbled.
The management co. have now demanded €10000 from each flat owner to pay for repairs.
Since this damage has been evident for many years long before the manegment co.took over
we feel this repair should of been assessed when the company was appointed and the annual
maintenance fee adjusted to suit a repair progamme.
We would be greatfull for your comments.

Ray and Phil Ward
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Nicola-mod replied 3 years ago.

Hello,

I've been working hard to find a Professional to assist you with your question, but sometimes finding the right Professional can take a little longer than expected.

I wonder whether you're ok with continuing to wait for an answer. If you are, please let me know and I will continue my search. If not, feel free to let me know and I will cancel this question for you.

Thank you!
Nicola
Expert:  Nicola-mod replied 3 years ago.
Hello,

I apologise as we have not yet been able to find a Professional to assist you. Do you wish for me to continue to search for someone to assist you or would you like for us to close your question at this time?

Thank you for your patience,
Nicola
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Yes we do not mind waiting.


 


Ray

Expert:  Nicola-mod replied 3 years ago.
Hello Ray,

We will continue to look for a Professional to assist you.

Thank you for your patience,
Nicola
Expert:  Joshua replied 3 years ago.
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.

  1. I would be please to assist you with this. May I confirm this relates to England and Wales please - it is just I note there is reference to Euros in your post.
  2. You mention a management company has been appointed. Is this managing agents acting on behalf of the residents management or freehold company?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Sorry the amount should be £10000.


The flat is in Hastings England.


The management company are working on behalf of the flat owners.


 


Regards


 


Ray Ward

Expert:  Joshua replied 3 years ago.
  1. Many thanks for the above. Is this a managing agency firm that has been appointed by the residents to assist them with management of the building from what you say?
  2. Do you know if the issue has been discussed between the residents previously both in terms of prior maintenance requirements not being attended to and the present demand?
  3. Have you received a s20 major works consultation notice regarding the proposed works?
  4. The amount you refer to seems very expensive. Do you believe the works will be this costly potentially?
  5. Has the management agent been appointed on a full service maintenance agreement to your knowledge?
  6. Finally do you consider that failure to attend to repairs has meant potentially avoidable expensive costs have been incurred which potentially could have been avoided or delayed had maintenance been observed?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thanks for your reply I will consult with my brother regarding info you require and get back to you.


 


Ray

Expert:  Joshua replied 3 years ago.
I look forward to hearing fro you.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Dear XXXXX,


 


After consulting my brother the answers to your questions as follows.


 


1 16 flats majority vote taken.


 


2 We are not sure.


 


3 No we have not recieved a s20


 


4 No



5 No




6 Yes



Hope these answers are of some help.




Regards



Ray Ward


































KkkkkoooGHJ5


 

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi Joshua,


 


Did you recieve information?


 


Ray Ward

Expert:  Joshua replied 3 years ago.
Thank you . I apologise for the delay in reverting to you. The only point I am not clear on from the above is whether the management company you refer to is an agency retained by the freehold company (of which I understand the residents are members/shareholder). Is it the case that the management company you refer to is a management agency retained by the freehold company as opposed to a management company appointed under the lease?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thank you for your reply. The freehold is owned by the flat owners




the Courtlands Residents Association which appointed the management company.



Hope this is of some help.



Ray Ward



Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi Joshua,


Did you get my answer to your question about the freehold?


 


Ray Ward

Expert:  Joshua replied 3 years ago.
Sory for the delay in reverting to you.

On the basis that the company is a managing agent appointed by theentity responsible for maintenance - from what you say this is the residents association which members in turn have shares or are members of the freehold company that owns the freehold, then the residents who are members of the freehold company may consider raising maintenance failures with the agents as a matter of quality of service under their contract with the freehold company. Any of the directors may consider doing this in the first instance. If not satisfied the frehold company may consider giving notice to the agents to terminate their agreement and from their appoint another agent or manage the maintenance by the residents if there are vounteers that are prepared to undertake this role.

In addition or alternatively there are steps each individual resident can take individually notiwithstanding the right to take action as above collectively through the freehold company.

It is unlawful for a landlord to seek to recover service charges for work that was paid for more than 18 months prior to the invoice being issued for the same. The landlord or agent must issue the demand within 18 months of his incurring the cost. If the demand is provided later than this, the landlord cannot recover the costs at all, unless a notice is served during the 18 months stating that costs have been incurred and that the tenant will be required to contribute to them by payment of a service charge.


In addition for any charge that will incur cost of more than £250 per tenant a s20 consultation notice and procedure must be followed by the landlord/agent otherwise they are limited to £250 / tenant in terms of the maximum cost they can recover. Finally any invoice must have the landlords full name and address and a summary of rights an obligations on the reverse or it is invalid and can be ignored until replaced with a correct invoice.

You can also demand the agent provides a summary of service charges paid under the lease to date by serving a s21 notice on the landlady. You then have the right to demand further information backing up the summary you receive by serving a s22 notice. If the agent does not provide the information requested then the landlord can can be liable for prosecution and a fine of up to £2500 though as the freehold is owned by the residents this is not very useful as a deterent here. The local authority can assist in prosecution if necessary however which the agents could be held accountable for financially if they are found to be negligent in dealing with tyour request by the freehold company. Either before or after obtaining such information as you reasonably require you can challenge both the reasonbleness in the circumstances of the service charges already demanded for repairs and the current service charges now demanded for the same by applying to the Leasehold Tribunal using this form:

http://hmctsformfinder.justice.gov.uk/courtfinder/forms/leasehold-003-eng.doc

You can use this form to prevent the landlord/agent charging costs in relation to the application to the service charge account:

http://hmctsformfinder.justice.gov.uk/courtfinder/forms/leasehold-07-eng.doc

 

Is there anything above I can clarify for you?

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi Joshua,


 


Thank you for your reply.




To clarify if we think the agent is raising an unreasonable amount of



money from the flat owners we can use the form you mention.


 


Ray Ward.

Expert:  Joshua replied 3 years ago.
Quite so as individual leaseholders you can use the above form to take action personally.

Alternatively or in addition you can urge other residents to take action against the agents through their ownership of the freehold.

Is there anything else I can help you with?
Joshua, Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 25358
Experience: LL.B (Hons), Higher Prof. Dip. Law & Practice
Joshua and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thank you Joshua for your help we will use the forms you mention.


If we need futher assistance I will contact you.


 


Ray Ward

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