How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Aston Lawyer Your Own Question
Aston Lawyer
Aston Lawyer, Solicitor
Category: Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 10585
Experience:  LLB(HONS) 23 years of experience in dealing with Conveyancing and Property Law
16368554
Type Your Property Law Question Here...
Aston Lawyer is online now

Hello, I own a flat and also have a share of the Freehold

Customer Question

Hello,
I own a flat and also have a share of the Freehold which is split equally amongst the 6 flats in the building of which we are all directors. The owners of one flat split up 3 years ago and they have an arrangement where one is the leaseholder who stays in the flat and pays the mortgage and the other is a director of the freehold, who does not live in the property, would contribute the required percentage for the up keep of the property.
The problem we have is that the flat in question is in arrears. He is required to provide for any maintenance to the property but despite assurances that he will contribute on a monthly basis, he continuously fails to do so. Each year is a struggle to get payment for the building insurance and any other repairs which are needed. We have been very accommodating but it has got to a stage where I want to know what our legal options are. The lease does not state regular payments must be made, however everyone provides funds as and when needed. My understanding is as directors we have a responsibility to maintain the building however, this is being hindered by his actions. He will eventually pay his share of the insurance otherwise the mortgage will be void (my understanding), but in the mean time we or should I say I will be covering his share as I pay frequently into the maintenance fund. His delay also prevents essential works being done. We were in a situation recently where the insurance refused to cover some repairs as nothing had been done for years, despite being told to do so. Although it was not his fault, I do not want to get into that situation again.
What are the options we have to pay on time? I have told him I will look at the legal options and am prepared to go to a solicitor, but he seems think that we probably can't do anything as he is the legal owner of the flat. I think as a director he is culpable to some form of action.
Please advise.
Regards
David Nettey
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Property Law
Expert:  Aston Lawyer replied 2 years ago.

Hello and thanks for using Just Answer.

I am Al and am happy to assist you with your enquiry.

Well, by far the quikest, cheapest and most effective thing to do is to write to the Mortgage Company, confirming that there are these arrears. A Mortgage Lender will always pay any arrears directly, as they can then re-coup it from the borrower under the Mortgage conditions.

I am not sure if the property is still in the joint names of both parties, but if it is in the sole name of the lady, then she, as Leaseholder, is responsible for the payments as opposed to the man, who is the Director.

A Notice confirming who the Mortgage is with, should have been served on the Freehold Company by the parties Solicitor when they purchased the property, so you should have their details. If not, you can go on the Land Registry website and obtain a copy of their Deeds for a nominal fee, (called "Official Copies") and the Charges Register will confirm the name and address of the Mortgage Company.

A short letter to the Mortgage Company is all it will take for the payment to be made, and hopefully will mean that you won't have this continual problem in the future.

I hope this helps you and answers your question.

Kind Regards

AL

Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Thanks Al.
I think the mortgage is in joint names, however the lady's argument will be that she has no involvement as that the agreement with with her ex was drawn up by a solicitor and that her only responsibility is to pay off the mortgage and not the maintenance fees on the property. I presume she cannot argue this?
Regards
David
Expert:  Aston Lawyer replied 2 years ago.

Hi David,

Thanks for your reply.

She can argue all she likes that her ex is responsible, but as her name is ***** ***** Mortgage, then in the eyes of the Mortgage Company, she is legally responsible full stop.

From her point of view, she is primarily liable, and up to her to pursue her ex for any monies she has to pay out, if he has come to a separate agreement with her to pay the insurance.

I hope this assists.

Kind Regards

AL

Aston Lawyer and other Property Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Thanks very much
Expert:  Aston Lawyer replied 2 years ago.

Thanks David.

If you are happy with my answer, I would be grateful if you could leave positive feedback.

Best Wishes

AL

Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Just one more thing, will the mortgage company only pay the arrears regarding the building insurance as the arrears also relate to repairs no maintenance of the property?
Thanks
Expert:  Aston Lawyer replied 2 years ago.

Hi David,

The Mortgage Company will pay any sums that the Tenant is responsible under the terms of the Lease. Therefore, any service charge that is due will also be paid by the Mortgage Company.

Kind Regards

AL