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F E Smith
F E Smith, Advocate
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10398
Experience:  I have been practising for 30 years.
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I am one of two leaseholders in the property that I live in.

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I am one of two leaseholders in the property that I live in. The other leaseholder wants the roof to be renewed together with other works. This job is not cheap and the estimate from his roofers are around £13,000.00. I then suggest that I will send in other roofers of my choice to ascertain why and what needs to be done before I could commit myself to such an expenditure. When my roofers got in touch with him he refused to give permission for them to enter, let alone do the assessment for a quote. I then wrote back to him, via email, stating that I could not possibly get involve if I do not have the means to verify the necessary works if he is not willing to give access to his flat. I do not even know if the roof needs to be replaced at all!
I bought this flat last year in Sept and I was approached in June this year. He has been
living in this property for the last 20 years. He has since replied that he will proceed with the works with the landlords aproval and that I could chip in if I wish.
I fear I am dealing with a very devious person. Please advise me on how to deal with this man as I do not wish to have any future suprises such as I would have to pay half of the bill. Thanks

I'm sorry, I didn't mean to respond to this.

I will opt out for others.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I was expecting a prompt reply as this matter is rather urgent to me. Thanks.
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Thank you!
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I hope to get the ahswer asap.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hello Justanswer
I am still waiting for your answer, Will I get a reply asap. You can also contact me on***********
We will continue to look for a Professional to assist you.
Thank you for your patience,

Are you or the other leaseholder or both of you responsible for the exterior and roof of the building or is the landlord and if so, is that paid for through the service charge?

Why is the leaseholder doing the repair to the roof rather than the landlord?

Has the landlord served a section 20 notice with regard to the extent and total cost of the works to be undertaken

Is your concern that the person will go ahead with the repairs saying that you can chip in if you like and then they will simply come to you for a large chunk of money?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I do not understand why we as leaseholders are responsible for the repairs to the roof. But we do not pay any service charges at all. Yes, I am very concerned that the other person is going ahead with the works and then later on force me, by some legal escamotage, to pay half of the costs. In order to more clearly define the boundaries of the lease holders responsibilities I will try and attach copy of the previous lease for your perusal, should you deem it necessary. I hope that will help with the enquiry.

It depends what the lease says as to whether you or both of you are responsible for the roof and the structure.

Sometimes you are jointly responsible for it all, sometimes part of it, sometimes the person in the upper flat is responsible for the roof, sometimes all the flats are responsible. Sometimes it’s the landlord’s responsibility and he may or may not be able to charge for that through service charge.

A copy of the lease would be really useful because at the moment, I am just speculating.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I did try to attach the lease earler but I was not able to send it to you as it says the file was too big. Could you provide me with another email address so that I could send it to you asap? Thanks.

Please put my name on it, and UK law, and send it to *****@******.*** and it will be forwarded to me

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I would like to inform you that this property belongs to my son, and I am enquiring on his behalf. I will now foraward all the documents : Lease, Terms of the Lease and the Insurance policy.

No problem. Noted

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Have you received those sent documents via email from***@******.***? Thanks for your patience.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Just realised that I have missed the most important part of the lease with regards ***** ***** roof and I have just sent it.

Not yet. They can take up to 24 hours to arrive because they are forwarded manually.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
oh my god. I shall forward to you the last document sent as I think it is the most important one. I did not even know of its existence until earlier today!!.

They are just heads of terms. It’s not a legal document, it was just what was agreed and which the lease was based upon. It is likely that the lease will mirror that we cannot be sure until we see the lease.

You will see that the extent of the property includes the roof. Presumably the other tenant has the same provision.

At the bottom of the first page, there is a liability to keep the premises in good repair.

Then, on page 2 there is the liability to pay 50% of all the various costs including the roof.

However it would be unusual for the tenants to be responsible for actually doing the work rather than paying for it. I do still need to see the lease because at the end of the day, the lease is the binding document.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
This is exactly how I feel. Why should he undertake the task of replacing the roof unless there is a particular reason that I am not aware of. Kindly update me when you received the lease. Thanks for your prompt action.

Will do. It isnt here yet.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hello Mr. Smith
I hope the documents have arrived.

I have the documentation now thank you. The initial report on title is a little thin on advice.

The initial report on title says in clause 5,that the lease is enclosed and referred to the report on lease. However, I don’t have that report. It may be that what was reported to you was defective but I’m unable to say at this stage.

I have looked at the lease itself To see what your liabilities are and these are in the 4 schedule which is in page 16.

Under clause 1a you are responsible along with the other leaseholder for the cost of repairing the main structure and the roofwhich is described in the 4 schedule. The obligation to pay 50% arises under clause 3c.

Under clause 5e, it says that this is the lessors responsibility to carry out the work in the 4 schedule.

Hence, this is not a job for the other leaseholder. You and the other leaseholder are responsible for 50% of the cost of repairing the roof but that work must be done by the landlord.

If the landlord is going to do work which will cost more than £250 per tenant, he must serve a section 20 notice otherwise he cannot recover that money.

Can I clarify anything for you?

Please rate the service positive. It’s an important part of the process by which experts get paid.

I can still clarify things for you.

Best wishes.


Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you so much for the good news. As I suspected, the other leaseholder was dodgy. Why did he refused entry and access to my roofers. I did not have a copy of the lease until my son sent it to me yesterday and I forwarded it to you immediately. Wow!! What a relief. Now, can I write back to the other leaseholder to inform him that I have been in touch with a solicitor to understand my legal position and that I do not need to pay for the works that he has propose, and shall I cc this letter to the landlord as well?

You don’t need to pay for the work which is proposed by the leaseholder because he has no right to do it.

If the work is needed, it has to be done by the freeholder and then, you are responsible for 50% but he cannot enforce that unless he gives a section 20 notice first.

I would certainly make sure that the landlord knows what the leaseholder is up to because the landlord is likely to want to have control over what happens to his building

F E Smith, Advocate
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10398
Experience: I have been practising for 30 years.
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