Jump to content

Leasehold Service Charges


Recommended Posts

This is an unsual matter, but one that I am sure somebody will have some

expert knowledge of................

I own a flat (lease hold) in a converted, 3 storey Victorian Town

House which I now rent out.

The house is in need of work to the exterior walls and the roof but

the free-hold owner refused to spend any of the accumulated service

charge money(around £3k) on maintenance to the building. The money was only

ever used for window cleaning.

The free-hold has now been sold by the previous owner and now, two

problems have arisen:

1) the original lease hold owner has taken almost all of the pot of

service charge funds and has claimed the money has been used for his

administration fees.

2) the new lease hold owner wants to increase the service charge but

seems equally unenthusiastic about spending money on the building and

wants to pay his friends to work on the garden (which is already well

looked after by the residents)

What is my legal position? Is the free hols owner legally obliged to

maintain the building itself? Can the free holder spend the service money

on non-specific 'admin fees' without input from the residents?

Whilst as a landlord myself I understand that he wishes to cover all his administration fees, but empting the pot of money and claiming it

was spent on window cleaning with his receipts is not fair whilst the

exterior & value of the building suffers.



Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi G-Force

Not quite my field, but I come across "crap" like this almost on a daily basis.

You may have heard of them already, but it may be worth checking them out, it is the Leasehold Advisory Service:


You should as a total group write with your intentions immediately and say that you disagree with the works and will not be paying until this matter is settled. I understand that by not paying Insurance or Ground rent you are in breach of your lease, but maintenance charges do not constitute a breach so that must be dealt with as a claim in the County Courts which could then be settled in an abritory way.

Good Luck

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you look at something enfranchisement, which you will come across a lot over the coming weeks when dealing with freehold disputes and acquisitions, you will simply need a mojority of 75% of the leaseholders to agree to take action. But even without enfranchisement a joint effort of the same proportions to tell him or her the way things should be and clip their wings a bit won't do any harm at all.

Tell me, were you all offered the Freehold prior to it being sold on to this new Freeholder?. This is quite important.



Link to comment
Share on other sites

This is another intersting point as I am not sure what qualifies as 'being asked'

We received a letter from the previous landlord that stated he was planning to sell at auction. He then said that if we wanted the buy the lease, the price was£X. I don't rememebr the price for the moment but it was ridiculously high and way above what it was worth and what was originally paid for it.

We jointly wrote a letter saying we wanted to buy the lease and offering a more realsitc price-assuming there might then be some negociation.

We never received a reply, despite leaving phone messages etc nothing was heard until we then had another letter with an auction date on it.

I was never happy that this really qualified as being offered the opportunity to buy the lease or not. Any thoughts?

Link to comment
Share on other sites


This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

  • Create New...