Do I need consent to let from the Freeholder?

Do I need consent to let from the Freeholder?

10:15 AM, 15th August 2022, About 2 months ago 8

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Hello, Do I need consent to let from the Freeholder when I am planning to get a potential tenant on an AST?

According to the Section X of the lease document: “To sublet the whole or any part of the Premises save that an underletting of the whole of the Premises with the prior written consent of the Landlord (such consent not to be unreasonably withheld or delayed) is permitted in the case of an assured shorthold tenancy agreement or such other instrument whereby security of tenure by the under-tenant is not created.”

According to the contract, there is a charge for subletting: “Where your Lease requires your landlord to grant consent or provide formal receipt of a notice (or both) there may be charges payable. Your Lease may state the charges payable, however, typical charges are £55 plus VAT per tenancy agreement for the provision of a consent and £85 plus VAT for the receipt of a notice.”

Can someone please advise me if I need consent to let from the Freeholder?

Also are their fees reasonable ?

Thank you.

Micky



Comments

David Smith

17:29 PM, 15th August 2022, About 2 months ago

My Flat leases state the same clauses as yours but without the fees. I have never sought permission from the Freeholder and never had an issue in fact the managing agent has said on one of the property’s that they do not seek permission.

Micky

19:07 PM, 15th August 2022, About 2 months ago

Reply to the comment left by David Smith at 15/08/2022 - 17:29Correction It should say the following on the 2nd paragraph -
According to the Freeholders's webite within their FAQ section (not in my contract), there is a charge for subletting: “Where your Lease requires your landlord to grant consent or provide formal receipt of a notice (or both) there may be charges payable. Your Lease may state the charges payable, however, typical charges are £55 plus VAT per tenancy agreement for the provision of a consent and £85 plus VAT for the receipt of a notice.”
Therefore in my lease there is no clause about charge. but it's there on Freeholder's FAQ section of their website - https://eandjestates.co.uk/faqs/

David Smith

8:55 AM, 16th August 2022, About 2 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Micky at 15/08/2022 - 19:07
I would say that your lease is superior to any subsequent information about fee’s on their website. The fact your lease doesn’t have a provision for charges in this scenario then none are enforceable in my opinion.

David

13:36 PM, 16th August 2022, About 2 months ago

Yes, you need consent to let from your freeholder.

David Smith

13:58 PM, 16th August 2022, About 2 months ago

Reply to the comment left by David at 16/08/2022 - 13:36
Yes probably need consent from the Freeholder but If fee's are not outlined in the lease then I can not see how they enforce a fee.

Micky

8:24 AM, 19th August 2022, About a month ago

Here is the First response from the Freeholder

We write following your request to Sublet, we have carried out a review of the Lease in respect of the above leasehold property.

Having reviewed the terms of your lease, it has been noted that the landlord’s consent is required if the property is being Sublet.

If you wish to Sublet the property you are required to obtain the necessary consent as detailed on the enclosed information sheet. Please read this information carefully.

Also enclosed is our Application form for completion and return along with your payment of £150.00 (£125.00 plus VAT) made payable to XXX, so that the Licence to Sublet can be prepared.

Micky

8:30 AM, 19th August 2022, About a month ago

Here is the Second response from the Freeholder, after questioning where in the lease it allows them to charge me.

Freeholder's second reponse:"Please be advised in the circumstances the contract (the Lease) is silent, the law specifies that the landlords costs are payable for any consents given. The landlord cannot charge a fine but he can charge a reasonable sum in respect of the expense incurred in granting the consent under Section 144 Law of Property Act 1925 - “This Act does not preclude the right to require the payment of a reasonable sum in respect of any legal or other expense incurred in relation to such consent”.

According to grant the consent a fee is applicable of £50 plus VAT in addition a Notice fee is applied of £75 plus VAT this is as set out within clause 30."

Clause 30 from lease states "Within 1 calendar month after the date of any and every assignment transfer mortgage charge underlease or tenancy agreement (including any immediate or derivative underlease or tenancy agreement) of the whole of the Premises for any term assignment of such underlease or grant of probate or letters of administration order of court or other matter disposing of or affecting the devolution of or transfer of title to the same to give or procure to be given to the Landlord notice in writing of such disposition or devolution or transfer of title with full particulars thereof and in the case of an underlease if required by the Landlord a copy thereof for registration and retention by it and also at the same time to produce or cause to be produced to them the document affecting or (as the case may be) evidencing such disposition or other matter and to pay or cause to be paid at the same time to the Landlord such reasonable fee appropriate at the time of registration (but not being less than £75.00 exclusive of VAT) in respect of any such notice perusal of documents and registration affecting the Premises Provided Always That in the case of contemporaneous transfer and mortgage the fee shall only be payable on one of such matters"

Clause 27 from lease states:
27.
Not at any time during the Term
27.1
to sublet the whole or any part of the Premises save that an underletting of the whole of the Premises with the prior written consent of the Landlord (such consent not to be unreasonably withheld or delayed) is permitted in the case of an assured shorthold tenancy agreement or such other instrument whereby security of tenure by the under-tenant is not created"

David Smith

10:43 AM, 20th August 2022, About a month ago

Reply to the comment left by Micky at 19/08/2022 - 08:30
I would say this is beyond any advice I can give now as the fee’s are mentioned in your lease.
I have just remortgage one of my flats and my lease contained a clause meaning I had to obtain consent from the freeholder to remortgage their fee was £150.00.
I had no choice but pay it.

Perhaps you could go to the 1st Tier Tribunal for their determination.
I would say the fees they are asking for do not seem to hight so may not succeed in an appeal but I think are pointless and unreasonable.

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