Managing Agent – now charging for not responding to sublet letter

by Property 118

7 months ago

Managing Agent – now charging for not responding to sublet letter

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Managing Agent – now charging for not responding to sublet letter

I’m in the process of selling one of my properties as I am fed up with the managing agent for the freeholder as they are just money grabbers and as a tenant I had in the property moved out I thought it would be a good time to sell.

Anyway, I’ve received a letter from the managing agents advising that a tenancy that I had registered has expired and they want to update their records, but have also said if I don’t respond to the letter within 28 days then an administration charge of £60 will be added to my account as they will have no option, but to carry out further investigations.

This isn’t a reminder letter by the way and I am wondering if this is a new tactic of theirs, but do wonder if this is deemed ‘fair’?

I can’t think of any other company that I’ve dealt with that charges if you don’t reply to a letter?

Mark



Comments

Neil Patterson

7 months ago

Hi Mark,

Unfortunately I have seen this quite a few times!

You could go to battle and check every clause of the lease, take solicitors advice and send threatening letters.

However, if you are selling is it worth your stress and if you do not disclose disputes to a potential purchaser I think it is possible you could yourself get sued for non-disclosure.

Mark Lynham

7 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Neil Patterson at 04/01/2018 - 08:29
Thanks Neil,

I also have another property with these as the agent and have ignored sublet letters for the 15 years that i've owned it (i obtained permission to sublet when i purchased the property and as far as im concerned thats all i needed to do as the lease doesnt state that it needs to be done continuously).
I get frustrated, also owning a small lettings company, that we are getting so heavily regulated when these companies seem to be left free to try and get as much money as they can from people.
they charge more to 'give consent' than i do to find a tenant, do credit checks, inventory, set up a tenancy etc...

fair point re the disclosure, i'd forgotten about that.

AA

7 months ago

My 2 cents worth - this admin charge sounds like a fine and as only statutory bodies can apply fines I would dismiss it.

Ian Narbeth

7 months ago

Take the line of least resistance. Write back to the agents and tell them that the tenant has left and the tenancy has not been renewed.. You are leaving so there is no point getting into an argument with the agents.

Chris Bunn

7 months ago

Hi mark,
I had the same treatment. I had to pay for permission to rent out one of my flats under a clause in the lease. This I did and I was granted the permission. By the managment company. They then tried to get me to pay again when ever the tennancy changed.
I pointed out that I had paid once and was granted the permission to rent. It did not say in the clause I had to pay for each tenant or lease I granted on the flat. I asked them to point out the clause to me. They were unable to do so and had no option but to agree with me that I was abiding by the clause originaly quoted.

Ian Narbeth

7 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Asif Ahmed at 04/01/2018 - 11:08"...only statutory bodies can apply fines I would dismiss it."
And if the managing agents refuse to provide information until the £60 is paid, what is Mark supposed to do? Fine in theory but scummy agents know they can bully leaseholders.
As Neil Patterson rightly says if you get into a dispute you have to disclose it and Mark could prejudice the sale.
The most I would do (if still bothered) is AFTER the sale has gone through write to the managing agents protesting at the £60 (which by the way Mark won't have paid if he follows my earlier advice) and copy the letter to all the other leaseholders. If the agents are members of ARLA or ARMA I would report them.

Puzzler

7 months ago

Not sure what your problem is, why would you not respond to their letter? all you have to do is say that the flat does not have a tenant and so no registration is required. If you don't and they make further enquiries this is a cost to them so not an unreasonable charge. You will have to tell them you are selling as they will need to provide an information pack.


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