One bad apple?

One bad apple?

9:59 AM, 1st October 2021, About 2 months ago 12

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I know this is an issue that every landlord encounters at some point, unfortunately, it’s now my turn to deal with this.

I have a flat in a purpose-built block of 6, containing 5 rentals and 1 owner-occupied all nicely kept, one of the owner-occupiers organises the maintenance and us landlords pay our share all very civilised.

Well, it used to be, one of the flats was sold and is now owner-occupied, however, her boyfriend is causing some issues, claiming to have planning permission to install a driveway for his campervan, being hostile to anyone in the block and then installing external power sockets onto the gable end of the flats running a cable upstairs to his girlfriends flat.

The planning consent is total nonsense, the power sockets criminal damage, not to mention the safety concerns he doesn’t own the property, but he is causing mayhem with his hostile attitude and brazen disregard for normal living.

The question is, how do we get him to behave reasonably and get back to our previous humdrum normality?

On the positive front, myself the other owner and my fellow landlords are all united that this has to stop. I welcome the sage advice of the 118 members.

Amazonia Starbuck



Comments

by john glynn

11:55 AM, 1st October 2021, About 2 months ago

Hi Amazonia, These people simply cannot act unilaterally. Whether they have a share of freehold or not there will be terms in their lease that will forbid such actions. Are you a Right to Manage management company? Do you own the freehold? If so write to them and advise them they are in breach of their leasehold obligations. If not then report them to the management company or their agent. If that doesn’t work you may have to seek legal redress.

by Mark Alexander

13:57 PM, 1st October 2021, About 2 months ago

If the other five landlords want to take action I suggest you contact Cotswold Barristers and request a free initial 15 minute Zoom call between you all and a Barrister called Charles King.

PS - to give him a ‘heads up’ I have alerted Charles to this thread.

by Freda Blogs

14:23 PM, 1st October 2021, About 2 months ago

I had a similar situation some years back - I was a Director of the Management Company but it may still be a tactic you can use as the five other owners in the block.

The advice I received was to write to the mortgage company of the flat owner, which you should be able to find out by downloading the title from Land Registry (£3). Mortgage companies take a very dim view of mortgagors breaching their lease terms in case it diminishes their security. They may also have some concerns about the boyfriend living there.

You may wish to forewarn the owner/girlfriend first so she has an opportunity to deal with things before it gets escalated to the mortgage company.

Good luck.

by Mark Alexander

14:38 PM, 1st October 2021, About 2 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Freda Blogs at 01/10/2021 - 14:23
Superb suggestion!

by john glynn

15:42 PM, 1st October 2021, About 2 months ago

Freda’s suggestion is a very good one. We had a situation where one of our lessees was accumulating substantial arrears with his service charge. We wrote to his mortgage company and suffice to say all arrears were promptly paid and have been on the due date ever since.

by DSR

15:57 PM, 1st October 2021, About 2 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Mark Alexander at 01/10/2021 - 14:38
I agree great idea 🙂

by Darren Peters

16:52 PM, 1st October 2021, About 2 months ago

Does informing the mortgage company only work for arrears or also for damage to the property?

I always thought that mortgage companies are hot on arrears because the arrears provides a means to the Freeholder to take back the Lease and leave the lender with no security.

by Mark Alexander

17:15 PM, 1st October 2021, About 2 months ago

Reply to the comment left by Darren Peters at 01/10/2021 - 16:52
The reason I think it’s such a good idea is that any and all breaches of the lease can ultimately carry the same consequences

by Puzzler

8:43 AM, 2nd October 2021, About 2 months ago

You can check on your council's website if there has been any planning activity. Seems doubtful since as neighbours you would likely be notified.

That said, planning operates independently of other agreements but it would highlight whether or not he is telling the truth. Do you have this claim in writing so you can use it as evidence.

External power sockets - wow, is he doing this himself? what about your EICR certificate? This would need to be inspected and your insurer notified

Whoever manages the block needs to write to the owner formally and say that the lease is breached quoting relevant clauses and that legal action will ensue if the matter continues or not rectified.

The driveway is likely to be in a communal area - what is there before? If it belongs to their flat then it still counts as an alteration, likely requiring consent

by AMAZONIA STARBUCK

18:56 PM, 2nd October 2021, About 2 months ago

Apologies , I didn't mention the property is in Scotland, but as ever sound advice from everyone.
The planning permission is total nonsense, the current concern, is do we have building insurance with amateur electrical installations strapped to the building.

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