Managing agent threatening with legal action

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    Managing agent threatening with legal action

    When I went to court over service charges the judge put in the order that I, the Defendant is not preclude from raising issues as to the actual sums in future accounts where the demand of 14th December was based on estimates. From these estimates my account should be £2500 in credit. I was issued with new demands which did not take this into account and I have emailed the agent over 30 times since May plus around 20 phone calls and one meeting to resolve this. The response I get is they have to get instructions from the freeholder. First they tried to claim back the £800 which was offered as a settlement on the day, they have however backed down on this. What we are stuck on is a charge on the service charge demand 14th of December of £900 to do with the major building work. They want me to pay this at a 100% cost, despite it already being listed on the invoice which I have paid my 50% of. There is no separate invoice of £900 and opening the roof is listed as £400 on the builders invoice. They say I am responsible as they entered the loft through the roof instead of the hatch in my flat, despite their builder saying if they go through my flay my tenant and her 18 month boy was not allowed in the flat while they carried out the structural repairs to the party wall in the loft, hence why it was easier for them to access through the roof as we already had scaffolding. What I have tried to explain to the agent

    1. My lease states the service charge means one half of total expenditure
    2. I have paid my one half of the total building works which includes the opening of the roof
    3. They were told in court that they can’t charge 100% costs in the service charge as my lease doesn’t allow it. This is why we ended up in court as they wrongly demanded 100% on several other charges
    4. If I pay a further £900 after already paying my half share of the building work I would have paid 150% of this charge

    To make this matter further complicated, after a leak in my flat and two years of dealing with the insurance company, they decided to give me a cash settlement of £3997. The agent has taken this money to put against the new service charge demands. Bearing in mind that the demands for this year are estimated costs for building work​​​​​, not based on builders quote just what the managing agent thinks it might cost. Despite them withholding my insurance payment and what my account should be in credit of (this credit is not showing on their new demands making the sum demanded incorrect) they owe me money. This is one of my many emails to the managing agent to which I have had no response other than we are waiting for instructions from the freeholder.



    Dear Mr Xxxx

    In regards to your letter dated 16th August 2019.

    1. After receiving confirmation from the insurance company that the money had been forwarded to you, I made a phone call to Maureen on the 6th of August 2019 requesting her to forward the cheque to me. You have failed to do so and you are still holding my money despite my request.

    2. I have made myself very clear on this matter and the court have made an order which you need to follow. The £836.99 was offered by your barrister to reach a settlement on the day and as it was accepted it is part of a court order which can not be changed or renegotiated. What you are trying to do is not only immoral but also illegal.

    The total cost of the building work was £13,872 which my 50% share is 6,936. As the service charge demand estimated £8538,60 this gives me a credit of £1,602.60.

    The £900 that you are trying to charge extra is not chargeable under the terms of my lease as I am only liable for 50% of total cost.
    The invoice from the builder has opening of roof listed under item 6.9 which means that I have already paid my 50% of that cost with the £6,936 giving me a further credit of £900. Surely you are not asking me to pay 150%??
    It was pointed out to you in court that you can’t charge 100% costs in the service charge.

    This total my credit to £2502.60 which should show on the service charge demands that you have issued as the once’s forwarded are not correct.

    Service charge demands issued, which do not show my credit of £2,502.60
    £832.15, £4,776.04 and £100 totals £5,708.19.

    At the meeting on the 5th of July 2019 we did discuss the insurance money and you agreed that it was a separate issue from service charge. It is clear that you are not standing by your word as you have withheld my insurance money.

    £5,708.19-2,502.60=£3,205.59 is what is owed on your demands,

    £3,997-3,205.59=£791.41 is what you owe me as you are illegally holding my insurance money.

    I will be expecting you to forward a check of £791.41 within the next 10 days, otherwise my solicitor will issue court proceedings and all costs will be sought from you.



    I have today received a letter stating if I do not pay the £100 ground rent within the next 7 days they will start legal action. This is despite my last email being answered with we are waiting for instructions from the freeholder.

    The ground rent I owe of £100 is already calculated for in the email above showing they owe me money, not the other way around.

    How do I proceed as I am not getting anywhere with the agent? So sorry for the long paragraph but I am at my wits end!


    #2
    Hi i have the same type of man agent who is also my freeholder, is this a flat? are you named on the insurance as a interested party? how was the insurance payout meant to process ie do you have any confirmation that the payment was coming directly to you, if yes complain to the ombudsman. If its a commercial property its much harder as its unregulated. It seems Freeholders can do exactly as they please. id go and get further legal advice and go from there.

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      #3
      Two flats, mine is leasehold and the other one is freehold. Freeholder employs the managing agent. The managing agent insisted that the insurance money was paid directly to them rather than me.

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        #4
        Bad situation with the FH owning one. You really need legal advice. Try leasehold knowledge partnership for advice. If your on Facebook join the National leasehold campaign. I wish you the best of luck.

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