Ground rent Demand by agents and threats of legal action

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    Ground rent Demand by agents and threats of legal action

    Hi All

    I have a residential flat and a long lease.

    The freeholder uses an agency to send out ground rent demands. The ground rent is £200 per years and is charges £100 every 6 months .

    I have spoken to a number of other flat owners who also owe quite a lot f ground rent some have not paid for over 5 years.

    The management company collecting the ground rent adds £75 every time rent is not paid or its paid late. sometimes they will take it ff on the basis rent is paid but for some leaseholders this has added considerable costs to the overall money owed.

    Now we are told that unless all payments are made , they will make application for forfeiture and write to the lenders

    The service charge is collected separately the leaseholders got together several years ago and formed a RTM company and that is ok.

    Can the landlord onto court and apply for forfeiture if the sums are over £500........ or does he have to go to the tribunal first

    also the charges by the management company £75 each time the ground rent is not paid , are they reasonable and will they form part of the claim at both the tribunal or at forfeiture proceedings.

    On the basis the notices were served correctly do the leaseholders have any defence or chances of fighting the forfeiture and tribunal , or should we just pay all the sums asked

    many thanks


    #2
    First Tier Tribunal don't deal with ground rent.
    Agents will most likely approach lenders first who will probably pay on threat of forfeiture. You could argue the £75 as being unreasonable but doubt court will have much sympathy when you just ignore paying correctly due rent
    Your best bet is offer a settlement and try and get the costs down a bit.
    In future the RTM could collect the ground rent on behalf of the freeholder and save you grief....

    Comment


      #3
      thank you section 20z for the reply, but can I ask ... can the landlord just go to the court in the usual manner of small claims and claim back all the rent plus the admin charges .......... am I right only if they get judgement can they go for lease forfeiture...... or is there a separate application to court for forfeiture action right from the beginning..... ...

      Comment


        #4
        The ground rent is a contractual obligation under the lease and must be paid. It ground rent arrears are claimed in the court, you will lose .

        The freeholder can start proceedings for forfeit of your lease when ground rent arrears exceed £350 over 3 years.

        Why are the others refusing to pay the ground rent for past 5 years ?

        Comment


          #5
          Whether a landlord or his agent can make an administration charge for late payment of rent depends on what the lease says. What does your lease say?

          Comment


            #6
            thank you I will check my lease, the other people not paying are just being cheeky or the landlord has let out the property etc

            Comment


              #7
              GR is payable contractually under the lease BUT is only payable IF correctly demanded > https://www.pdclaw.co.uk/insights/ge...demands-right/

              As for extra charges for non payment, only IF the lease allows, further this would be an "administration charge", so would have to be demanded in accordance with > https://www.lease-advice.org/advice-...arges-england/

              Further whilst FTT has no jurisdiction over GR, it DOES have jurisdiction of Admin Charges, you can apply to see if extra charges are payable and/or are they reasonable in amount.
              Advice given is based on my experience representing myself as a leaseholder both in the County Court and at Leasehold Valuation Tribunals.

              I do not accept any liability to you in relation to the advice given.

              It is always recommended you seek further advice from a solicitor or legal expert.

              Always read your lease first, it is the legally binding contract between leaseholder and freeholder.

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by Gordon999 View Post
                The freeholder can start proceedings for forfeit of your lease when ground rent arrears exceed £350 over 3 years.
                I understand the following applies.

                a) Forfeit the lease if arrears exceed £ 350.
                b) Forfeit the lease if arrears have been in arrears for more than 3 years, even if under £ 350.

                And not -- waiting 3 years to go to court if under £ 350.

                Comment

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