Can a freeholder refuse consent to person becoming leaseholder if reasonable grounds?

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    Can a freeholder refuse consent to person becoming leaseholder if reasonable grounds?


    Hi All,

    I have a bit of a tricky situation - I'll try to keep it brief. I have researched the below a bit and not really getting very far, so it would be great if someone could offer some pointers.

    I'm a freeholder in a converted house: I live upstairs and there are people downstairs. I have had 4 years of non-payment of insurance/maintenance, theft from garden, threats to hurt me/kicking on my front door, and being called the most abusive language on an almost daily basis by 3 alcoholic residents (all brothers in their late '60s) and then there is a fourth brother who doesn't live there but is the most abusive.

    None of them understand they have a leasehold property/what this means. I have seen a solicitor who confirmed they are breaching a number of covenants so a letter is being prepared. Their philosophy seems to be 'pay nothing but we own it all'. My invoices are always followed by more abusive language and threats to come to my flat and hurt me if I post another letter.

    The leaseholder has recently passed away, 3 days before a deadline for the small claims court, and I understand that the particularly offensive brother is planning on becoming the new leaseholder. In just the last week, I have heard him making comments that are totally hostile and intimidating, and I know I am going to have an even worse problem with him.

    My questions are:
    1. Can a freeholder object to a person becoming a leaseholder if they have reasonable grounds and if the leaseholder has no intention of adhering to terms and when I have got lots of audio recordings of his language/threats directed very much at me?
    2. The 2 other brothers are planning on staying there and paying him rent. If there is no clause re. subletting, can a freeholder still object to the leasehold being sublet, again on reasonable grounds?

    I just thought I'd ask these questions prior to my next appointment with my solicitor as it is 2 weeks away. Thanks to anyone who can offer some advice.

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