Management Company issues and Service Charge

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    Management Company issues and Service Charge

    A bit of a complicated situation.

    I co own a property. I live at the property and the other owner lives at another address. I just got a bill for unpaid service charges that have built up over 6 years as the service charge went up but the standing order that was set up stayed the same. (I thought it was a direct debit as it wasn’t going from my account) When I moved into the property I got letters for service charges and correspondences was coming to the property. Then the developer went bust and a new management company took over and a lot of the correspondence dried up. I complained about lack of correspondence and transparency because I hadn’t received any statements etch regarding the service charge but I didn’t’ get any satisfactory responses and I gave up trying. Fast forward to 6 years later I get a letter from the solicitors. I replied to the solicitor saying it’s the first time I’ve heard of this bill but I have 30 days to reply.

    I have asked the management company for any correspondence regarding this charge and haven’t heard anything back. They told me that they had a different address as my correspondence address - my co lease owner.

    So my questions are
    1. They knew my address and would have had a the other address on file somewhere as we bought it off plan but they were sending correspondence to the property address initially and we never contacted them to change the correspondence address.
    2. The bill received was for 2020 and 2021 as though we paid nothing during this period but some monies were paid by via standing order.
    3. If they didn’t send requests for payment at the time can we still be charged for it? (I read there is an 18 month rule)

    I am actually fine with paying the backdated service charge, I just don’t think that the management agency are doing their jobs properly. They don’t send out spending statements or accounts, I feel they are charging us for things that aren’t being done like cleaning and window cleaning among other issues. I feel like this is an opportunity to hold them accountable for their failings.

    I have asked them for a breakdown of how they have come up with the service charge bill to see if I can challenge it and get them to send us the statements and bills so we actually know what we’re paying for. They haven’t responded but to me yet.

    Originally posted by Bokun View Post
    A bit of a complicated situation.
    That's leasehold. Yes there is an 18 month rule but I'll bet a jam sandwich the agent has a file of letters sent to you contempor (?) at the time. All date stamped and ready for court. If you can pay - pay. Pay under protest in bold type if necessary, but pay. Complain later. It will work out cheaper.

    Do not read my offerings, based purely on my research or experience as a lessee, as legal advice. If you need legal advice please see a solicitor.


      If they have contacted the co owner, that is sufficient but you can notify them to address correspondence to you in future.
      You are entitled to receive full details of the actual charges and to inspect the accounts and the supporting invoices etc.
      Obviously, they must account for all payments which you have made.
      There is an 18 month rule but you should check that the correspondence was not sent to your co owner.
      Proving that cleaning and window cleaning has not been carried out is not so easy, presumably they will produce invoices from contractors so you would need to produce your own invoices to demonstrate that you have been obliged to arrange your own window cleaning and you would need other leaseholders to support your claim,
      I would not pay the full amount under protest as suggested at #2, I would pay only the amount which you accept is reasonable and leave the management company to prove that the remainder is payable,
      Are you a member of the management company? If so, perhaps you can contact other members and appoint new directors. Alternatively, you may wish to consider RTM so that you can manage the block yourselves,


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