Leaseholder in breach of lease. Causing serious problems. Can we do anything?

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  • L4NDLORD
    replied
    I wish they did. We have had Housing Associations as tenants. They are dreadful

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  • Gordon999
    replied
    I think which ruling party does not really matter because the problem is local to the MP's constituency. He was MP Labour (Co-op) .

    Your situation is different because your problem is a housing association, not local council. But even a housing association must obey the rules in a block of flats.

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  • HazeltonLane
    replied
    Thanks landlord-man
    I think we are beginning to realise there's not going to be a quick or easy solution.

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  • L4NDLORD
    replied
    The advice rendered by sglacy is correct. You have to follow the process he suggests. In my experience of HA's the staff turn over continuously and they dont really care.

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  • landlord-man
    replied
    Your Managing Agent / Freeholder should register with the ICO (they probably should be already).

    Then, install CCTV and a method of recording and nominate 1 or 2 people responsible for that data. Make sure you put up the correct signage with Data Controller details on it.

    DO NOT point is solely at that persons flat though, ensure it covers the flat but only as part of a wider area lol

    CCTV is cheap these days and a couple of cameras and recorder probably under £200.

    Phone the Police EVERY time there is a disturbance and get a crime number - the Police won't come out unless it's serious but you NEED those crime references.

    Keep logs of every incident and try to download/save any CCTV.

    You need to get every person in your flats involved in monitoring the situation.

    It is not a 5 minute solution, probably not even a year - but unless you gather evidence now you won't have anything later.

    Once you have 2 or 3 items of evidence THEN involve your MP (though most are useless so don't expect miracles).

    Ensure your freeholder etc writes to the Council every couple of months with details and dates you have gathered - you cant send them the CCTV though.

    Make sure the Police are aware you are gathering evidence as that WILL help them and show how serious you are taking this and how much it obvious affects you all.

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  • HazeltonLane
    replied
    Thanks sgclacy. The freeholder seems to be on board and has written to the HA but it seems the HA is unconcerned.
    I will suggest your recommended course of action.

    Gordon999 We are thinking of contacting our MP as a last resort. Unfortunately she is not a member of the ruling party. (Was yours?)

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  • sgclacy
    replied
    You should ask that the freeholder makes an application under Section 168(4) Commonhold and Leasehold Reform Act 2002 for a determination of a breach. This would be dealt with by the FTT and if they fail they have very limited powers to award costs and would only do so if your actions were frivolous or vexatious

    The housing association would have to engage in the process and may make them realize the problems their sub-tenants are creating for you

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  • eagle2
    replied
    I suggest that the RMC continues to correspond with the HA and points out ongoing breaches of the lease, It should have a claim for damages.

    It is extremely unlikely that you will obtain forfeiture and it is not usually worth following that route because you would not be able to collect service charges etc whilst the claim proceeds.

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  • NaomiB
    replied
    Maybe the leaseholders who are most concerned should club together to buy a decent spy, or CCTV, camera to gain evidence for the police. A big notice should be put up in the entrance hall so everyone is aware of it.

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  • HazeltonLane
    replied
    eagle2 Thanks for your input. We have done that and listed all the breaches of the lease. Their official written response was that they have issued a warning to the tenants but don't intend to evict them. The HA is very concerned about their tenants' antisocial behaviour and are doing their best to rectify it (yadda yadda yadda).

    Unofficially in conversation they have told us that the incidents that have happened so far aren't serious enough to justify forfeiture of their lease and so they aren't worried about that. They have their own legal team, incidentally, as they are one of the large HAs.

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  • eagle2
    replied
    The RMC should contact the Housing Association and list all the terms of the lease which it is in breach and give it say 21 days to put them right,



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  • HazeltonLane
    replied
    It looks like the Housing Association is not going to deal with this. On the face of it they are "Investigating" but have said they have no intention of making these people homeless". Apparently moving them to different accommodation would just be shifting the problem onto someone else's doorstep (this is the closest they've come to admitting there is actually a problem).

    Apparently their behaviour isn't bad enough to convince a judge to evict them. It seems they are waiting for these people or their "guests" to attack someone or do serious damage to the building (more serious than kicking the door in).

    Would the Housing Ombudsman be of any use or is this just as toothless as most organisations of this type?

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  • HazeltonLane
    replied
    Thanks ... that is very useful advice.

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  • Gordon999
    replied
    Many years ago, our building had a similar problem at a ground floor flat that was rented to local council. The flat was occupied by a problem young lady, who had boy friends selling drugs after midnight from the flat. One of the lady residents ( mum with young children) living in the adjacent flat, made complaints to the local MP, who persuaded the local Council to move the tenant out to another address..

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  • lampshade
    replied
    I totally sympathise with you, IMO private blocks should always remain owner/occupiers and rented for rentals only

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