My garages are demised to adjoining house- sue lessees?

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    My garages are demised to adjoining house- sue lessees?

    I have a flat with 2 garages underneath it. I own the freehold to it all.

    The garages are let to a house next door, under a 99yr lease setup by the developer.

    The house was sold last year but I wasnt told who the new owners were (there is a clause in the lease that I should be told, and paid £40).

    The house has to pay 1/3 the cost of me insuring the whole property, yet they havent paid me. They are stating that as I have a tenant in the flat the insurance is far too high, yet I have explained to them that them leasing the garage has made it commercial insurance and that is also the reason for the premium. If I lived there, the insurance would still be higher due to their garage lease etc.

    I have sent them 4 recorded delivery letters (after paying £6 to get their names off Land Registry), but the only reply I got was "I might look at it when I get around to it".

    My first request for payment was in November 2008 and I had sent letters roughly each month until April this year.

    I have now started a claim thru the small claims moneyonline website.

    Can anyone tell me if my charges are correct?

    I have charged the £40 notice fee, 1/3 of the insurance cost, £10 each for the 4 recorded delivery letters sent, £6 for the Land Registry fee and the relevant court charges (plus interest).

    I believe that the court will allow £10/letter but cannot find any references to this type of charge - does anyone have experience and/or links to previous case files.

    Any help would be appreciated.

    Also, they are now refusing to honour other parts of the lease, like repainting the garage door every 3 yrs, as they say it doesnt need doing.

    At what stage do you think I should think about action to have the lease torn up with them losing the garage alltogether.

    Any experts and/or professionals on here (if so, what would the costs be to try to get the garage lease cancelled).

    Thank You

    PS whoever said the small claims route is easy needs to think again

    #2
    It sounds like you need a solicitor on the case. His/her fees would be payable by the defaulting lessee of garages (if lease says so).
    JEFFREY SHAW, solicitor [and Topic Expert], Nether Edge Law*
    1. Public advice is believed accurate, but I accept no legal responsibility except to direct-paying private clients.
    2. Telephone advice: see http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?t=34638.
    3. For paid advice about conveyancing/leaseholds/L&T, contact me* and become a private client.
    4. *- Contact info: click on my name (blue-highlight link).

    Comment


      #3
      Originally posted by jeffrey View Post
      It sounds like you need a solicitor on the case. His/her fees would be payable by the defaulting lessee of garages (if lease says so).
      Unless the T in his defence at the LVT or other court with jurisdiction requests the tribunal to make an order under s.20C of the LTA 1985, precluding the LL from reclaiming costs of proceedings (notwithstanding any clause of the lease allowing him to do so).

      Comment


        #4
        Originally posted by dominic View Post
        Unless the T in his defence at the LVT or other court with jurisdiction requests the tribunal to make an order under s.20C of the LTA 1985, precluding the LL from reclaiming costs of proceedings (notwithstanding any clause of the lease allowing him to do so).
        No. That LTA provison applies if T is long-leaseholder of a house; here, T's property is merely a garage. Here's s.18(1)'s definition of the scope of the Act's service charge sections and s.38's definition of 'dwelling'. I've added underlining.

        18. Meaning of service charge and relevant costs.

        (1) In the following provisions of this Act service charge means an amount payable by a tenant of a dwelling as part of or in addition to the rent:
        (a) which is payable, directly or indirectly, for services, repairs, maintenance or insurance or the landlords costs of management, and
        (b) the whole or part of which varies or may vary according to the relevant costs.

        38. Minor definitions.

        In this Act:
        ...
        dwelling means a building or part of a building occupied or intended to be occupied as a separate dwelling together with any yard, garden, outhouses and appurtenances belonging to it or usually enjoyed with it;
        ...
        JEFFREY SHAW, solicitor [and Topic Expert], Nether Edge Law*
        1. Public advice is believed accurate, but I accept no legal responsibility except to direct-paying private clients.
        2. Telephone advice: see http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?t=34638.
        3. For paid advice about conveyancing/leaseholds/L&T, contact me* and become a private client.
        4. *- Contact info: click on my name (blue-highlight link).

        Comment


          #5
          Originally posted by jeffrey View Post
          No. That LTA provison applies if T is long-leaseholder of a house; here, T's property is merely a garage. Here's s.18(1)'s definition of the scope of the Act's service charge sections and s.38's definition of 'dwelling'. I've added underlining.

          18. Meaning of service charge and relevant costs.

          (1) In the following provisions of this Act service charge means an amount payable by a tenant of a dwelling as part of or in addition to the rent:
          (a) which is payable, directly or indirectly, for services, repairs, maintenance or insurance or the landlords costs of management, and
          (b) the whole or part of which varies or may vary according to the relevant costs.

          38. Minor definitions.

          In this Act:
          ...
          dwelling means a building or part of a building occupied or intended to be occupied as a separate dwelling together with any yard, garden, outhouses and appurtenances belonging to it or usually enjoyed with it;
          ...
          There is an argument that the "dwelling" comprises:

          a. the non-leased house; and
          b. the garages belonging (under a lease) to it "or usually enjoyed with it".

          Service charges are payable therefore in relation to that dwelling, and accordingly s.20C applies.

          Comment


            #6
            LOL - you chaps can discuss your issue all you like BUT, my question has nothing to do with tenants/landlords.

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by bristoluk View Post
              LOL - you chaps can discuss your issue all you like BUT, my question has nothing to do with tenants/landlords.

              It has everything to do with tenants/landlords!

              You, as freeholder of the garages, are the landlord to the lessee or tenant of the garages!

              lessee/tenant is used interchangeably in legislation.

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by dominic View Post
                There is an argument that the "dwelling" comprises:

                a. the non-leased house; and
                b. the garages belonging (under a lease) to it "or usually enjoyed with it".

                Service charges are payable therefore in relation to that dwelling, and accordingly s.20C applies.
                No. Here, the service charge is payable:
                a. for a garage; and
                b. unde a lease of only a garage.
                It's not a dwelling, so s.20C cannot apply.
                JEFFREY SHAW, solicitor [and Topic Expert], Nether Edge Law*
                1. Public advice is believed accurate, but I accept no legal responsibility except to direct-paying private clients.
                2. Telephone advice: see http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?t=34638.
                3. For paid advice about conveyancing/leaseholds/L&T, contact me* and become a private client.
                4. *- Contact info: click on my name (blue-highlight link).

                Comment


                  #9
                  Originally posted by jeffrey View Post
                  No. Here, the service charge is payable:
                  a. for a garage; and
                  b. unde a lease of only a garage.
                  It's not a dwelling, so s.20C cannot apply.
                  We can argue all day... but if I was acting for the lessee in this instant, my argument would definitely be that the garage (which is usually enjoyed with the house) together with the house comprises the "dwelling". i.e. the garage forms part of a dwelling.

                  But... I agree whether this argument is teneble is another matter.
                  Last edited by dominic; 09-07-2009, 12:00 PM. Reason: typos

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Garage has a different reversioner from house, in any case- so how could garage's reversioner be bound?
                    JEFFREY SHAW, solicitor [and Topic Expert], Nether Edge Law*
                    1. Public advice is believed accurate, but I accept no legal responsibility except to direct-paying private clients.
                    2. Telephone advice: see http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?t=34638.
                    3. For paid advice about conveyancing/leaseholds/L&T, contact me* and become a private client.
                    4. *- Contact info: click on my name (blue-highlight link).

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by jeffrey View Post
                      Garage has a different reversioner from house, in any case- so how could garage's reversioner be bound?
                      There is no such restriction in the definition of dwelling in the LTA 1985.

                      Garage's reversioner is bound to the provisions of the LTA 1985 because (assuming my argument is correct for a moment) the garage forms part of a dwelling notwithstanding that part of that dwelling is owned freehold (the house) and part leasehold.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        No. The 'house' for this purpose is the separate house where lives the lessee of the garage.
                        JEFFREY SHAW, solicitor [and Topic Expert], Nether Edge Law*
                        1. Public advice is believed accurate, but I accept no legal responsibility except to direct-paying private clients.
                        2. Telephone advice: see http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?t=34638.
                        3. For paid advice about conveyancing/leaseholds/L&T, contact me* and become a private client.
                        4. *- Contact info: click on my name (blue-highlight link).

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Originally posted by jeffrey View Post
                          No. The 'house' for this purpose is the separate house where lives the lessee of the garage.
                          In real terms yes, but not according to the definition of of "dwelling" under the LTA 1985.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Originally posted by dominic View Post
                            In real terms yes, but not according to the definition of of "dwelling" under the LTA 1985.
                            Still no! "Dwelling" is the lessee's house elsewhere.
                            The garage is not a building or part of a building occupied or intended to be occupied as a separate dwelling.
                            JEFFREY SHAW, solicitor [and Topic Expert], Nether Edge Law*
                            1. Public advice is believed accurate, but I accept no legal responsibility except to direct-paying private clients.
                            2. Telephone advice: see http://www.landlordzone.co.uk/forums/showthread.php?t=34638.
                            3. For paid advice about conveyancing/leaseholds/L&T, contact me* and become a private client.
                            4. *- Contact info: click on my name (blue-highlight link).

                            Comment


                              #15
                              No.

                              “dwelling” means a building or part of a building occupied or intended to be occupied as a separate dwelling together with any yard, garden, outhouses and appurtenances belonging to it or usually enjoyed with it;

                              My emphasis added.

                              Comment

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