Fees for Subletting leasehold flat

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  • Fees for Subletting leasehold flat

    Hi All - I am looking for some advice as have no idea what to do.

    I have received a letter from the managing agents of my BTL property (e&m who I pay my ground rent to) saying they are acting as agents to Proxima GR Properties Ltd (never heard of them but assume they must be leaseholders) and that their records indicate my property is being sublet - e&m are asking me to complete a form with current tenancy details and all previous tenancies and to pay fees of the following within 14 days.

    - to register a new tenancy £130
    - to renew an existing tenancy £65
    - retrospective consent surcharge £45

    As a bit of background this was my dad's flat which he purchased as a BTL and I inherited this 4 years ago after he died and have continued to run it is as a BTL. There have been 2 tenants during the time I have owned it (using an estate agent to manage it all/set AST in place etc) and the current tenants have renewed their 12 month AST for the past 3 years. I have a mortgage on the property which was all sorted through probate so imagine (but have no proof) that the leaseholders would have been aware that the property was being sublet as also my mortgage is a BTL mortgage and pretty sure I had to pay managing agent fees for the changing registration names as my mortgage lender name is on the title deeds also. The property has a 125 year lease with 94 years remaining.

    I have had a look through the documents I have including a copy of the original lease (with the original owner details etc) and the only thing I can find is within the Covenants Enforceable by the Lessor and the Management Company section which states;

    "Not at any time during the said term to sublet the whole or any part of the demised premised save that an underletting of the whole of the demised premises (with the prior written consent of the Lessor and any mortgagee of the demised premises) is permitted in the case of a term certain not exceeding three years let at a rack rent".

    Either way it doesn't say anything about fees in the lease or deeds and the wording confuses me as I would have thought consent to sublet would be a one off rather than for every new tenant/renewal of AST? As such I don't know where I stand. Personally I have not sought any consent to sublet (I didn't even realise I had to prior to receiving this letter - tbh I didn't even know what leasehold was until I inherited the flat).

    So my questions are

    1. Do I have to pay these fees and which of the fees actually apply in this case?
    2. Do I actually need to need to seek consent for every new tenancy or when renewing a tenancy?

  • #2
    See here: https://forums.landlordzone.co.uk/fo...ve-fee-request

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    • #3
      There are quite a few threads on this forum covering this subject so it's a good idea to read around the issue.

      Do check your lease thoroughly especially Landlords Covenants and any restrictive clauses. Basically, if your lease does not state that you have to get consent to sub let or to pay fees for the same or for assignments of transfer etc, then you do not have to.

      However this will not stop some management agents from trying to tell you that you do have to and to pursue you aggressively to comply with their requests or else.

      They most likely do not know what the terms of your lease are. A well known tactic is to write a generic letter to all those owners who have a different address to the property and then put the pressure on you to comply with their requests.

      I would suggest getting legal advice to confirm your position as regards your lease and if you decide to challenge as it is often very hard to communicate directly with these kind of companies. They usually reply to any challenge by the layman by simply repeating their claims and their threats.

      It is also a good idea to get together with other leaseholders in your development.

      Caveat - IMHO of course.....

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      • #4
        Erm - is the managing agent for P-GR and collects your annual ground rent payment and the demand note will show P-GR is the freeholder of the building. . You are the Leaseholder because you hold a lease on the flat property. .

        On the LEASE website , you search the past LVT / FTT decisions and you will find the name of these companies coming up many times.

        if the wording in your lease does not mention the lessee is required to pay £130 , £65 and £45, you can ask them to prove its in your lease.

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