We investigate leasehold properties nightmare fees charge £26,364 when buying a house seems harder than ever 3 million of Us opted for often cheaper properties many of them Tidworth lived in who was very very exciting we gonna show you the owners of these properties could be losing out and we’re talking about so much more than just a few quid Liam Hemsworth undervalued flatlining property companies are still making money leasehold flats billion pound service charges every year according to some of the Leaseholders we’ve spoken to the system is deeply flawed buying a leasehold means you buy the right only to occupy property in for a certain period of time usually however you still have a landlord the freeholder who owns the property outright leaseholder service charges and maintenance costs mostly what needs doing and who does it libretto bought a one bedroom flat in Hounslow almost 15 years ago Olivia since 98 my purchases was the luxury flats something new nobody’s lived in it was very very exciting Leaseholders in the block rollers problems began when has started going up we started with 738 for the flat but now I’m paying that almost for a quarter is your service almost four times as good as it was when you first moved in no anywhere better.
It’s much much worse dipak Shah £3000 service charges despite the residents altogether paying 18 1/2 thousand pounds on general repairs feeling of disrepair. Not many people all over the country has been hit by the recession sending the increase in service charges difficult to deal with for me at the moment it’s is because I am struggling with it I have to put it on my mortgage but I refused to be forced out of here delete all consultant James Butler they’re taking their case to the a place where homeowners can challenge costs we don’t dispute landlord abilities to retainer they must be reasonable in this scenario we are arguing that they are neither fair nor reason at the tribunal both sides will argue their case to Barristers working out just what is reasonable can be a costly process something ml om property management from the block about been operating under new owners since earlier this year repaired affect safety charges is down to unpredictable costs such as vandalism consult with customers payment plans to help spread costs disputes like this could be about to rise latest research estimates 40% of all new builds in England and Wales.
Now leasehold what is Norwich Fulham house residents say they suffered years of neglect Leaseholders have been paying almost £1,000 a year to their managing agent but for what ashamed see nothing building slowly deteriorating open the windows I seem to be the most not too bad Luke Wilson one of Neighbours showed me a leasehold flat that’s become uninhabitable printing industry price so it’s having a lot of water in it you’ve got the guttering going along here that has been leaking for ages but also this water goes all the way down to the flats below the flat the other side has got a black Wall all the way down the new freeholder but the development last year needed improvements other reasonable costs estimated costs it’s coming in the building Sainsbury working isn’t inspiring confidence reasonable estimated costs are what is almost £200,000 for replacing this canopy and walkway any attention this work they’re planning to do is to replace the entire walkway that we’re going to walk along now and I believe the canopy above it refurbish a wood decorator to Ripley special adhesive some of the leaseholder said the proposed works have not been explained to them properly consultation period seem to have closed before vacation demanded before any work was done.
Rios leasehold consultant James Butler to look at the paperwork I think it is a very confusing bunch of documents the landlord and Tenant Act basically layout very very and structures to how in different situations list should be consulted if the landlord does not clarify this patient process they come in for trouble and much further down the line if this matter went before a tribunal Rick is in the same situation as many other Leaseholders in the country the work is necessary for his this tune request sent a bill for more than £6,000 from a company named here as Earlham house management the company say Leaseholders can nominate quote their choice of contractor but in another letter they say a company called Hackwood homes will be undertaking the site development now this is where it gets really interesting cost to have a quick crash around on the internet and you’ll find in Rick’s case that the three organisations owner managing agent and contractor AllShare exactly the same address the same company they keeping it in house so quite possibly the bills that they’re sending and the quotes they got for the work to be done may not be that competitive gold properties told dispatchers they and 60 of the flats themselves in the development good homes are refurbishing those units belgard St therefore both sharing renovation costs.
Affecting the whole site and are finding the correct consultation procedure competitive tenders against the law for landlords to maintain and service leasehold properties however a recent report found problems with such arrangements Chelsea keeper swanky development on the banks of the tennis in Surrey the Marcus Perkins and his wife this was it it was just fantastic wonderful who he was hit with a near doubling of Bostik 2402 some of the 244 Leaseholders claim there were various services which he should be part of the deal but I frankly you’re paying extortionate fees for the CCTV trainee extortionate fees for entry system change to medium in Indian Miley sadly but it was part of the price of the apartment 2008 the residents began investigate discovered the freeholder building singers family tree Vincent tchenguiz and his brother Robert were once on the Sunday Times Rich List with an estimated worth of some 850 million pounds Chelsea residents spent 12 month digging around in guess what Chambers family trust with complicated group of companies control for CCTV the intercom and arranged insurance took the case to the leasehold tribunal towards themselves.
Service charges to the LVT and High Court summer before the Chambers family trust bought into the property managed to get 86000 service charges in total from the two cases in another over half a million pounds the changes family trust holders the residents should have asked me bought the connected companies after those firms have been appointed Trust Property Management recent reports and leaseholder complaints about service charges Risen 46% in the past two years alone such situations Leaseholders can get together and exercise their right to manage their building urban owners claims this can be well worthwhile people saving 100 pills coming up it’s not just private landlords people are complaining about we meet the Leaseholders overcharged £100,000 buy their own Council purchase is investigating has some leasehold homeowners hobby massages but it would see it’s not just private landlord your local council for being on the actu Jackie Duncan’s family have lived on the Tremlett Grove estate in North since 1969 my Mum and Dad moved in hearing is brand new 43 years ago I lived here as well until I got married 18 years ago and then you decided to buy it help at 5 Jackie book the council flat for her mum Right to Buy scheme in 2001 two years ago the council it was now they’re freeholder decided to carry out repairs.
The Block flats each leaseholder has to pay their share of the bill in this Tracy selves £28,000 not being able to meet me pain Queen’s Mary could be forced to sell back blood pressure sky-high as you can actually she can’t understand really how can you get a bill for that much money without some warning he decided to fight back along with fellow leaseholder Judy Granville they challenge the council legal team at the leasehold valuation tribunal Leicester City I’ve dealt with these things before an exam I didn’t know whether we were I would love to take you legal advice 6 Leaseholders found something seriously wrong with the council’s assessment what they’re done it survey the worst of blocks on the estate and they based their decision to replace all of the rooms and all of the windows on that building we don’t even inspecting the roof that can u111100 £12 on replacing is the tribunal reduce this to just £25,000 9543 Windows was cut to just 10 grand in total spend on your status it just didn’t stills in you totally cynicism the roof didn’t have to be replaced the windows and have been replaced asbestos across the whole estate didn’t have to be replaced.
So why you have to ask why the council so most residents prefer to have asbestos removed and they were following government guidance that should be replaced after 30 years also consulted with Leaseholders before bills were sent Islington Council have had two appeals rejected that are considering another what is Tonto talk to you about do you think the council are aware these sorts of bills are creating is taking place in this flight today about was expecting from that meeting at the level of emotion that we saw from Jackie but I suppose it isn’t surprised she’s mum is elderly she’s a stressed and she doesn’t understand she’s going to cope with a bill for £28,000 from the cat that is one family that will be hoping that the local authority takes asthma probabilities and forced and there is also a culture sing to Battle having to procure and services on that leads to like a Tremlett Grove where if there if the roof is deemed to need replacing that say on an adjoining block or I’ll block the other side of an estate let’s get all of the rooms done all at once the problem is is the roofs and all the other blogs might not be a problem at all the dispatches has also discovered another problem some councils have profit share deals with contractors this is how it works firms that hire to maintain and repair local authority property.
Once the contractors profit at a certain point the council receives a share of what is made there after sometimes up to 50% systems paint if you are being charged 100% of The Bill your landlords a profit share agreement is essentially only being charged sent then those charges are not legitimate and we would be very happy challenging them in the advert recent freedom of information request to every 10 confirm I’ve had profit share agreement with contractors to provide repairs or services to lease or properties directly reimbursed Elisa some said money would be used for future repairs financial disputes with local authority freeholders could affect some of the 2 million people who have taken up the right to buy their council house these are the people who can least afford it with the Financial Services Authority saying warning 22 or already facing repossession Stella Burns and her husband Robert have lived on Monmouth house estate in Cwmbran which local community because we go line dancing three times a week shops as you can see in 2003 they bought their flat from the council so we decided that if we bought the flat and at least we would have the flat to leave them 4 years against the council pest control to the Bron afon housing association who are now asking Leaseholders to help pay for roof window replacements.
The amount was £17,352.04 we knew when we took over the lease that we would be liable for repairs I mean yes one or two sweets and I even three £4,000 but not the large sums of money that will be NASCAR Vine look at lease but the family didn’t understand just how big the bills could be particularly really struggling it’s been a nightmare spoke to all the worry about it all Anna loveland owns a bigger flat in Monmouth house so she’s being asked to pay even more charge £26,354 this is talking Monopoly man really do not we do have right not dead just be pushed back by then how are you member legal for help with seems to be a real issue in the other rating is the level of the charges and the fact that in some cases these charges are considerably more than people paid for their flats in the first place even in difficult economic times I think there has to be a suited sensitivity anxiety and stress that’s going to cause people Bron afon housing association told us they have carried out lengthy consultations with the Leaseholders will be sharing the costs they say they recognise the financial difficulties of some and of offered range of payment options we had opted to pay for the £50 a month but I have been told that I can’t even with that the pressure of having to pay large bills.
The bills is clearly having a profound effect on people like their land and along with all the other Leaseholders housing minister what do you say to those council’s overcharged on major works bills to the tune of £1000000 absolutely these councils are public bodies who have an absolute duty to all of their residents and ask for them to be overcharging that is absolutely shameful and I’m very very happy to be a part of naming shaming embarrassing and ultimately I’m change their ways we’ve discovered that some local authorities have a profit share arrangement but as far as we can work out that money is not return to the Leaseholders unforgivable sweetheart deals and particular very strong local authority the interest that end automatically understand the police guidance that’s confusion that we can help with man the time for further regulation is nervous people doing is trying to introduce the law to deal with a tiny tiny tiny minority at the same time introducing new cost for the vast majority let’s not forget that tiny tiny minority Leaseholders BBC on the side of Leaseholders I go further and say to you know those who want to rip Leaseholders off you are a watch.
I am looking at what’s happening very very carefully yourself if you’re thinking about buying leasehold to SIM find out exactly what you’re signing up to and how much you may be expected to pay if you already own leasehold and you think your bills are just too big then you can visit website https://www.fca.org.uk/about/the-fca to find out what you can do about it