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Andrew Howard - Partner, Coles Miller


by on 19th Apr 2012


Andrew HowardA recent report on BBC South Today has highlighted the issue of unsatisfactory management of blocks of flats by freeholders in the local area. Residents of blocks are often unhappy with the level of service charges payable or the way in which their block is managed by their freeholder.

Fortunately, residents do not have to suffer these situations as the Commonhold & Leasehold Reform Act 2002 gives residents of blocks of flats the right to take the management function away from their freeholder and undertake management themselves. In order to undertake this process at least 50% of the total number of flat owners in the block must wish to proceed.

Once the residents have acquired the right to manage they are free to appoint their own preferred managing agent if they wish or can manage the property themselves. This therefore allows residents to make their own decisions such as who provides services to the block and which insurance policy they take out. This often results in a reduction in the amount of service charges they pay at the block as they are likely to be more conscious as to the prices paid for such services.

Coles Miller Solicitors in Durley Chine Road, Bournemouth have their own dedicated department headed by Partner, Andrew Howard specialising in leasehold property matters and are experienced in undertaking the right to manage process on behalf of residents. Andrew Howard commented "The jewel in the crown for leaseholders is compulsorily purchasing the freehold of their block under the Leasehold Reform, Housing & Urban Development Act 1993. Some blocks, however, may not have the financial provision to purchase the freehold and instead undertake the right to manage process under the 2002 Act as there is no premium payable to the freeholder. Under the right to manage scheme the freeholder retains his reversionary interest in the block but hands over management to the participating residents. It is a valuable procedure for residents who are not satisfied with their freeholder's management of the block or consider their service charge payments too high."

Andrew and his team would invite anyone interested in obtaining the right to manage of their block to contact them on 01202 293226 and they will be happy to assist and discuss the procedure further.

This document is not intended to constitute and should not be used as a substitute for legal advice on any specific matter. No liability for the accuracy of the content of this document, or the consequences of relying on it, is assumed by the author. If you seek further information, please contact Managing Partner Neil Andrews at Coles Miller Solicitors LLP.