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Freeholder's rights

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  • Freeholder's rights

    Hi, I'm new to this and I'm new to the whole legality with regards to freeholder's rights and actions so any response and advice will be useful and grately appreciated.
    I own a ground floor flat of a Victorian building but I also own the freehold of the entire building.
    I have been having issues with the tenants and the leasehold owner of the first floor flat on many levels and wanted to know where I stand and what actions I can take as a freehold owner. I have found lots of websites about leaseholder's rights but there aren't many rights for freeholders who are having problems with leaseholders complying with basic needs.
    1) ground rent- he has not paid me ground rent even though it clearly states in the document when and how he has to pay. Can I take him to small claims court to obtain the ground rent?
    2) blocking the communal hallway- we have a shared front entrance and the tenants leave 2 prams in the hallway which means they are blocking the entrance to my flat door and blocking fire exit. It's a health and safety hazard and they are refusing to remove them even though I have asked them numerous times. Can I remove them and dispose of myself or is there a legal route I need to take?
    3) leaseholder not giving his address so whenever I write, I have to leave with his tenants which is not ideal as they are meant to be confidential.
    4) I had a couple of emergencies with pests and leak that were coming from his flat. He refused me access to repair damages. What rights do I have if there were emergencies that need fixing?

    Many Thanks

  • #2
    Re: Freeholder's rights

    As always, you do need to check the exact wording of the lease to be sure but, normally:

    1) Yes. You could also apply to the court to forfeit the lease for non-payment, and include breach of covenant claims for the obstruction and refusal of access. I strongly recommend you speak to a litigation solicitor to ensure you get it all right. The lease will normally include an obligation for the tenant to pay all your legal costs, whether or not the claim actually gets to court and whethger or not it exceeds the small claims limit, so you should not be out of pocket

    2) Yes, but warn the leaseholder (in writing) first

    3) Service at the flat should be good service, but if you want another address (a) check what address for him is on the Land Registry register for the leasehold title and (b) find out from the tenants who collects the rent: it may be an agent, but that gets you one step closer

    4) The lease may give you a right to force entry in emergencies

    I hope this helps
    This is based on my experience as a conveyancing solicitor in England, but I do not accept liability for information I give in this forum