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Leaseholder Information

Calling an AGM

An AGM is simply a General Meeting of members that is held annually. If the Articles of Association do not state that an AGM must be held then the meeting can be called by The Directors – giving 14 clear days’ notice or any longer period stated in the Articles (s307) or one or more Members – A member who has more than 5% of the voting rights may ask the directors to call a general meeting.

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Amending the Articles of Association

The Articles of Association are the “rules” that govern how a company is run. New companies are often formed with standard Articles of Association for limited companies. The Articles cover constitutional matters and should be applied in conjunction with the provisions of the Companies Act 2006.

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Collective Enfranchisement

Collective Enfranchisement was created by the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993. It is the legal right for leaseholders to compel the Freeholder to sell them the freehold. Leasehold Enfranchisement is the right to extend long residential leases.

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Service Charge Notices

Service Charge Notices for payment must be accompanied by a summary of the leaseholder’s rights and obligations as set out in “The Service Charges (Summary of Rights and Obligations, and Transitional Provision) (England) Regulations 2007”

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Section 22: Right to Inspect Accounts

Leaseholders have the right under section 22 of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1985 to inspect documents relating to their service charges within a period of six months from receipt of the summary, the service charge payer (or the secretary of a recognised tenants’ association) may write to the landlord requiring him to allow access to and inspection of the accounts, receipts and any other documents relevant to the service charge information in the summary and to provide facilities for them to be copied.

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Right to Insurance Information

The responsibility for insuring a residential block is dependant on the terms of the lease. A leaseholder is therefore recommended to consult the lease. Often the responsibility falls to the Freeholder, or the Residents Management Company may be obliged to insure with an insurer nominated by the Freeholder. The cost of the insurance is then apportioned and passed onto leaseholders as part of the Service Charge.

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Tax Guide for Landlords

Originally written in 2000, the following is a brief guide to tax on lettings, what records you need to keep, and how to make a simple annual return of your net letting income to HMRC. It does not however attempt to cover the wider aspects of personal taxation. If you are unsure about any aspect of your tax liability, you are advised to seek  advice from your accountant or other financial advisor.

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Legionnaires’ Disease

Legionella are bacteria that can thrive in warm water between 20C and 40C that has remained at that temperature for a period of time. It is spread in fine water spray from showers or taps.  It is however, unlikely to occur in a normal residential environment.

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Smoke & Carbon Monoxide Detectors

Landlords are required by law to install working smoke and carbon monoxide alarms in their properties from 1 October 2015. The law requires landlords to install smoke alarms on every floor of their property, and test them at the start of every tenancy.

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Fire Safety

Fire safety design in new blocks of flats is governed by the Building Regulations 2010. Once a block is occupied, guidance is provided by the Local Government Association guide: Fire safety in purpose-built blocks of flats.

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Noise Issues

Noise from neighbours is a common source of disturbance. The most frequent complaints are about barking dogs, loud music or TV, shouting, banging doors and DIY. Remember that no house or flat is totally soundproof, and gardens and garages can be particularly noisy! Everyone can expect some noise from the people who live around them.

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External Links

There are a number of excellent sources of leaseholder information.

Leaseholder information links:

This advisory book details the rights and responsibilities which currently apply to long leaseholders in England.

Association of Retirement Housing Managers Note on Disability Discrimination
HM Office for Disability Issues Good Practice FactSheet 2

RICS Service Charge Residential Management Code
ICAEW Service Charges Technical Release
ICAS Service Charges Technical Release

The Leasehold Advisory Service Guide to Right To Manage
Right To Manage regulations 2010