Three of a kind beats two of a pair

Arnold v Britton [2012] EWHC 2451(Ch) is the third holiday chalet / service charge case we’ve covered in short order (the other two are here and here). Coincidence or evidence of a growth area of work I wonder?

Anyway, back to the case. The issue was whether or not the lease provided for the payment of a service charge as defined by s.18, Landlord and Tenant Act 1985, that is to say, a charge which, inter alia, “varies or may vary according to the relevant costs”.

There were five forms of lease with five forms of clause.

Version 1: “To pay to the Lessors without any deductions in … Read the full post

I’m not talking to you

Following on from the news that LEASE (the Leasehold Advisory Service – a quango) had not been granted funding to continue to advise the public on commonhold issues (see our note, here), comes the news that it is to stop offering mediation services in service charge disputes (again, one presumes, for lack of funding). The announcement is here.

Not entirely surprising. Sad though it is to say this, I suspect that the writing is on the wall for LEASE in general. The approach of the Tory-led government to quangos is, in general terms, to abolish them where they perform a service that the private sector could perform. Advise … Read the full post

Alas poor Commonhold…

Commonhold was introduced by the Commonhold and Leasehold Reform Act 2002 and, in essence, is a new way (i.e. not freehold or leasehold) for flat owners to collectively hold the building containing their flats. It’s not proved very popular, with only c.20 developments across England and Wales. By s.62, CLRA 2002, the government is empowered to give financial support to people or organisations with a view to promoting commonhold. In practice, it has done this by funding LEASE (leasehold advisory service).

That funding has just been stopped.… Read the full post

Co-ops, equity and void leases

Berrisford v Mexfield Housing Co-Operative Ltd [2010] EWCA Civ 811

We reported on the High Court appeal in this case here. By the time it reached the Court of Appeal it had turned into quite a different case altogether. At the High Court, Ms Berrisford was unrepresented and summary judgment was given against her on Mexfield’s possession claim, on the basis that, as a tenant of a fully mutual housing co-op, her tenancy was outside Housing Act 1988 and was terminable on notice to quit. At first instance, Mexfield had been refused summary judgment on the basis that Ms B’s tenancy agreement said that possession proceedings would only be … Read the full post