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Backdated Ground Rent

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in House Buying, Renting & Selling
54 replies 26.4K views
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  • My ground rent is £2.50p.a., I paid £30 in 1997,this was to buy out any future rent I was told.I have heard nothing for 13 years and now I have just received a bill for £668 from Morgoed Estates, this is for ground rent backdated to 2002.The amount is that much because of costs they told me.
    What can I do next. any suggestions?
  • binbagsbinbags Forumite
    2 posts
    Hi All

    I like you have been contacted by the above company a few days ago, asking for the ground rent for 2011. A sum of £1.00.

    Back in late 2009 we sent them a cheque for £20.00. This was to pay for the 2 years before 2009 and the next 18 years. But yet again they have sent an invoice demand for £1.00 for this year, when we should have been paid up until 2027.

    I have sent then copies of the returned official stamped letter that we sent to them in 2009, showing that we have sent them a cheque for £20.00.

    I have have sent a couple emails in the last few days asking them to please explain themselves and respond to my emails, the first email contained copies of the posting and the returned stamped letter. All to no avail.

    Do you have any further advise for us??

    Maybe Morgoed Estates would like to explain themselves on this web site, as they appear to be a contributor.
  • NagapriyaNagapriya Forumite
    6 posts
    Dear MSE

    I have just received a demand from Morgoed Estates for ground rent of £10.50 plus and admin charge of £100.00 for the cost of them sending me a letter to claim payment. I have previously never heard of Morgoed Estates or had any request for ground rent.

    Upon further inquiry, I have discovered that they are claiming 7 years back groundrent (although they don't state this in their letter). My question is: do I have to pay them all the back groundrent even if I have only owned my property for 1 year (the annual ground rent is £1.50). In addition, am I obliged to pay the £100 additional fee? The company is threatening to take legal action against me, which, they say, could include taking possession of my house if I don't pay them.

    Anyone offer any help on this?
    Thanks
    Nagapriya
  • Nagapriya wrote: »
    Dear MSE

    I have just received a demand from Morgoed Estates for ground rent of £10.50 plus and admin charge of £100.00 for the cost of them sending me a letter to claim payment. I have previously never heard of Morgoed Estates or had any request for ground rent.

    Upon further inquiry, I have discovered that they are claiming 7 years back groundrent (although they don't state this in their letter). My question is: do I have to pay them all the back groundrent even if I have only owned my property for 1 year (the annual ground rent is £1.50). In addition, am I obliged to pay the £100 additional fee? The company is threatening to take legal action against me, which, they say, could include taking possession of my house if I don't pay them.

    Anyone offer any help on this?
    Thanks
    Nagapriya

    Check the terms and conditions of your lease. If there is no provision for administration charges for Ground Rent (ours for example has none) then they cannot charge you the £100 fee. End of story. If it does allow admin charges then they have to be reasonable. I think they would struggle to prove £100 to send a letter is reasonable.

    As I say, check the terms and conditions of your lease and also read Section 166 of the Commonhold and Leasehold Reform Act 2002. Or go to lease-advise.org.

    I'm sure someone will also recommend that you check they are actually the landlord as well.

    Don't worry too much about the legal action stuff, the vast majority of the time it's just fluff. It's rare that they are actually in a position to do this.
  • edited 6 May 2011 at 4:18PM
    CANNYMAZCANNYMAZ Forumite
    1 posts
    edited 6 May 2011 at 4:18PM
    Hi, I have also received a demand for payment of ground rent for £11.74 + £100 costs from morgoed estates. Having had no previous contact from this company I decided to send the ground rent of £11.74 to them but not the £100 costs. (By the way they only accept payment by cheque & postal order no paying by card over the phone)
    As I no longer have a cheque book I had to purchase postal orders. This morning a recieved a copy of a letter from the company that holds my deeds in there deedsafe to say that morgoed estates had tried to put a charge on the mortgage for the full amount of £111.74, they couldn't do that because there is no mortgage. I phoned morgoes estates today who say they will be returning my postal order as it wasn't for the full amount and that they will be going to the next level for payment which according t there letter is repossesion of the house. They suggested I contact a solicitor. I only work part-time and my husband hasn't any work at the moment as he is self employed. I am really scared as my home is the only thing I own of any value. i can't afford a solicitor and don't no where to go from here. I sure when the next letter comes it will include more costs and really don't no where I will get the money from. Can any one offer any advice as to where to go from here.
  • CANNYMAZ wrote: »
    Hi, I have also received a demand for payment of ground rent for £11.74 + £100 costs from morgoed estates. Having had no previous contact from this company I decided to send the ground rent of £11.74 to them but not the £100 costs. (By the way they only accept payment by cheque & postal order no paying by card over the phone)
    As I no longer have a cheque book I had to purchase postal orders. This morning a recieved a copy of a letter from the company that holds my deeds in there deedsafe to say that morgoed estates had tried to put a charge on the mortgage for the full amount of £111.74, they couldn't do that because there is no mortgage. I phoned morgoes estates today who say they will be returning my postal order as it wasn't for the full amount and that they will be going to the next level for payment which according t there letter is repossesion of the house. They suggested I contact a solicitor. I only work part-time and my husband hasn't any work at the moment as he is self employed. I am really scared as my home is the only thing I own of any value. i can't afford a solicitor and don't no where to go from here. I sure when the next letter comes it will include more costs and really don't no where I will get the money from. Can any one offer any advice as to where to go from here.

    If you've not had any previous dealings with this company why are you sending them any money at all? Have they informed you that they have purchased the freehold for your building? Who have you been paying ground rent to previously?

    Also, if you have had no official demands for ground rent (as per the commonhold and leasehold reform act 2002) then you are not liable to pay. Check that you've not had this.

    The charges are unlikely to be enforcable so don't get too wound up about them, and repossession is so far down the chain at the moment it's not even a small dot on the horizon.

    Your mortgage company cannot put any additional amounts onto your mortgage without your consent. A lot of DCA's will try to get you to sign a document to say you allow it but without it, it will not happen. Contact your mortgage company and tell them you don't authorise this.

    DCA's work on fear and lies. They will literally tell you anything to get you to pay up. And more often than not, it's money that you have no obligation to pay anyway. You don't need a solicitor at this point but I would advise that you talk to the leasehold advisory service on 020 7383 9800. They will be able to advise you further.

    Oh and don't bother phoning them! It's a complete waste of time. Only deal with them in writing and only after you've spoken to the LAS.
  • peter_m14peter_m14 Forumite
    12 posts
    If you have a rentcharge or chief rent on a freehold property then you can apply to the National Rentcharges Unit (part of the Department for Communities and Local Government) to have it redeemed under the Rentcharges Act 1977. They can be contacted on [EMAIL="rentcharges@communities.gsi.gov.uk"][email protected][/EMAIL]
  • Hello
    I have been dealing with Morgoed under another name for many years. They were simply JH Roberts & Thain, who are based in Craven Arms, Shropshire. I pay ground rent of £1.48 per year and have always paid on the nail without problems. This year (after sending my demand to the wrong address), they are demanding an extra £10.00 listed as "outstanding charges". This, they say, is a "second demand" as I have overlooked the first application. They have given me notice of intended proceedings and have added the £10.00 which is an administration charge. The letter is intimidating. I have emailed them to ask them to clarify the matter, but they have not replied. I plan to go to Shropshire Consumer Services, but apart from that does anyone have any suggestions?
  • I have had problems with these people for several years.
    They own the freehold of my house, but, there is an intermediate landord between us.
    However, they demand rent from me, but can't/won't confirm/prove that they act for my immediate landlord- so I told them to leave me alone.
    Their response '
    I appreciate your comments about the head and under leases, but I must advise you that an underlessee is not immune to action from a freeholder where there is non-payment of rent. If you would like to say when you last paid the rent under your underlease to the head lessee, we will look at recovery in that direction, but, as I said above, the liability may revert to you in the event of non-payment.'
    So they say, that unless I can prove I'm paying my landlord I must pay them- surely he who asserts a right should prove it?

    Like many here report, they add charges. They want £400 for the lease, i.e. 100 x annual rent, I bet they didn't pay anywhere near that.
    I checked with Companies House and they keep filing dormant accounts - so I sent them evidence of their invoices and pointed them at their website. Morgoed say they aren't trading, so how can they take you to court if they aren't?

    In the early days I did pay to shut them up- how do I stand with demanding my money back?
  • propertymanpropertyman Forumite
    2.9K posts
    Their reply is stating a fact, which they then wrongly, and misleadingly, apply.

    If a freeholder takes action for forfeiture ( end the the lease)they can as a consequence seek forfeiture of your lease or after a court judgement against the head lessee, as for any rent arrears and future rents to be paid directly to them.

    Until those steps are taken they absolutely cannot demand payment from you. In the simplest terms you have a contract ( the lease) with the head lessee to pay rent, no one else.

    They cannot prove a breach of the contract(lease) nor a breach of contract through non payment for a money judgement ,as there is no contractual relation ship between you.

    So I hope you see that their reply suggests an immediate threat but is in fact someway off.

    The only exception is if the lease allows this.

    I would suggest that you reply and set out records for payment for the last 6 years.

    If there are any arrears, then you should state that

    Our/my lease obligates me to pay them £x every Y ( years). However until they issue a demand which
    1:clearly states the name and address of the landlord under section 47 and 48 of the Landlord and Tenant Act and
    2:accompany that with the notice under section 166 of the Commonhold and Leasehold Reform Act 2002

    that you, as freeholders, will know that the rent due from me to the head lessee is not due ( as 2 overrides the terms of the lease which require me to pay to whether formally demanded or not) until the invoice is sent with the above information.

    I am therefore not in breach of my lease and have no contractual or legal obligation to pay rent to you.

    £400 for the freehold is frankly a cheap price, legal advice will cost you more than that! Just dont overlook that the head lease will still be in place, you have to buy that out too.
    Stop! Think. Read the small print. Trust nothing and assume that it is your responsibility. That way it rarely goes wrong.
    Actively hunting down the person who invented the imaginary tenure, "share freehold"; if you can show me one I will produce my daughter's unicorn
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