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  • FIRST POST
    • varghesejim
    • By varghesejim 30th Jun 18, 10:01 AM
    • 150Posts
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    varghesejim
    Move to allow parking only for owner occupiers in a flat block
    • #1
    • 30th Jun 18, 10:01 AM
    Move to allow parking only for owner occupiers in a flat block 30th Jun 18 at 10:01 AM
    Hello,

    I own a flat in a block of flats. All flat owners are equal shareholders of the blaock(via a residents association). The flat is rented out.

    Today I received a voting form to vote to allow only owner occupiers to park in the communal parking within the premises.

    I think it is very unfair on the people who are renting in the block. This makes the community two tier where the owner occupiers have certain extra rights in the communal area compared to the renters.

    Several questions I have

    1)Legally is it valid for a residents association to vote to restrict communal area to favour owner occupiers?

    2)What exactly are the legal powers of a residents association which owns the freehold when it comes to rights of the residents in a flat block? It is not right by voting the residents can take away the rights of certain people in the block?

    I think most of the occupiers in the block are owners. If by voting among shareholders owner-occupiers can take away some of the renters rights, it will lead to more restrictions I am afraid

    By the way I don't think practically the renters will have any issues as the road next to the block have enough free parking(which most of the residents use anyway). It is the principle it is bugging me
Page 1
    • Umkomaas
    • By Umkomaas 30th Jun 18, 10:07 AM
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    Umkomaas
    • #2
    • 30th Jun 18, 10:07 AM
    • #2
    • 30th Jun 18, 10:07 AM
    Your questions are probably best addressed by a solicitor as they are of a legal nature and might have a fundamental impact on how you deal with this.
    Last edited by Umkomaas; 30-06-2018 at 10:14 AM.
    We cannot provide you with a silver bullet to get you out of this. You have to be in for the long run, and need to involve yourself in research and work for you to get rid of this. It is not simple. We will help, but can't do it for you.

    Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day; show him how to catch fish, and you feed him for a lifetime.
    • Half_way
    • By Half_way 30th Jun 18, 10:21 AM
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    Half_way
    • #3
    • 30th Jun 18, 10:21 AM
    • #3
    • 30th Jun 18, 10:21 AM
    To start with you should check your lease/freehold etc, does the property have a designated space in the car park, or is it truly communal, on a first come first get basis?


    Secondly, how are they looking at enforcing a restriction? at a guess someone on the resident association may have been tempted by a private parking company, possibly offering a so called simple self ticketing operation which could offer a bonus payment for each ticket issued by the local busybody.
    If this is the case then it should be resisted.


    the Yes/No question does not answer the biggest question of How will they will do it? what's the residents association proposing to do?
    its important that you find that bit of information out
    From the Plain Language Commission:

    "The BPA has surely become one of the most socially dangerous organisations in the UK"
    • NeilCr
    • By NeilCr 30th Jun 18, 10:27 AM
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    NeilCr
    • #4
    • 30th Jun 18, 10:27 AM
    • #4
    • 30th Jun 18, 10:27 AM
    I don't normally do this but there is a similar thread running on the housing forum here

    https://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5862209

    which contains more information.

    It was suggested to the OP that he posted here, too.
    • varghesejim
    • By varghesejim 30th Jun 18, 10:46 AM
    • 150 Posts
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    varghesejim
    • #5
    • 30th Jun 18, 10:46 AM
    • #5
    • 30th Jun 18, 10:46 AM
    To start with you should check your lease/freehold etc, does the property have a designated space in the car park, or is it truly communal, on a first come first get basis?


    Secondly, how are they looking at enforcing a restriction? at a guess someone on resident association may have been tempted by a private parking company, possibly offering a so called simple self ticketing operation which could offer a bonus payment for each ticket issued by the local busybody.
    If this is the case then it should be resisted.


    the Yes/No question does not answer the biggest question of How will they will do it? what's the residents association proposing to do?
    its important that you find that bit of information out
    Originally posted by Half_way
    No designated space in the lease. It is first come first serve

    I don't know how they are going to do this. I received an email asking to vote as below

    Exclusive parking for owner occupiers yes/ no
    • Half_way
    • By Half_way 30th Jun 18, 1:26 PM
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    Half_way
    • #6
    • 30th Jun 18, 1:26 PM
    • #6
    • 30th Jun 18, 1:26 PM
    do you have any representation on whatever committee is discussing this?
    who put the proposal forward for a vote?
    you should be able to ask for a copy of the minutes from the meeting.
    As you appear to have very little information, my instinct would be so let the status quo stand, until details on how such a scheme would work.
    Also add its a communal area there could be issues in restricting is use to certain residents, who may have a pre existing right to use its as is
    From the Plain Language Commission:

    "The BPA has surely become one of the most socially dangerous organisations in the UK"
    • IamEmanresu
    • By IamEmanresu 1st Jul 18, 7:10 AM
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    IamEmanresu
    • #7
    • 1st Jul 18, 7:10 AM
    • #7
    • 1st Jul 18, 7:10 AM
    Are 75% of the leaseholders likely to agree?

    See https://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/1987/31/part/IV

    37 Application by majority of parties for variation of leases.
    (1)Subject to the following provisions of this section, an application may be made to [F11the appropriate tribunal] in respect of two or more leases for an order varying each of those leases in such manner as is specified in the application.
    (2)Those leases must be long leases of flats under which the landlord is the same person, but they need not be leases of flats which are in the same building, nor leases which are drafted in identical terms.
    (3)The grounds on which an application may be made under this section are that the object to be achieved by the variation cannot be satisfactorily achieved unless all the leases are varied to the same effect.
    (4)An application under this section in respect of any leases may be made by the landlord or any of the tenants under the leases.
    (5)Any such application shall only be made if!!!8212;
    (a)in a case where the application is in respect of less than nine leases, all, or all but one, of the parties concerned consent to it; or
    (b)in a case where the application is in respect of more than eight leases, it is not opposed for any reason by more than 10 per cent. of the total number of the parties concerned and at least 75 per cent. of that number consent to it.
    (6)For the purposes of subsection (5)!!!8212;
    (a)in the case of each lease in respect of which the application is made, the tenant under the lease shall constitute one of the parties concerned (so that in determining the total number of the parties concerned a person who is the tenant under a number of such leases shall be regarded as constituting a corresponding number of the parties concerned); and
    (b)the landlord shall also constitute one of the parties concerned.
    Any variation AFAIR would have to be registered at the LR. But you could also take the Residents Association to the First Tier (cost about 300) and let them determine whether what they will do is lawful.

    As an aside, very few people know about the FTT's (the step below court / above mediation) but they are very useful for getting to the root of issues. There are employment ones, one for benefits and even information rights. You don't always have to go full tilt to court.
    Last edited by IamEmanresu; 01-07-2018 at 7:25 AM.
    About me: Capricorn. Likes: Tight defences, the tighter the better. Lucidity. Dislikes: Loquaciousness and magic words. WLTM: Someone with the facts, a private income and their own copy of the White Book.
    • The Deep
    • By The Deep 1st Jul 18, 10:39 AM
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    The Deep
    • #8
    • 1st Jul 18, 10:39 AM
    • #8
    • 1st Jul 18, 10:39 AM
    Would this not affect rental values?
    You never know how far you can go until you go too far.
    • NeilCr
    • By NeilCr 1st Jul 18, 10:48 AM
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    NeilCr
    • #9
    • 1st Jul 18, 10:48 AM
    • #9
    • 1st Jul 18, 10:48 AM
    Would this not affect rental values?
    Originally posted by The Deep
    I wondered that too

    Looking at the other thread, though, it seems like there is a lot of free parking on the road outside and quite a few residents use that already.

    This may not be much of an issue parking wise. Ian's right. My bigger concern, as expressed in the other thread, is that a few owners (as directors) are trying to push through changes that suit them - taking advantage of disinterest by other owners in the day to day running of the development.
    • IamEmanresu
    • By IamEmanresu 1st Jul 18, 11:53 AM
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    IamEmanresu
    Would this not affect rental values?
    If it did, there would be action for damages such as this case

    http://www.bournemouthecho.co.uk/news/districts/bournemouth/9960349.Resident_wins_High_Court_fight_over__free_ for_all__parking_scheme/

    taking advantage of disinterest by other owners in the day to day running of the development.
    It goes further than that IMHO as some parking companies might actually be able to establish property rights (part of any sale value) if they are there long enough. People wouldn't be disinterested if they realised that by not protecting their interests they are giving away money.
    Last edited by IamEmanresu; 01-07-2018 at 11:56 AM.
    About me: Capricorn. Likes: Tight defences, the tighter the better. Lucidity. Dislikes: Loquaciousness and magic words. WLTM: Someone with the facts, a private income and their own copy of the White Book.
    • Coupon-mad
    • By Coupon-mad 1st Jul 18, 2:14 PM
    • 59,444 Posts
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    Coupon-mad
    I would respond absolutely objecting, and pointing out that as a resident, you have already allowed your tenants to enjoy the same parking and other rights and easements as you enjoy as leaseholder.

    Therefore (you can say) the Residents Association cannot remove this retrospectively and you intend to take them to a tribunal if they try, or if they impose other restrictions or charges that have a detrimental effect or nuisance for you and/or your tenants, and might lead to a case for damages if the rental value falls as a result.

    Put a copy of that reply also, with an explanatory alarmed note, in the doors of all 24 flats with your phone number or email address and ask others to get in touch if they are concerned about this apparent attempt to vary the leases/erode the rights of residents and derogate from grant, which is unlawful. Not only that, such a regime would mean allowing an ex-clamper thug firm on site, and they are notorious for charging and suing residents; so bad is the problem for residents in such locations that it has been discussed in Parliament this year:

    https://parliamentlive.tv/event/index/2f0384f2-eba5-4fff-ab07-cf24b6a22918?in=12:49:41

    Stir up a storm.

    Slightly different but that's what I have done, twice, in my local roads to stop sheep-like people voting for a Council permit scheme that was painted as if it was a good thing. Voted out twice, and people agreed with me once they saw the real issues that the Council was not admitting would happen. All 'driveway' white H bar (parking allowed by the homeowner) lines would have been removed and replaced with double yellows, and the Council neglected to admit it. I told the local residents what would really happen and how the parking would be reduced and they'd pay for it in more ways than one.

    People will follow blindly, if they are not told the disadvantages. And being told to display a permit or be sued, is not something any of them should be voting for. Add in IamEmanresu's observation, for good measure:

    It goes further than that IMHO as some parking companies might actually be able to establish property rights (part of any sale value) if they are there long enough. People wouldn't be disinterested if they realised that by not protecting their interests they are giving away money.
    Frighten the locals and they will NOT agree to this.
    Last edited by Coupon-mad; 01-07-2018 at 2:17 PM.
    PRIVATE PCN? DON'T PAY BUT DO NOT IGNORE IT TWO Clicks needed for advice:
    Top of the page: Home>>Forums>Household & Travel>Motoring>Parking Tickets, Fines & Parking - read the 'NEWBIES' FAQS thread!
    Advice to ignore is WRONG, unless in Scotland/NI.

    • Half_way
    • By Half_way 1st Jul 18, 2:56 PM
    • 4,183 Posts
    • 5,948 Thanks
    Half_way
    Do as Coupon mad mentions above, its important that all flats that could be affected by this are notified
    From the Plain Language Commission:

    "The BPA has surely become one of the most socially dangerous organisations in the UK"
    • varghesejim
    • By varghesejim 5th Jul 18, 7:13 AM
    • 150 Posts
    • 52 Thanks
    varghesejim
    I would respond absolutely objecting, and pointing out that as a resident, you have already allowed your tenants to enjoy the same parking and other rights and easements as you enjoy as leaseholder.

    Therefore (you can say) the Residents Association cannot remove this retrospectively and you intend to take them to a tribunal if they try, or if they impose other restrictions or charges that have a detrimental effect or nuisance for you and/or your tenants, and might lead to a case for damages if the rental value falls as a result.

    Put a copy of that reply also, with an explanatory alarmed note, in the doors of all 24 flats with your phone number or email address and ask others to get in touch if they are concerned about this apparent attempt to vary the leases/erode the rights of residents and derogate from grant, which is unlawful. Not only that, such a regime would mean allowing an ex-clamper thug firm on site, and they are notorious for charging and suing residents; so bad is the problem for residents in such locations that it has been discussed in Parliament this year:

    https://parliamentlive.tv/event/index/2f0384f2-eba5-4fff-ab07-cf24b6a22918?in=12:49:41

    Stir up a storm.

    Slightly different but that's what I have done, twice, in my local roads to stop sheep-like people voting for a Council permit scheme that was painted as if it was a good thing. Voted out twice, and people agreed with me once they saw the real issues that the Council was not admitting would happen. All 'driveway' white H bar (parking allowed by the homeowner) lines would have been removed and replaced with double yellows, and the Council neglected to admit it. I told the local residents what would really happen and how the parking would be reduced and they'd pay for it in more ways than one.

    People will follow blindly, if they are not told the disadvantages. And being told to display a permit or be sued, is not something any of them should be voting for. Add in IamEmanresu's observation, for good measure:

    Frighten the locals and they will NOT agree to this.
    Originally posted by Coupon-mad

    Draft letter

    To

    The Directors,
    ...Association

    Re: move to change parking arrangements in ....


    Dear Sir/Madam,

    I am the owner of .......which is currently rented out. I understand there is a voting happening on the subject of allowing only owner occupiers to park within the premises of ...... I strongly object to this idea.

    As a resident, I have already allowed my tenants to enjoy the same parking and other rights and easements as I enjoy as leaseholder.

    Therefore the Residents Association cannot remove this retrospectively and I intend to take them to a tribunal if they try, or if they impose other restrictions or charges that have a detrimental effect or nuisance for me and my tenants, and might lead to a case for damages if the rental value falls as a result.

    I would also like to point out that attempt to enforce this parking restrictions among residents may lead to rifts between neighbours and in case if it leads to a formal dispute, it has to be declared to the solicitor at the time of sale of any flat in floral court. There is a strong possibility that this will lead to a fall in property value in floral court.


    Regards

    ....
    • IamEmanresu
    • By IamEmanresu 5th Jul 18, 7:25 AM
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    IamEmanresu
    There is a strong possibility that this will lead to a fall in property value in floral court.
    Like all contractual disputes, it will come down to the wording of the leases. If there is no restriction on the issue of renting and ancillary rights, then this is an attempt to remove a valuable amenity which in the case below was calculated at 5% of the property value. This leads to a basis for action in damages of 5% * number of flats, so worthwhile getting others to join in.

    Gordon v Elizabeth Court (Bournemouth) Ltd [2012] EWHC (QB), [2012] All ER (D) 41 (May)
    3 May 2012
    The claimant had a right under her lease to garage one car in !!!8216;the space!!!8217; provided for that purpose beneath her block of flats. In February 2011, the landlord decided to trial a new parking system whereby spaces were taken on a first-come first-served basis. The claimant sought an injunction preventing the new parking system from being implemented and a declaration that she was entitled to the use of an allocated parking space. The county court dismissed the claim. The High Court allowed an appeal and granted a declaration that the tenant was entitled to the use of an allocated parking space.
    .
    Last edited by IamEmanresu; 05-07-2018 at 7:38 AM.
    About me: Capricorn. Likes: Tight defences, the tighter the better. Lucidity. Dislikes: Loquaciousness and magic words. WLTM: Someone with the facts, a private income and their own copy of the White Book.
    • NeilCr
    • By NeilCr 5th Jul 18, 7:58 AM
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    NeilCr
    I still think, as per the other thread, it is worth trying to find out what authority (as per lease/vote) they think they are using to get this through.

    It would be able to make your challenge more focussed. As we said there, you are a shareholder in the company so are fully entitled to this information - plus minutes of meetings/AGMs.

    In terms of garnering support from others you are hampered by being ((a fair way?) away from the site and that it may well be - as there is plenty of offsite parking which some use already - that many won't be that bothered. Which, I guess, is what they are relying on

    It's worth pointing out that, certainly, on this board - my way of approaching it is different to most. I tend to leave going in heavy until I've got all the facts and the more gentle way has failed!

    Of course, that doesn't mean I am right.
    • Johnersh
    • By Johnersh 5th Jul 18, 8:08 AM
    • 1,102 Posts
    • 2,118 Thanks
    Johnersh
    Does the o/p have legal expenses cover with their home insurance for this property? It's normally a bolt-on for a small additional premium.

    If so, there may be cover for professional legal advice on the property issues and prospective cover if litigation is required.
    "The best advice I ever got was that knowledge is power and to keep reading."
    DISCLAIMER: I post thoughts as & when they occur. I don't advise. You are your own person and decision-maker. I'm unlikely to respond to DMs seeking personal advice. It's ill-advised & you lose the benefit of a group "take" on events.
    • IamEmanresu
    • By IamEmanresu 5th Jul 18, 8:09 AM
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    IamEmanresu
    I tend to leave going in heavy until I've got all the facts and the more gentle way has failed!
    @NeilCr. AIUI you will be familiar with Tribunals - either employment or benefits - which I assume you wouldn't tell a client that a Tribunal was "heavy".

    As regards facts, everyone has them in the form of a lease.

    The OP could spend a lot of time and money in an exchange of lawyer letters but the clear arbiter in these cases is the Tribunal as that is where the property experts are - as recognised by the courts themselves.

    In the same way as employment/benefits claimants routinely use Tribunals, leaseholders do and should use the FTT
    About me: Capricorn. Likes: Tight defences, the tighter the better. Lucidity. Dislikes: Loquaciousness and magic words. WLTM: Someone with the facts, a private income and their own copy of the White Book.
    • NeilCr
    • By NeilCr 5th Jul 18, 8:17 AM
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    NeilCr
    @NeilCr. AIUI you will be familiar with Tribunals - either employment or benefits - which I assume you wouldn't tell a client that a Tribunal was "heavy".

    As regards facts, everyone has them in the form of a lease.

    The OP could spend a lot of time and money in an exchange of lawyer letters but the clear arbiter in these cases is the Tribunal as that is where the property experts are - as recognised by the courts themselves.

    In the same way as employment/benefits claimants routinely use Tribunals, leaseholders do and should use the FTT
    Originally posted by IamEmanresu
    Indeed, I am

    In the other thread, as I said, it was suggested that the OP tried to find out why they were acting as they were and what authority they were using. Nothing more than that. OP, by their own admission, has had no involvement or interest in the running of the estate up until now and there does seem to be a bit of a lack of information. Note - I am not blaming him for that!

    My point was not that taking someone to Tribunal is heavy. I know it's not. It's threatening to do it, without knowing the full facts, that is, in IMHO, the heavy bit.

    ETA

    There is a bit more info in the other thread where the OP said a week ago he was going to be contacting the agent for more information on what authority was being used. I don't know if this was actually done.
    Last edited by NeilCr; 05-07-2018 at 9:38 AM.
    • Loadsofchildren123
    • By Loadsofchildren123 5th Jul 18, 11:31 AM
    • 2,216 Posts
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    Loadsofchildren123
    Yes, I'd ask them to explain what authority they are relying on as allowing them to introduce parking regulations which favour one set of owners over others.


    Also put in that if they introduce these parking regulations they are breaching your right to Peaceful Enjoyment (look at your leasehold, it may say Quiet Enjoyment), and the right of Peaceful Enjoyment you have passed on to your tenant, and they have no right to do so.


    I'd also be inclined to put a paragraph in about how residential parking controls is a very thorny subject because private parking companies are notorious for targeting genuine residents and not rogue parkers, so much so that it has recently been debated in Parliament in the context of proposed legislation to control the behaviour of the private parking companies. Then include the Deeps' link.
    Although a practising Solicitor, my posts here are NOT legal advice, but are personal opinion based on limited facts provided anonymously by forum users. I accept no liability for the accuracy of any such posts and users are advised that, if they wish to obtain formal legal advice specific to their case, they must seek instruct and pay a solicitor.
    • NeilCr
    • By NeilCr 5th Jul 18, 4:13 PM
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    • 2,593 Thanks
    NeilCr
    Yes, I'd ask them to explain what authority they are relying on as allowing them to introduce parking regulations which favour one set of owners over others.


    Also put in that if they introduce these parking regulations they are breaching your right to Peaceful Enjoyment (look at your leasehold, it may say Quiet Enjoyment), and the right of Peaceful Enjoyment you have passed on to your tenant, and they have no right to do so.


    I'd also be inclined to put a paragraph in about how residential parking controls is a very thorny subject because private parking companies are notorious for targeting genuine residents and not rogue parkers, so much so that it has recently been debated in Parliament in the context of proposed legislation to control the behaviour of the private parking companies. Then include the Deeps' link.
    Originally posted by Loadsofchildren123
    Thank you Loads of Children

    That makes Loads of Sense

    OP. I would go down this line
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