My Bron Afon

Leaseholder Tribunal- testing our process

In 2020 a group of our leaseholders decided to apply to The Residential Property Tribunal (Wales) / Leasehold Valuation Tribunal, as they did not believe the work we carried out to maintain the blocks was necessary. The work included the replacement of the roof systems on the blocks and to replace part of the external covering of the blocks. We understand leaseholders have this option, as we have been through this process in the past and we have learned from those experiences. For example, we put new and improve internal processes in place to safeguard our organisation and leaseholders in all future major work programmes.

Our new process to check each stage

To start the process of carrying out this piece of work that leaseholder appealed about a number of steps were carried out, some of which were formal legislative requirements. This is the new process we follow and shows the steps and checks at each stage.

Firstly the blocks were surveyed by our technical staff and also by independent specialist providers. The surveys, historical repairs and age of components were then used to develop the programme of work that was required. The programme then entered our internal quality assurance process, which takes the form of the Leasehold Review Panel. The Panel looked at the information provided for the programme and took a view on the following:

  • requirement of the work.
  • if each element of the work it is believed to be a repair or an improvement.
  • if it is reasonable to charge leaseholders for each of the elements.
  • to check the legislative leaseholder consultation has been carried out.

After all these decisions are made the Panel allowed the next stage of the process to proceed. The Panel met at four different stages of the programme:

  • After the programme was put together (pre leaseholder consultation)
  • After the first consultation period (30 days after 1st notice issued (Notice of Intension))
  • After the second consultation period (30 days after 2nd notice issued (Notice of Intension))
  • After the programme was complete, final programme account agreed and before the leaseholder demands are issued

Testing our process at the tribunal

The tribunal was a good test of our processes as they looked at compliance with the legislative Section 20 consultation requirements, the evidence all the work carried out was required in line with our responsibilities as the building landlord and the leaseholders were charged in accordance with their leases.

The tribunal consisted of Dr Christopher McNall (Lawyer – Chairperson), Mr Roger Baynham RICS (Surveyor Member) and Mrs Carole Calvin-Thomas (Lay Member). The tribunal unanimously decided to dismiss the application made by the leaseholders and allow us to lawfully recover the sums that have been claimed from the leaseholders.

Fairness, consistency and reasonableness

It is hoped by sharing this case that all our leaseholder will understand that we do comply with our requirements and we also have a process in place that safeguards leaseholders, to ensure they are all treated with fairness, consistency and reasonableness.

If you’re leaseholder and you wants to know more about the Section 20 consultation process or our Leasehold Review Panel, please email our Leasehold Management Team on leasehold@bronafon.org.uk