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JoeyJoeC

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  1. Sent detailed timeline of communication as well as in detail my whole complaint, and other issues that have arisen as a result. Requested all the policy documents in #38. Not sent the SAR just yet. They've started taken payments based on the initial incorrect service charges amount, not even the reduced amounts shown on my latest service charges letter. Have been speaking to an action group, who are putting together a dossier regarding service charges from housing associations, they see this case as a strong case, and have gotten the interest of ITV and possibly the BBC. I don't know if at this point it would be a good idea to go as far as an interview on a news segment. Would it be best to wait for the outcome of the complaints process?
  2. Just had a call from Clarion (of which I have recorded of course). It was someone from their complaints team who gather the initial information for a complaint. He said the complaint was put in their system on the 20th April, not the 14th of March which is when I sent the email titled "Official Complaint". The 20th of April was when I received the last "Revised service charges" letter, which to no one's surprise, they can't find a copy of on their system. Tomorrow they will email me and ask me to go into detail about the whole complaint to which I will include a timeline showing how many times they have ignored my emails and calls. It will also give me a chance to query whether or not I should be paying for half of these charges as a tenant (thanks Stu). I will of course ask for the policy documents, and I will send a SAR in as soon as I can.
  3. Sorry, It took me a while taking pictures of every page, uploading to PC, converting to PDF etc. I'll buy a feeder scanner as it will take me awhile.
  4. Just re-read Stu's post, that's absolutely correct, we shouldn't be paying for a great deal of these charges as stated in the Landlords and Tenants act 1985 (section 11). We're certainly not a leaseholder, our tenancy is 5 years at a time. Furthermore, they've left the section in our tenancy agreement about which service charges we need to pay blank. A second document provided to us suggests it's variable however. Attaching the entire service charges letter (the latest one), please let me know if I should scan any other documents that may help with this. REDACTED (01-04-2021) Received 20 April 2021. April 2021 Revised Service Charges.pdf
  5. Thanks, I will look at the post again. The tenants I'm speaking to are housing association tenants just like myself, they have very similar charges to the ones I were getting which they admitted over charging on, there is no way a tenant should be paying £300 a year for communal water alone for example, when every year it has been around £4, and they have admitted to me that the £300 figure was a computer error and have corrected mine back to the lower figure. It's only right they should be correcting everyone's but no one I have spoken to has received a service charges letter other than ourselves. We have a Facebook group with 100's of members so I regularly post about this on that group. The mistakes are because the person who made the changes literally just changed some of the fields in an excel spreadsheet without calculating totals. The other values are the same as the old service charges letter. We don't have any rent free weeks.
  6. I haven't yet. I ended up emailing them so many times, and the only responses I get are "Someone will contact you" which never happens. They're not even sending me supporting evidence of the service charges which is a legal requirement which they've breached. They're not going to send me anything I ask for but doesn't mean I wont try. Thinking the same, but as above, I've been sending them so many emails and calling them, even speaking at the residents meeting in front of councillors and Clarion staff , the CEO's assistant assured me they were looking into the complaint and I would get a response in 10 days time. That will be by the 29th. If I don't hear anything, I will make a sar request, and also contact our MP. I already have SHAC (shaction.org) very interested in this. We get the actuals every September which shows how much they actually spent. I keep everything and went through all previous years, only this year have they made this cockup. I did call their accounts team to ask how much will be charging me, they said £125.54 per week which was the old amount. I told them my new revised letter says £111.60, they said they don't know anything about that and said someone from the service charges team will call me back that was 5 days ago. I was tempted to cancel my direct debit and only pay the amounts I have, but it may be better to see what they actually charge me. Just to reiterate, I requested supporting documents, invoices and receipts for the 2019/2020 service charges well over a month ago, they've committed an offence by not providing me with this, at this point, they've not been able to prove to me that any of the amounts are correct. I'm sure they're still overcharging, they know they've cockedup, and refuse to do anything more about it other than correct the three charges I complained about, for me only, and not for the other 500+ properties here. Oh and I don't know if this changes anything, but my tenancy ends in October 2021, my contract says I need to vacate unless they extend it. We're worried they may not extend it because of all this hassle we're giving them and we will have to move. Lastly, our tenancy agreement actually doesn't say if we have fixed or variable, they never filled in that page.
  7. It's not just badly formatted, the totals don't add up, the column headings don't make sense. For example "Provision of mechanical and electrical" has the same amount on both tables, where as others are different. From what I could understand, the bottom table (should be) the total yearly amounts, so each value should be 52 times the top table, but they've not done that for everything. The bottom table also has a total (not shown) of £125 a week. I called them to ask how much I would be paying, and they're using that amount (£125 vs £111.60 which is on the lastest letter). I've checked my tenancy agreement, and it doesn't actually say if I am fixed or variable, they never filled out the boxes on that one. I'd assume variable though.
  8. Thanks Stu. Do you know where I can find some official documentation about what they're legally allowed to charge for? They're still ignoring me, I plan to go to my MP about this as I've now got a list of people that are being overcharged £100's for their mistakes and they won't do anything unless they complain themselves. I can only assume all 500+ tenants are being 'scammed' by them, it's a huge deal and there needs to be some sort of enquiry.
  9. After the meeting, in which I raised this, they've sent a revised service charges letter. The new amounts (yearly): Communal Electricity - £5.02 (£0.10 a week) Communal Water - £6.03 (£0.10 a week) Fire Protection - £3.66 (£0.10 a week) The weekly's are what they put down on the same letter. Actually looking at this charges sheet, they've messed it up. They've also put the yearly cost for "Provision of mechanical and electrical" as weekly . I think I'll wait for the direct debit to come out of my account and work out if this is just a mistake on paper or if they're over charging me on other charges. Actually, what the hell is going on with this letter? The amounts are all over the place! Look at the "Weekly total for the whole year". Our rent is £101.23 a year? I just called the accounts people just to check what they're going to be charging me and they said £125 a week. The letter says £111.60... Not sure what to do anymore! They're extremely useless. revised service charges letter..pdf
  10. I had already emailed them back before your post, but I will make another formal complaint. I've emailed asking what is happening and when will I get the correct service charges letter but every email gets forwarded to the same person in charge of our service charges and he gets extremely defensive and now has stopped replying to me. It has also been more than one month and a day since I requested supporting documents for all service charges which is a legal requirement under the Landlords and Tenants Act 1985 (section 22) that they make them available within one month. At this point, I've had no other indication that they're not going to charge me the incorrect amounts on my next direct debit. Would it be wise to cancel this until they can send me the new charges letter? Also, there happens to be a Team's meeting with Clarion tonight to give residents the opportunity to voice concerns about the service charges. I'll be sure to join!
  11. This appears to be affecting everyone on the estate. 550+ homes. £633 per household, ~£350,000 in total they nearly over charged for this. Shocking - at least it would be to me if I hadn't seen the BBC Panorama episode which was almost completely based around Clarion and their service charges.
  12. Got a call from Clarion just now, from the person in charge of the service charges who said they put down the charges as weekly, when they should have been for the whole year, which explains why some of the charges are now 50 times more expensive than last year. I don't have much faith in this person, as he admitted he thought something was wrong but couldn't work it out until he saw my email. I pressed him to find out if this is affecting all the flats on the estate, he said he doesn't know, but is going through every service charge correcting them and everyone will yet again get a letter. I of course asked for all this to be in writing which he said he will do.
  13. We've had the "Your new rent and service charges" (from 5th April 2021) letter, and it appears that they're basing our new charges on the original 'Actual Charges 2019/20 letter', and not the 'Revised Actual Charges 2019/20' letter. Communal Electricity 2019/20 Actual charges showed actual costs were £241.73 2019/20 Revised Actual charges showed actual costs were £51.15 New charges we will be paying says £4.90 per week / £254.80 for the year The electricity charges appear to be reasonable (on the revised actual costs letter), they're around the same as previous years, albeit slightly higher year on year. Communal Water 2019/20 Actual charges showed actual costs were £234.91 2019/20 Revised Actual charges showed actual costs were £76.96 New charges we will be paying says £4.62 per week / £240.24 for the year This still doesn't make any sense to us, the water charges for 30 blocks combined (I will take a walk around the estate soon as I don't recognise half of the blocks) was £62,950.18 across two invoices. They completely ignore any requests to know what this is actually for. In previous year's, we've always been charged less than £10 for the entire year. Fire Protection 2019/20 Actual charges showed actual costs were £147.65 2019/20 Revised Actual charges showed actual costs were £41.63 New charges we will be paying says £2.90 per week / £150.80 for the year I went through 6 years of service charge letters and it looks like they've not been doing any of the servicing of the Fire Protection equipment until post Grenfell, which is why the costs were suddenly high. I now plan to write a formal complaint letter raising these points, along with a few other queries, and quoting the Landlord and Tenants Act 1985 (Section 22(2)) that states: "The tenant, or the secretary with the consent of the tenant, may within six months of obtaining the summary require the landlord in writing to afford him reasonable facilities— (a)for inspecting the accounts, receipts and other documents supporting the summary, and (b)for taking copies or extracts from them".
  14. A somewhat good result. After more chasing, they've sent me a spreadsheet of the accounts for fire protection, water charges and electric. Communal Electricity - Estimated £45.00, Actual £241.73 - Revised: £41.63 Communal Water - Estimated £3.66, Actual £234.91 - Revised: £76.96 Fire Protection - Estimated £2.08, Actual £147.65 - Revised: £51.15 Still it seems too high, the total for this estate alone for water charges came to £62,950.07 last year. The thing is, they've listed blocks that don't seem to exist on our estate. Possibly from the new development that has only just been built on the estate, which was finished in the summer this year.
  15. They send a summary every year with the previous year, estimates and actual costs. I used this to work out the increases in the first post. The issue is, they don't break down the charges enough, so we have no idea why "Communal Water" went from an estimate of £3.66 to £234.91. They're telling me that they're waiting for clarification on the service charges before they can tell me anything.
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