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Help being chased DCA for monies already paid


mike1
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Hi

I need some advice on the following situation

I live in a flat where I pay ground rent and service charges in the lattar half of 2005 I feel behind with a term of payment. Owing Dobern Property management £719.88 (including charges) At the start of 2006 Dobern Properties handed over the management of the property to Country Wide Management. Who then chased me for the outstanding balance of £719.88. I then proceeded to pay Country Wide for this debt which I cleared. I then recieved another letter from Dobern Properties demanding the 719.88 plus charges again. This has continued throughout 2006 and 2007. With Dobern Properties refusing to answer my calls or respond to letters showing them that I have paid the amount. I ven got Country Wide Property to send them a statement of my account detailing the status.

 

They still collect the yealy ground rent on this property of £22.50 and not the service charges. They have now refered the so called oustanding amount to Property Debt Collections LTD. Who I have also sent all correspondence to and explained to them the situation.

 

They now claim I owe over £1,800 in ground rent, I have continued to try and pay Dobern properties the twice yealy amount of £22.50 for the ground rent but they have refused to cash my cheques and now have sent my december cheque back to me via PDC Agency.

 

What do I do? Dobern properties keep adding charges to the so called bill and keep sending me monthly reminders so do the property debt collection agency.

 

Has anyone had experience of this to offer some advice...:confused:

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If you can prove that you have paid the amount and have proof of this, there is really very little they can do. It may be a simple enough problem. have you checked to see if CWM have actually forwarded the amounts paid to Dobern. If they haven't then there is a contractual issue between those two and this should not have bearing on you at all.

 

If the amount is no longer outstanding, what are the charges they add to the account?

 

Ensure that when your ground rent payments are sent, they are with a covering letter and sent registered post, that way they cannot later come back and say you didn't pay them.

 

I think a letter of clarification is in order, stating times, dates and amounts paid etc. ask them directly, what is the reason for the addition of charges and the repeated demands for monies already paid. let them explain why they are doing this.

Hope this helps

 

 

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Please note: i am not a qualified lawyer, any advice is offered in good faith and is based on my own and others experiences and a penchant for research and a desire to help others to empower themselves

 

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  • 2 months later...

Hi Mike,

 

This is probably too late to help you - but I'll add it anyway in case it helps someone else.

 

I used to own a leasehold property that Dobern Properties Ltd were the freeholders of.

 

Shortly after placing the property on the market in 2005 Dobern Properties Ltd made a freeholder's demand for around £1200.00 relating to an insurance incident almost 2 years previous.

 

I disputed the demand immediately and numerous letters then went back and forth between myself and Dobern Properties Ltd.

 

My hand was eventually forced into paying Dobern Properties Ltd's demand; not doing so would have caused the sale of the property concerned to collapse.

 

6 months after I'd moved out of the property I re-opened the matter with Dobern Properties Ltd. Several more letters were exchanged but Dobern Properties Ltd remained resolute they had done nothing wrong.

 

I eventually ran out of patience when they accused me of "making idle threats" and I issued proceedings against them in Croydon County Court.

 

I successfully obtained judgment in default (for an amount to be decided by the Court) as they failed to respond to the claim form.

 

Dobern Properties Ltd attempted to derail proceedings and get my judgment set aside by claiming they never received any paperwork from the Court. A hearing took place and the District Judge dismissed their application to have judgment set aside. The Judge was none too impressed by Dobern Properties Ltd's behaviour at that hearing.

 

A hearing was arranged to decide the amount payable. Dobern Properties Ltd made two "offers" to settle prior to the hearing which I rejected on principle. One month before the hearing was due to take place Dobern Properties Ltd settled in full including all costs.

 

Robert Kingston, Dobern Properties Ltd's "Office Manager" is nothing short of an arrogant, obnoxious bully. His brother, Leslie Kingston (who is one of the directors of Dobern Properties Ltd) isn't much better.

 

I undertook quite in-depth research into their business activities and am more than willing to share any of that research with anyone that needs it.

 

If you get into a dispute with Dobern Properties Ltd STAND UP TO THEM.

 

Do NOT give in and don't be intimidated by either Leslie or Robert Kingston.

 

My case wasn't the first time Dobern Properties Ltd had made demands to one of their leaseholders...

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  • 3 weeks later...

Hi there all,

 

I have just picked up this thread from searching for Leslie Kingston at Dobern via Google. I too have the unfortunate situation of having to deal with the Kingston brothers and there so called Property Managment Company, Dobern.

 

You mention you've done quite a bit of research into the company, anything you could share would be appreciated. I own a property where the overall building and freehold is managed by Dobern. I am preparing a case to take to the Leasehold Tribunal Service challenging the reasonableness of service charges, particulalry buildings insurance.

 

Look forward to hearing from you.

 

Reagrds, rightlads.

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 1 month later...
If you can prove that you have paid the amount and have proof of this, there is really very little they can do. It may be a simple enough problem. have you checked to see if CWM have actually forwarded the amounts paid to Dobern. If they haven't then there is a contractual issue between those two and this should not have bearing on you at all.

 

If the amount is no longer outstanding, what are the charges they add to the account?

 

Ensure that when your ground rent payments are sent, they are with a covering letter and sent registered post, that way they cannot later come back and say you didn't pay them.

 

I think a letter of clarification is in order, stating times, dates and amounts paid etc. ask them directly, what is the reason for the addition of charges and the repeated demands for monies already paid. let them explain why they are doing this.

 

HI, I have been having problems with Dobern Property Management too. I am an owner of a flat in London. DB Management are the freeholders. I am trying to sell the flat but they are obstructing the sale. They are refusing to provide me with an information why there was a claim of 2000 GBP paid for some work on the property which was never carried out. My buyer has pulled out from the sale because we did not get any response from Dobern Property Management. THey said they will not answer this question and they continuously kept putting the phone down on me, my solicitor and my buyer's solicitors. I dont know what can I do to clarify why there was a payment made and no work had to be carried out. I needed to pay for the structural survey but this didnt help either. Dobern Property Management is no willing to answer any letters sent to them by my or buyers solicitors and they are very rude on the phone. Especially Mr. Kingston. Please help me. Thank you

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Hi harry11 and welcome to CAG. You need to start your own thread on your situation. If you don't know how to do that ave a read here http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/welcome-consumer-forums/107001-how-do-i-dummies.html

HAVE YOU BEEN TREATED UNFAIRLY BY CREDITORS OR DCA's?

 

BEWARE OF CLAIMS MANAGEMENT COMPANIES OFFERING TO WRITE OFF YOUR DEBTS.

 

 

Please note opinions given by rory32 are offered informally as a lay-person in good faith based on personal experience. For legal advice, you must always consult a registered and insured lawyer.

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Especially Mr. Kingston. Please help me. Thank you

Harry,

 

This comes as no surprise. Robert (Bob) Kingston is one of the most arrogant bullies I've ever come across.

 

My advice would be to issue Dobern with a 7 day letter that you intend to instigate county court proceedings if they fail to respond to you.

 

You can instigate proceedings for an amount to be decided by the court. You simply put "I do not expect my claim to exceed ." on the claim form.

 

If you do proceed with the claim, you need to use Dobern's Registered Office address which is:

 

Dobern Property Management

C/O Howard Schneider Spiro & Steele

Constable House

5 Bulwer Road

BARNET

EN5 5JD

 

Don't be intimidated by either Robert or Leslie Kingston.

 

I can email you further information about my experience with Dobern if you'd like to PM me your email address...

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  • 1 year later...

Hi all thanks for the responses

I really thought I was the only one facing these issues with Dobern Properties. Since this first thread they continued to send me demand letters with extra charges. I tried to get through to Robert Kingston who continued to ignore me. The funny thing was Property debt kept sending me demands which kept reducing each time they sent them, example in december 2008 they said I owed £1800 then in Jan 2009 this had dropped to £600 and now its £400. Whilst the Dobern demands kept increasing month on month and still they refuse to answer my calls, emails or letters. I am now in the final stages of going through the county courts as they tried to put a county court judgement against me which I successfully managed to set aside. Just waiting on their answer to my defence.:-(

I think we should group together and send this through to Watchdog or something as these people are clear bullies.

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All,

It was a relief to read your entries- we have purchased a property and have Dobern as the freeholders - we are incapable of receiving information from them and have been sent threatening letters. I'd be interested in hearing the results of your upcoming court judgement- we have repeadily asked for further information on who they are, what their charges are for and what it all means, coupled with CountryWides inability to get it right this is turning into a small project which frankly it shouldn't be ...I'll ask gjhuk if he'd be kind enough to let me know some of the information which he has acquired - it seems to me like these people are just exploiting their position and running a mock! We just seem to be forking out cash for no service whatsoever ....does anyone know how we could get rid of them as freeholders ...short of them selling the freehold?

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Mike - Watchdog wouldn't be interested. Dobern Properties Ltd activity aren't on a big enough scale for them to be interested in them.

 

Dobern Properties Ltd are operating just under the radar. And they know it.

 

Freeholders such as Dobern Properties Ltd are not regulated. Despite "reforming" leasehold laws in recent years, there's still no regulatory body who you can complain to.

 

In theory the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) might offer some advice, but I rather suspect they'll bounce you back to your Local Trading Standards service.

 

If you've suffered financially as a result of something Dobern Properties Ltd has (or hasn't) done your only real option is to instigate proceedings in your local county court.

 

Be prepared for a trip to Ilford County Court though!

 

Sawzibelle, I've replied to your PM...

 

I sued Dobern Properties Ltd and won. I attended a preliminary hearing at Ilford County Court with a Deputy District Judge and Robert Kingston.

 

The hearing didn't last that long. Kingston was advised to seek proper advice and whilst the Judge didn't make an official judgement his advice to Kingston was to settle the claim.

 

Do not be intimidated by Robert Kingston. Stand your ground.

 

Cheers,

 

GJH

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  • 2 years later...

Hi! I'm in the process of buying a leasehold property which is managed/freehold owned by Dobern Properties Ltd (still early stage, my solicitor is yet to receive paperwork from the vendor's solicitor). The homebuyer survey has come back with roof problems which I've got quotes for an will cost about £4,000 to repair. Since this work needs to be carried out by the freeholder with all 4 leaseholder paying their share I'm concerned to read about the negative experiences people have had with this management company!

 

Can anyone sent me by PM any more information on them, what their service charges are like etc. Anything at all will be helpful for me to see whether I should proceed with the sale knowing there could be trouble ahead in terms of repairing the roof!

 

Thanks!

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  • 1 year later...
Hi! I'm in the process of buying a leasehold property which is managed/freehold owned by Dobern Properties Ltd (still early stage, my solicitor is yet to receive paperwork from the vendor's solicitor). The homebuyer survey has come back with roof problems which I've got quotes for an will cost about £4,000 to repair. Since this work needs to be carried out by the freeholder with all 4 leaseholder paying their share I'm concerned to read about the negative experiences people have had with this management company!

 

Can anyone sent me by PM any more information on them, what their service charges are like etc. Anything at all will be helpful for me to see whether I should proceed with the sale knowing there could be trouble ahead in terms of repairing the roof!

 

Thanks!

 

Hi there - I am now in a similar position and I wondered how things turned out for you?

 

Thanks.

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