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Ground Rent- Demand from Simarc and solicitors letter

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If the lease is 1888 it predates even the S146 which is 1922.


Did you get that lease from Land Registry ?, if not you can order it for about £15 or you may want to get the title deed bit for £3, this should tell you the date of the lease so you can check its same one.




Yes you ONLY have to pay whats in the lease, if nothing in the lease then they cant just pluck extra fees out the air.


Yes they are claiming that you owed £1.20 from 2011 hence its over 3 years hence they can threaten forfeiture, now must leases at this point would allow them to recover costs of not neccassily doing actual forgfeiture but anything 'incidental' to, BUT your lease doesnt even have this clause.


Check Land Registry, get info.


Then write asking which clause allows them to add the extra costs on ?

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Then that must be it then, it allows forfeiture as standard but not any incidental costs, so they cant just make up fees and add them on, lease simply does not allow it, they are well known for trying this on, they prob havnt even read your lease and are just assuming they can add admin fees.

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no mention of costs in lease so cannot be claimed BUT there is something you can bash them with and that is their interruption of your peaceable enjoyment of the property. I would be letting the heirs of Sir John Thursby and Lord Montagu know that Simarc are bothering you and they are responsible for your costs in telling them to foff.

Buying the freehold will set you back about £20 plus the legal fees so it would be well worth considering it. you can go to the valuation tribunal if the freeholder comes up with a figure that is more then that, essentially an 870 year lease at £1.20 a year isnt going to earn then any money so even if they asked for the full value of the lease that will only be a grand.

I would suspect that these people may well hope to bamboozle the lease out of you but would be happy with a few hundred quid for nothing as a consolation. It will be hurting them to collect such a paltry amount so no wonder they think an alternative is better.

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The lease is devoid of any punctuation and as its old it's hard to understand, so j very much doubt simarc have a full understanding of it, hence get the letter off asking what clauses they are relying upon, it could be argued that making such demands without a clear understanding of how they are recoverable could amount to harrasment,


And yes it struck me that the freehold price would be extremely cheap so worth following one of the options to purchase it.



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Right so its clear that the clause Simarc rely upon is a standard forfeit clause, although as lease is 1888 its a bit ancient.


It claims to give them a right to forfeit and re-enter, of course plenty of legislation overrides this now we are 140 years later, they would have to prove breach, LH given chance to fix breach, etc, forfeiture would be almost impossible these days.


What the FH is trying to do NOW is get legal/admin costs, being given a chance to forfeit IS NOT the same as being able to get costs incidental to forfeiture, they are mistaken on this point. The authors of the lease in 1888 clearly didnt not envisage such legal/admin costs.


Id mail them something like...


Dear xxx


Thank you for your letter dated xx/xx/xx


The lease does not contain any clause that allows the recovery of any legal costs or administration charges (described by you as 'Arrears Fee' and 'Our fees inc VAT'), the clause you referred to in your correspondence dated Nov/Dec 20125 ?, merely assets a right to forfeiture and re-entry, it DOES NOT allow for the recovery of any costs before or incidental to forfeiture.


It is well established case law that for such costs to be recovered there must be clear and unambiguous terms within the lease.


I believe it is unacceptable to refuse payment of Ground Rent only on the condition that the extra fees are also paid, Ground Rent and Administration Charges are separate entities and should be treated as such, should this matter be placed before a court I shall inform them that the claim is unreasonable and vexatious and that I shall seek to recover my costs.


I refer you to the LVT Case CAM/00KF/LSC/2013/0057 - Sudely gardens v Mr Paul John Stacey which also relates to a case where the Landlord only accepted payment of Ground Rent on the condition that Administration Charges were also paid, the tribunal commented that the Landlord had acted unreasonably and it was tantamount to an abuse of process.


I also refer you to the LVT case CAM/00KG/LSC/2013/0149 & 2014/0019, 0030 and 0031 - Freehold Managers (Nominees) Ltd. v Ibrahim Mohammed Jalloh where the Tribunal commented "The claim against Ms. Davies for a £24 arrears charge for the ground rent arrears has not been allowed as she satisfied the Tribunal that she had offered to pay this and such offer was refused. If the Applicant wants to refuse ground rent for tactical reasons connected with forfeiture, then it cannot expect lessees who offer the money to be penalised in this way"

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