Partner’s answers to questions raised by ILA leaseholders meet Wed 13 Jan 2016

Partner’s answers to questions raised by Dr Brian Potter Chairman (ILA) and Leaseholders at the ILA leaseholders meeting held on Wed 13 Jan 2016.‏

Dr Brian Potter Chairman (ILA) has asked me to forward this attachment onto you all from Partners regarding the questions Dr Potter and leaseholders raised at the ILA meeting on Wednesday 13 January 2016 and Partners answers. Please click on the attachment.

Please view below the questions raised by Dr Potter to Partners at the meeting

· When does rolling 5 years Cap run from end of works, end of snagging or making good repairing problems created?

· If the Cap is set when costs were incurred does that mean from when the first cost or last cost in a particular set of major works was incurred?

· Can you confirm that partners no longer make good any damage – created by poor major works? E.g. damp, blown plaster, ruined decorations?

· Can partners conform when the” making good” policy changed, as Partner used to tell Lease holders that they would repair all the damage that arose as a consequence of Partner Major works?

· What guarantee are partner giving these days on the major works they do on Roofs, Windows, damp works. Decorating before partners can rebill Leaseholder for repairing the faults?

· Partners have previously said that they’ll fix problems while they hold the street properties contract & that their roofs should last 30 years?

· Does that mean e.g. that if the 16 year PFI2 contract is terminated in 2022 that any roofs being repaired now are only in effect guaranteed for 8 years?

· Why do Partners never give us a copy of invoices of their expenditure despite it being the law and despite repeated asking?

· Why do Partners repeatedly hand out new bills for repairs to major works that have been badly done in the recent past?

Regards…

Dr Potter

ILA meeting 13.1.16 Partners Response

Building contractor sacked after overcharging housing chiefs £300k

Leaseholders will be interested to know There has been a bit of a sea change in Brighton amongst the councillors and they recently refused the Housing Revenue Account budget for the next 3 years. There has also been another, yet another, scandal regarding overcharging and Mears . More here

ILA Crowdfunding bid to challenge hidden housing repair costs

Reposted from Islington Tribune

LETTERS: Crowdfunding bid to challenge hidden housing repair costs

Published: 27 November, 2015

• IT’S great to see the Tribune has started to report on Islington’s housing problems once again.

What was not reported in this article was that during the scrutiny committee meeting I asked Partners representatives how many surveyors it employed to service the properties it manages on behalf of the council; its answer was approximately 12. Since Islington Council employs another 60 surveyors to service the rest of its housing stock the total number of surveyors paid for by residents is more than 70, and according to the council, the majority of its surveyors are not even Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors qualified.

 Since leaseholders’ bills for cyclic work show that all contracts are inclusive of 11 per cent for “professional fees” to the council, surely we are entitled to expect that the council employs only fullyRICS-qualified staff?

If the council is using potentially unqualified staff (not chartered surveyors) to assess the condition of our homes, how do we know that the costs and quality of the work, for which we are grossly overcharged, actually represents true “value for money”?

The answer is simple. We need to be able to freely inspect the schedule of rates appertaining to the contracts which have been agreed between the council and its contractors. Since we pay the bill we should be able to see just what the council signs us up to.

Curiously, the council not only refuses to allow us to view this document, but has recently attended a court hearing in order to make certain it can reserve the right to restrict legislative compliance to a degree which suits its purpose – basically, to stop residents seeing the cost of their repairs.

In order to challenge this position those concerned need to be able to pursue their case without fear of financial pressures.

Therefore, we are currently examining the possibility of following a course of crowdfunding to finance a challenge. If you are prepared to assist financially please email us on Islington.Leaseholders@hotmail.co.uk.

Remember, if the council does not have to show how your money is spent, it’s you who will have to pay the hidden costs.

DR BS POTTER
Chairman, Islington Leaseholders Association

BBC program wants Council & Partners Leaseholders experiences of works, charges for repairs etc

BBC are doing a programme looking at the experience of leaseholders when it comes to charges for repairing and maintaining communal buildings. They are keen to talk to people who can give them an insight into how this system works – are repairs/maintenance done promptly… is the quality of the work adequate… are the charges that are levied on leaseholders fair etc.? They may want you take part in program.

They are are also keen to talk to PFI leaseholders.

Please mail ILA 2-3 paragraphs with your experiences by Fri 8th May and well pas them on, thanks

Islington Council cherry picker

Details for the cherry picker that has been purchased ( for islington Council tenants repair – its not been clarified if Partners tenants will benefit). It will be used for appropriate repairs for a mixture of trades dependent on access and the suitability of the work.

Download Spec

Service charge limit for leaseholders of social landlords

New mandatory and discretionary reduction of service charges directions for social landlords came into force on 12 August 2014.

Heres a link to Leases’ article on the recent cap

Here are links to the mandatory and discretionary regs

Leaseholder & Freeholder Open Day – Wed 15th October 2014

Come along to the leaseholder open day, and say hello to various ILA directors who will be there.

You can also  talk to Council, Mears, Partners, BreyerGroup about:

Your annual or major works service charges

Future works to your block or estate

Subletting or selling your property

Meet: LEASE – the independent leasehold advice service

Zurich Municipal – building insurance provider

St Mungo’s Broadway – for money and benefit advice

Credit Union – community savings and loans

Building Control – advice on building regulations

Find out more about:

Islington Residential, our property management service for leaseholders who sublet their property

How to have your say

Assisted switching service – assistance with changing energy supplier

on

3pm-7.30pm

Islington Assembly Halls

Upper street

N1 2UD

Invite

Partners repairs drop-in sessions

If you’ve got a repair issue with your Partners managed property you can go and see them in person.

 

Here is a programme of dates for Partners repairs drop-in sessions.

They are running monthly, alternating at the office and just before the forum.

Thursday 17th July (5.30-6.30pm) – Islington Town Hall

Wednesday 20th August (2-4pm) – Colebrooke Place

Thursday 18th September (5.30-6.30pm) – Islington Town Hall

Wednesday 22nd October (2-4pm) – Colebrooke Place

Thursday 19th November (5.30-6.30pm) – Islington Town Hall

Wednesday 17th December (2-4pm) – Colebrooke Place.

Call for photo evidence of poor Council or Partners workmanship on your home

The ILA are looking for photo evidence from Leaseholders of poor workmanship on their home from Islington Council and Partners workers and their contractors for possible publication on our website and social media.

Please email ILA links to your digital photos to this address with name of the contractor.

or send copies of physical photos  to: PO BOX 66633, London N1 1AA

 

Note: Please don’t send more that your 5 best photos – but tell us if you have more,  We can’t return copies of physical photos and paper photocopies may not be be good enough to publish

Spot checks have exposed appalling conditions in council homes

Islington Tribune Letters: by Meg Howarth – Published: 8 November, 2013

• POOR maintenance of Islington’s housing stock isn’t, alas, uncommon or confined to the borough’s estates(Homes repair complaints ‘rising’, November 1).

A group of volunteer housing campaigners carrying out spot checks on randomly selected street properties has exposed some appalling conditions.

Their findings can be seen in a series of photographs at www.islingtonpfi.org.

more here

 

The Leaseholders charter – Download

Leaseholders might find the Council’s own statement of its promises to leaseholders useful when in negotiation over service charges or major works !!!