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Can anyone make sense of this ?

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RogerS

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The late MIL owned her own flat in a block that was taken over by a Housing Association in 2005. There is an annual bill for ground rent, insurance and all rolled up into one invoice. We're trying to unravel the finances and since we paid (on MIL's behalf before she died) for the current year, the flat now sold and so there should be a refund due to her estate. Below is what the Housing Association has sent. It makes no sense to me. Their accounting system makes no allowance for people actually owning their property. Hence the column 'Rent Debit' isn't a rent per se but the annual bill.

The column Income is what MIL (or us) paid each year. We have no idea what Misc means. Trying to get information out of the Housing Association is like getting blood from a stone.

Does it make sense to you? I know what I think but will keep my conclusions until later.
 

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Rorschach

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That's confusing. Why was more paid om some years than the actual ground rent? Also why does the ground rent vary so much?
 

Blackswanwood

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Roger, my best guess is that there are different elements in the rent amounts most probably made up of Ground Rent and Service Charges.

I have seen something similar from another Housing Association who are leaseholders on my daughters house and concluded they were shoe-horning a leasehold arrangement onto a system that was designed for rental properties ... perhaps this is a market trait.

We got to the bottom of it by getting the e-mail address of the CEO of the Housing Association from ceoemail.com and writing to him. That was after numerous calls speaking to people who were shockingly inept.

Cheers
 

Terry - Somerset

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Assuming the HA have got the amounts and dates right.

I am guessing that the housing association financial year runs from around 1-7th April - possibly changing each year as (for instance) the cut-off date may be the first Saturday in April, not a fixed date. Not normal but not wholly unusual either!

This is why it may appear that some years are paid in advance, some in arrears and in some two years are paid together. Example - £309.03 paid in the year starting 4.4.2016 is the addition of £160.85 on 4.4.16 + £148.18 on 3.4.17.

It is not clear what the miscellaneous items are - but it may even be simply that insurance is estimated when the charges are set at the beginning of the year and corrected mid year when the actual cost is known.

I would be inclined to chase them for a refund of the current year charge, but it may be more trouble than it is worth to go back 15 years to argue the toss on miscellaneous!
 

Richard_C

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The Misc items ended in 2017, and with one exception were trivial amounts so its hardly worth finding out what it was. Many are credits, so if you add the column up 'misc' has cost you about £9 since 2005. If I got an question about that I would wonder why it wasn't asked at the time and give it very low priority. Step back, focus on the bigger stuff.

Looks like an overpayment in 2016 resulted in a negative balance owed which then carried forwards through later years. You kept paying the amount due each year. So , you started the 2020 year with a credit of 173 and a bill of 171, so even if you had continued with the house you could have paid nothing this year and simply wiped off the credit balance.

If you are due a part year refund (lets say it's 90) looks like they will owe you that plus the £2 that they show as a credit balance at start of year.

If you are administering an estate which may well have much bigger things to sort out, surely the 'win' for you is to get a prompt clear closing statement so you can pay or collect amounts due and close off that line in your account, its hardly worth delaying things trying to back-track 15 years.
 

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