Leaseholders

Non payment of service charges

If you do not pay your service charges when they are due, you are breaking the contract that gives you your rights to the property.

We will send you reminders before we take any further action and give you the chance to explain why you are not paying the bills. If you disagree with any part of your charges, we will do our best to deal with the problem. If we are satisfied that services you have been charged for have not been provided to a reasonable standard, we will reduce the charges.

If we have to send you more than two reminders without hearing from you we will charge you an additional administration fee for each letter we send. The total amount of these fees will go towards reducing the overall administration fee for all leaseholders. We do this so that leaseholders who pay their service charges on time do not have to pay for reminders sent to leaseholders who don’t pay.

If you are having financial problems

If you are having financial difficulties, we may allow you to pay in instalments and we can help you to apply for Income Support or Pension Credit. When you apply for Income Support or Pension Credit your claim should include your service charges, the ground rent and insurance.

If we do not think that you have a good enough reason for not paying your full service charges, we may take action in the County Court to get the money from you and to take back the lease. If the court agrees that you have broken the conditions of your lease, you must pay the charges plus interest. You must also pay our legal costs.

If you do not pay within the time allowed by the court, we will apply to the court to repossess the flat and you could be evicted. If you lose your home in this way the council may not be able to find you a new home because you will be considered ‘intentionally homeless’.

So you must let us know why you are not paying your service charges so that any problems you are having can be sorted out quickly. If you need to speak to someone regarding paying your service charges then email wfdirect@walthamforest.gov.uk

Welfare benefits

If you are entitled to benefits such as Income Support or Job Seeker’s Allowance, the Benefits Agency can help with interest payments due on loans that you have to take out to pay the service charges for certain types of work done to your building. For more information please contact:

Benefits Agency Mortgage Section
Wentworth House
350 Eastern Avenue
Ilford
IG2 1BR

Alternatively, you can telephone the Benefits Agency Mortgage Section on 020 8532 4200.

You can also get help from the following:

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