You have been disgruntled by the way your landlord maintains your block of flats for a while; although you recently discover that the other tenants sharing the block feel the same. The services provided are second rate and you are all paying far too higher fee.

One of the tenants suggests consulting a specialist solicitor with a view to forming a right to manage company and over the management yourself.

This sounds like a brilliant idea. Neverheless you should consider that in taking over the right to manage you will have important responsibilities to deal with, find out exactly what these will involve before starting your right to manage process.

Some of the issues to think about when considering right to manage (often called RTM) are:

– the leaseholders must manage the building via a right to manage company which means understanding legal procedures for company formation.

– the leaseholders – who will become officers of the new RTM company – must wish to be involved for the long haul.

– these officially designated persons will consist of directors, a chairman and company secretary; they will have usual duties expected of company directors, and landlords.

– the right to manage company must be open to and available for critical comment from remaining landlords in the same way as the landord has been.

– regular meetings must be held to keep company communications up to date.

– bookkeeping, accounts, legal requirements and other essential criteria must be checked.

– prompt payment of charges by tenants is essential to maintain solvency of the RTM company.

– any problems or conflicts between tenant Leaseholders must be handled correctly.

– compliance with various company, housing, health and safety laws must be met.

– an awareness is built of the Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) Regulations 2006 (TUPE). This helps look after employee's rights when a business transfer takes place.

Obviously, you solitor will explain things properly, help and support you. It's a good idea to search for a specialist RTM lawyer who has plenty of experience of this aspect of Law and can give the right advice for a hassle-free process.

The right to manage is a positive opportunity for tenants (the leaseholders) who actually own most of the value in the building to control their own affairs. They will be directly involved in decision-making about the management and maintenance of their flats. Imagine how good it will feel when your service charges fall and yet you find you have vastly improved service!

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