Handbook 

 Southwood Hall Estate


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SOUTHWOOD HALL ESTATE
Residents Handbook including
Interpretation Guidance of the Lease and Regulations
November 2007

SECTION1 INTRODUCTION

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Most people would agree that our Estate, which includes: Southwood Hall, Wood lane, Muswell Hill Road and South Close, is a fine place in which to live. The flats are of good size and well-made, reflecting some of the style of the more generous time of their building, and the gardens are beautiful, even grand, particularly because of several magnificent trees. Despite being within easy reach of Central London, in most directions the views might lead you to think you were living in the country rather than one of the largest towns on earth, because of sitting between two ancient woods. The tube and buses are conveniently close, Muswell Hill is a good place to shop, and Brent Cross isn't too far away. There are several quite good restaurants in the Archway Road, Highgate and an enormous variety in Crouch End and some reliable pubs too.

We owe most of these advantages to happy accidents in the past, even the remote past. The ice decided to stop here for long enough to build hills many thousands of years ago; in the Middle Ages the Bishops of London enjoyed hunting here (the name Highgate is from Highgate - a gate in the high hedge that bounded their estate), and in the times of the plague the victims were buried in Church Bottom and not disturbed for many years for fear of the Pest returning, so there was open land for Southwood Hall, and eventually the school that replaced it, and our estate at last.

The rules and regulations in the Lease and Regulations, and the "Interpretation Guidance" in this handbook, are simply a codification of the principles that are needed whenever more than very small numbers of people live close together. Even if you live in a house with a separate garden, you have to modify what you do out of consideration for your neighbours. Living much closer to one another as we do here obliges us to be rather more so, but still the underlying principle is being considerate. Everything we do has to be done with a constant awareness of how, or whether it will affect others.

Inside our own flats we can mostly do as we please, but as soon as what we do has effects beyond its bounds, we need to think of others. This applies as much to noise as water from an overflowing washing machine. It is even more obvious when we use the garden, or the car parks, or other common spaces. Then the other simple principle comes into operation - making compromises. All the rules are attempts to define the compromises we all have to make, between what we do that would suit ourselves, and what others require we do so that they stay comfortable. In both cases, the spirit of compromise means that we are reasonably suited in what we want, and others are not unreasonably disturbed or restricted.

We, the current directors hope you will read and accept these rules - and this interpretation guidance - in this spirit. In our turn, we undertake to be as reasonable as we can, and try to mediate in any differences with the same aim, of finding workable compromises.

The AGM on 12 December confirmed this approach, and endorsed this spirit of compromise; "We hope that wherever there are conflicts between resident and resident or between resident and Managing Company, they can be dealt with quickly
on a face to face basis".

SECTION II: MANAGEMENT OF THE ESTATE

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The Two Companies

 

Southwood Hall Management Ltd ("SHML") and

 

Southwood Hall Estate Limited ("SHEL")

 

The two companies have different functions. SHEL owns the freehold of the Estate, meaning the buildings, pathways, boundary walls and gardens, which it bought in 1988. It is therefore the Lessor in terms of our leases. SHML is responsible for the management of the Estate in accordance with the terms of the leases, which are more or less identical, save of course in respect of service charge percentages, which vary broadly, but not entirely, with the size of individual flats.

Nearly all residents on the Estate own the lease of their flats, which means that they also own one share in SHML and nearly all also own one share in SHEL. Owners of some flats have not taken up the opportunity to become shareholders in SHEL.

It would be best for the two companies to be merged but this cannot be done while some residents are not shareholders in SHEL. This makes for administrative complications, like needing separate sets of accounts and AGMs for both companies, and elections for a Board of Directors from amongst the residents for each company. In practice it has been the custom for the 2 AGMs to be held one after the other, for the initial election to be for the Board of SHEL. The Articles of Association for SHML provide for five Directors, and for three of them to be appointed by the Board of SHEL, the other two being appointed directly by the shareholders in SHML, that is, all the lessees. Custom and practice has led to the two companies having the same five directors.

Since it would be advantageous in many ways for there to be just one company, those not owning their share in SHEL are encouraged to purchase one, and greatly increase the re-sale value of their property by extending their lease at the same time. This would not only simplify matters, but also clear the way for an increase in the number of Directors, say to six, to share the workload and support automatic rotation, the two longest serving to stand down each year, thus ensuring both continuity and fresh initiatives. The Directors, ideally, represent a balance of age, gender and the different parts of the estate.

The Role of the Board of Directors

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The Board's task is to set the policy for the effective running of the Estate, to appoint and guide the Managing Agent, and to take the overall decisions, including budget setting and determining the level of service charges. As residents of the Estate, the Directors are available, when needed, as part of their commitment to the good running of the estate in the interest of all residents.

The Current Directors, elected at the AGM on 16 January 2008 are:
Eamon Daly
Eamon is an experienced company director with an established track record in senior management, gained in blue chip advertising agencies and international publishing. Eamonn has particular responsibility for financial matters on the Estate.

Robert Neden
Robert studied music at Oxford and has spent many years working in education, both in schools and with adults, including forming and conducting the Highgate Chamber Orchestra. Apart from music examining, he is developing training material for string teachers. He hopes our Estate can benefit from his extensive experience of working with people, and from his practical skills developed over many years’ involvement with building projects. Robert has lived in the area since 1966, and on the Estate since 2003 with his wife Susan.
As Robert is sometimes out of the country, a “shadow director” is proposed to deputise for Robert in his absence:

Derek Osborn
Derek and his partner Linda Adams moved to the Estate last September. Derek had a first career in the Civil Service and has since been on various Boards and acts as an adviser and consultant on environmental matters, He currently spends a day or two most weeks in Brussels, advising the Commission and the Parliament. As well as his considerable management experience he will bring valuable insight as a new lessee.
Derek will be invited to Board meetings as a non-director, and to contribute, but not vote. But he, like all the formal directors will be bound by all of the usual director’s duties and responsibilities, in accordance with the implementation of the Companies Act 2006.

Carolina Graterol
Carolina is an Artist and Spanish Teacher. She is also a former journalist. She has particular responsibility for the social and communication work of the Board, organising social events, producing the residents Newsletter and now developing the web-site.

Hilary Philpot
Hilary moved to Southwood Hall with her family in 1960 as a child and bought the property approximately eight years ago with her mother. After qualifying and working in Fashion and Textile design, Hilary developed an interest in Health and Safety and following intensive training has held several H & S Management posts She has particular responsibility for Health and Safety on the Board.

Rachel Pierce,
Rachel has lined on the state for 24 years, for 11 years at Wood Lane, before moving to Southwood Hall. Her career was in social work, social work education and management, which she combined with being a Justice of the Peace (J.P.) She has considerable management experience, and since October 2005 has been chair of the Board of Directors of both companies.

Day to Day Management of the Estate

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The Estate Manager and Assistant Estate Manager (Phil and Jenny Sorrell)
Phil and Jenny have lived on the estate for nearly 9years. They are employed to ensure the smooth running of the estate and to deal with any external problems affecting our flats. They are the first point of management contact on the Estate, and residents should refer any maintenance queries and concerns initially to them. Where necessary and appropriate they will refer on immediately to the Managing Agent or a Director.

Phil's hours of work are Mon - Fri 8 am - 5 pm and Sat 8 am - 12 pm. Jenny works mornings only.

Set out below is a list of the duties they have when they are not sorting out reactive issues around the estate, some are carried out daily, others weekly.

Provision of help and assistance
 

Running a helpline for residents as a first port of call for emergencies such as leaks, power failure

Providing First Aid for Southwood Hall Estate (Phil)
Keeping notice boards up to date in communal areas
Dealing with general enquiries raised by residents
Mail collection and delivery
  Mail forwarding for absent residents or those who have moved on
Holding a list of emergency numbers for residents and lessees
Taking in deliveries
Dealing with general enquiries raised by residents
Delivery of Managing Agents' information including newsletters, general information etc
Parking
  Issuing of permits
Managing parking for lessees and contractors
Checks on car parks to ensure only authorised residents parking
Staff management
  Managing all aspects of staff working directly for the estate (there are 2 cleaners, Christine Carrington and Lucia Vennai, and the yard man Geudrav Kachlia, and linking with the contracting gardeners Ian Sadler and his son Tim
Management of refuse collection
Maintenance of a holiday rota for staff
Contractor management
  Managing all aspects of fixed term contractors working for the estate
Liaison with contractors on the estate (including residents' contractors), ensuring they are competent and have adequate insurance to carry out works
Spot checks on contractors to ensure they are working safely
Liaison with contractors for intercom faults etc
Maintaining a list of approved contractors
General maintenance
  Preparation of a schedule of general works required around the estate
Changing lamps and cleaning lamp coverings in communal areas
Adjusting time clocks when appropriate
Undertaking minor painting and decorating in common parts
Undertaking of minor repairs on site
Clearing gutters if required
Inspections
  Weekly inspections of roof areas, guttering and common parts of the estate, both internal and external, to identify health, safety and maintenance issues
Reactive inspections of communal areas on request by residents e.g. for damp, leaks etc
Passing information to the Managing Agent to make sure issues are highlighted and rectified
Meetings
  Regular meetings with the Managing Agent to discuss issues arising from the estate and including walks around the Estate
Meetings with staff to highlight issues concerning their employment and to ensure issues or concerns can be raised by staff
Finance
  Managing petty cash accounts
Liaison with managing agent to ensure adequate funds for relevant small purchases
Purchase of cleaning and first aid supplies as required
Collating estimates for insurance claims

 

The Managing Agents

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Rendall & Rittner Limited, Gun Court, 70 Wapping Lane, London E1W 2RF,< XML="true" PREFIX="SKYPE" NAMESPACE="">              020 7702 0701       ,  were very recently appointed as Managing Agents from 14 October 2007. Following an extensive Section 20 Consultation process with all leaseholders, a long-term contract has been issued, subject to satisfactory performance. The contract can be terminated by either party to the contract, by giving at least six months' notice in writing to the other party.

The Property Manager responsible for the Estate is Stephen Ellman. His contact details are as follows: Direct Dial:                                                                       020 7481 6783                                    and e-mail address: Stephen.Ellman@rendallandrittner.co.uk
Stephen will be assisted by Lisa Rudnick. Her contact details are as follows: Direct Dial                                                                       020 7481 6783                                    and e-mail: Lisa.Rudnick@rendall&rittner.co.uk

Emergency Service: R & R operate an emergency service. This is operated out of hours by contacting the reception number:                                                                       020 7702 0701                                   , which in turn refers the caller to the emergency contractor.

The Managing Agent is responsible for carrying out the Board's policy, providing the information required, following up the Board's decisions, ensuring effective actions to implement them and for management supervision of all maintenance work carried out. The MA is responsible to the Board for preparing budgets, for managing the finances, within the set budgets, for raising the service charges, for guiding and supervising the work of the Estate Manager, and for responding to residents issues, either directly, or by referral to and from the Estate Manager and Directors.

Managing Agents Specific Duties and Responsibilities

  • Advising the Board of Directors and implementing its decision
  • Preparing a regular report for each Board meeting
  • Taking minutes of the Board's decisions and actions required
  • Implementing them within agreed time-scales
  • With the Estate Manager (EM) advising the Board on maintenance work required and overseeing its completion
  • Planning a longer term programme to cover health and safety (H & S) requirements and ensure the sound maintenance of the Estate
  • Presenting the Board with regular financial information
  • Preparing the annual budget with the Service Charge implications
  • Carrying out the role and functions of Company Secretary

Management of the Estate

  • Managing the work of the Estate Manager and overseeing that the various responsibilities listed above are carried out satisfactorily
  • Making regular site visits and walk rounds with the Estate manager
  • Identifying and investigating H & S and maintenance issues
  • Arranging for contractor specifications and tenders
  • Consulting residents (Section 20 notices) for major works, as required by law
  • Overseeing the contracting of major works, including all the essential documentation
  • Maintaining and updating a database of Landlord and Tenant interest and a list of "approved" contractors

Liaison with Residents

  • Communicating regularly with residents on both general and specific issues
  • Responding promptly to residents' concerns - letters, e-mails, phone calls - acknowledging them within 48 hours
  • Informing residents of each service charge demand and following up any delay in payment or non compliance
  • Dealing with any insurance claims arising from external faults
  • Keeping files and records for each property
  • Advising residents on all matters relating to their property, the need for approval for alterations, for licences etc (See Appendix 1)
  • Ensuring that Lessees are informed, when necessary, about their obligations within the terms of the Lease and raising any ensuing problems with the Board

Financial

  • Overseeing a computerised management and accounts record
  • Overseeing the maintenance and administration of the Estate bank accounts
  • Arranging the annual preparation and audit of the Estate Accounts
  • Liaising with the Inland Revenue over all income tax issues and end of year forms

 

The Estate Solicitor

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Stanley Tee Solicitors were appointed as solicitors for the estate in October 2005. David J. Culshaw, Assistant to Govan Bramley, Senior Partner, is dealing with Southwood Hall, as and when legal advice is required.
Contact details: Stanley Tee, High Street, Bishop's Stortford,
Herts CM23 2LU Phone:                                                                       01279 755200                                   

The Estate Auditors

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Burgess Hodgeson, Chartered Accountants were appointed as Auditors to the Estate in 2006 to undertake the annual audit of both companies' accounts for the financial year 2005-6. At the AGM on 16 January 2008, their audited accounts were accepted, and they were reappointed to audit the accounts for 2007-8.

SECTION III COMMUNICATION WITH RESIDENTS

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The Southwood Hall Residents Newsletter

 

This is a new innovation, to convey as much information as possible about the Board Meetings and general information about the Estate, whilst keeping the anonymity of individual residents. There have been 7 issues so far. Two Directors - Hilary Philpot and Carolina Graterol - have improved the style and lay-out, and contributions from residents are welcomed.

It is very important that the Board is kept fully informed about issues on the Estate and for this reason it is hoped that the Board of Directors will continue to have at least one representative from each of the buildings on the Estate. Direct consultations are also necessary for any proposed developments or contentious issues.

Consultation will be enhanced enormously by e-mail and by the planned web-site. The e-mail addresses of all Directors, the Estate manager and the Managing Agent are included earlier in this handbook. Many of you supplied your e-mail addresses at the AGM, but very annoyingly these were mislaid. It would be a great help if all residents would supply theirs. Consistent with the Data Protection Act, e-mail addresses will remain confidential, apart from any authorisation.

SECTION IV INTERPRETATION GUIDANCE OF THE LEASE

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All residents, who are owners have signed the Lease for their flat, and the lease has with it 5 schedules of regulations. The standard lease for the flats on the Estate dates from 1972 (many years before the Freehold was purchased), and it is apparent, from reading it, that it is a "standard", rather than a "bespoke" lease. It is written in arcane language and could be much better understood if re-written, but the legal costs of changing the lease prevent this way forward. Hence the Board's decision to produce this handbook with its "Interpretation Guidance", which has followed consultation with residents, on some aspects of the Lease and Regulations.

Alterations Clause 2. (3)

The lease for this Estate states clearly Not at any time …..to make any alterations in or additions to the Demised Premises (flat) or any part thereof nor cut maim alter or injure any of the walls or timbers nor alter the landlords fixtures therein. The leases for most Blocks of Flats state this, but they also include a final phrase without the Lessor's prior written consent. For some unknown reason this phrase is omitted in the SH lease. If we were/are to regard this clause in the Lease as absolute, no internal alterations could be made at all.

In fact, an enormous number of alterations have been made to flats, mostly internally, but in a few cases externally, on the basis that the lease "should allow" alterations when consent is sought, and if the alterations are deemed appropriate.
Internal decorations and minor internal improvements can be undertaken without formal approval, but no form of serious alteration should commence without prior assessment and consent.

The form of consent may either be a formal 'Deed of Consent with a Licence' for more substantial works, or a less formal 'approval to go ahead' for other work. The Managing Agent will provide the necessary advice on the consent required; in general it should not be withheld so long as the surveyor and managing agent recommend to the Board that there is no damage or detriment to the estate and the planned work will be of a high quality. Further details are provided in the following Appendices:

Appendix 1 of this Handbook provides important detailed guidance for carrying out works and alterations to flats. Appendix 2 provides detailed guidance for contractors doing work on the Estate. Residents are advised to go through both these appendices carefully if they are planning refurbishment of their flats. Copies of Appendix 2 will be available for residents to give to any contractor working for them

Subletting Clause 3. (2) ©.

The lease states "Not to create any sub-tenancy or other occupation of the Demised premises or any part thereof PROVIDED THAT the whole of the Demised premises may be let furnished for a period not exceeding twenty four months in any period of thirty six consecutive months AND PROVIDED ALSO that the Lessee may create a sub-demise by way of mortgage or charge.

The Clause is clearly there to maintain the Estate as an owner occupied Estate, which all lessees support, but some have found this a restriction on the sale of their flats, some with overseas postings have found this time limit too restricting. Whilst this is a definite clause in the Lease, the Board had proposed this should be no more regarded as absolute than the above Clause on alterations, and had proposed that the Board should exceptionally be able to consider individual applications for longer sub-letting periods where there is good cause and satisfactory tenants.

However, a Shareholder Resolution against this proposal was carried by the AGM on 12 December 2006, and the Board was instructed to enforce the Sub-letting Clause as it stands.

Lessees, sub-letting within the terms of the Lease, are reminded that within one calendar month they must supply full details of the new tenants, the sub-letting details and their own contact details to the Managing Agent.

SECTION V INTERPRETATION GUIDANCE

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THE FIRST SCHEDULE: Regulations

 

The first schedule sets out in detail regulations, which also date from 1972, prior to the freehold of the flats being purchased by SHEL. This Handbook provides "Interpretation Guidance", agreed at the AGM on 12 December 2006, appropriate to support and sustain effective community living, respecting the rights of individuals and families to enjoy their own homes, but not at the expense of their neighbours' rights to peaceful enjoyment. In this respect, it is important to take note of the Lease Clause (A) (8) (c) "The lessors (Management Company) have previously granted leases……………and intend in every future lease and tenancy agreement to impose regulations set forth in the First Schedule hereto to the intent that any of the lessees (residents) for the time being may be able to enforce the observance of the said regulations by any other of the lessees.

It is also important to take note of the First Schedule Clause 16.: All further or other rules and regulations made at any time and from time to time by the Lessors or by the Management Company on behalf of the Lessors in addition to or substitution for the foregoing rules and regulations or any of them which the Lessors or the Management Company may deem necessary or expedient for the safety care or cleanliness of the Block the Buildings and the Estate or any part thereof or for securing the comfort and convenience of all lessees in the estate PROVIDED ALWAYS that no such further or other rules and regulations may be made hereunder which shall subject the Lessee to any unusual or unreasonable burden.

This "Interpretation Guidance" addresses some, but not all of the 1st Schedule Regulations. If Residents wish for guidance on others, please let the Directors know, and further guidance can be considered and consulted on.

Some of the regulations are self-evident, have caused no problems and no interpretation guidance is proposed; for example:

Regulation 1. Single family occupancy only
Regulation 2. Prohibition of use as business premises
Regulation 3. Prohibition of window placards

Some have self-evident safety implications:

Regulation 5. Not to do or permit to be done any act or thing which may render void or voidable any policy of insurance

Regulation 9 Not to use any electrical device without an effective suppressor fitted

Some are matters for sensitive respect for - and negotiation with - nearby neighbours, for example:

Regulation 4. Considerate use of radios, TVs, playing of musical instruments at all times; the regulation specifies a prohibition on these between the hours of 11.0 pm and 8 am.

Regulation 10. At all times to cover and keep covered with carpets and underlay the floors other than the bathroom and kitchen, which shall be covered with cork rubber or other sound absorbing material. The Estate was built with very beautiful wooden parquet floors, and the wish to sand or polish them is clearly obvious. Despite its very solid construction, the transmission of noise between floors is sometimes extremely noticeable. The annoyance this causes can be serious.

Neighbours are encouraged to seek to resolve this, through peaceful discussion, and hopefully a negotiated resolution, if necessary, with the help of the Managing Agent or a Director. The consultation confirmed this approach, acknowledging the existence of the regulation, but hoping that compromise will prevail, and that it will never need to be enforced.

Other Regulations, which require further guidance:

Regulation 14. The Use of the Gardens: Not to allow children to play in the landings passages staircases or in the gardens (if any) thereto unless areas are set aside in which children may play. This regulation clearly demonstrates that the SH Standard Lease was/is not a "bespoke" lease; there are gardens here, which need to be enjoyed, considerately, by residents of all ages. More than ever now, there is a wide range of ages living on the Estate, and the importance of mutual respect - the young for the older residents and the older for the young residents - is increasingly essential.

The AGM on 12 December 2007 endorsed the following proposals, as the way the Estate will now interpret Regulation 14:

  • Toddlers are welcome to play in the gardens, providing they are supervised by an adult, and that the latter is sensitive to the other residents who are using the garden.
  • Youngish children are also welcome to play in the garden, but an adult should be in reasonable distance, should the children be insensitive to other residents using the garden.
  • Teenagers, however, should not use the garden for games that could interfere with the enjoyment of others, or risk damage to plants or shrubs: they should use the woods opposite.
  • Sufficient benches should be provided by the Management Company, so all parts of the garden can be enjoyed peacefully.
  • The garden should be available for parties, but arrangements should be discussed with the MA or a director for any large party

The following proposed advice for handling any potential difficulties in the garden was also endorsed. "Problems in the garden are best sorted out there and then. If people are annoying you by behaving inconsiderately, it is much more effective to have a friendly word with them immediately, than to complain to a director or managing agent". The directors will, of course, expect residents, older, middle aged, or young, to let us know if any problems in the gardens persist.

Some regulations perhaps require greater transparency over their implementation, always in the spirit of balancing the individual flat owner's rights with those of the community.

Regulation 8. Not to keep any animal, bird or reptile without the written permission of the Management Company, which if given shall be deemed to be by way of licence revocable at will.

At the AGM on 12 December 2006, within the terms of the above lease, it was agreed:
1. Dogs may not live on the Estate, but they may visit the Estate, including over night stays, provided they are kept on the lead when on the Estate, that they do not foul the common parts, or cause any nuisance to residents.
2. Cats do not require prior permission; however, if any cats do cause a nuisance, complaint can be made to the Management Company, within the terms of the lease.
3. Small caged animals do not require permission.

5. Car Parking: The First Schedule - Regulations Clause 15.
Not to leave or park or permit to be left or parked so as to cause any obstruction in or on any approach roads or passageways adjacent or leading to the Block or the Buildings any motor car motor cycle bicycle perambulator or other vehicle belonging to or used by the Lessee or occupier of the demised premises or by any friends servants or visitors of the Lessee and to observe all regulations made by the Lessors or by the Management Company on behalf of the Lessors from time to time relating to the parking of vehicles.

During 2006 the Board held a consultation on the use of the car parking areas in Southwood Hall and Wood lane and issued the following Rules:

i. Lessees must not park more than one vehicle at a time, in the communal car parks.
ii. If a visitor calls for more than an hour, the lessee's car should be removed elsewhere; a visitor's permit must be fetched immediately and displayed.
iii. However, one hour's grace is given for a "short visit", with a note on the dashboard stating the time of arrival and the address of the flat owner being visited.
iv In the event of a real emergency (e.g. illness), the Estate Manager Phil
Sorrell (phil@southwoodhall.co.uk) must be informed to request
a special concession.
v. Contractors' vehicles are not allowed to park, except for 1 hour's grace, to allow for diagnosing a problem, unloading, etc. They must leave a note on the dashboard stating the time at arrival and the address of the flat owner contracting the work.
vi. Parking permits must be displayed in the plastic holder on the front windscreen.
vii. As satisfying demand depends on movement and "fluidity", no car may be parked for more than two months without exiting the Car Park.
viii. Those owning garages on the Estate or nearby are particularly requested to use them rather than put more pressure on scarce spaces in the Car Park.

Regulation issued January 2005 by order of the Board
Not at any time or times do or allow to be done in or upon or with respect to or to any part of the Block the Buildings or the Estate and approaches thereto anything which may annoy or tend to annoy lessees or lawful occupiers of the Block, the Buildings or the Estate or which may injure or tend to injure the character or amenities thereof or which in the opinion of the Lessor or of the Management Company may injure or tend to injure the character or amenity of the Estate as a whole or any part of it.

At the AGM on 12 December 2006 this regulation was rescinded.

Edited Novmber 2007

APPENDIX 1: DETAILED GUIDANCE

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FOR CARRYING OUT WORKS AND ALTERATIONS TO FLATS IN THE SOUTHWOOD HALL ESTATE

 

1. INTRODUCTION
The legal Background
The flats are our homes and we will want to improve them from time to time. However there are constraints imposed by the requirements of The Lease and the 5 Schedules of Regulations. These provide the framework for what individual lessees can/can not do, and determine the powers of the Management Company.

This guidance makes explicit where there is need for consent, the process for seeking it and the nature of the consent required. All reasonable requests should be considered, and approval should be granted so long as the surveyor and Managing Agent recommend to the Board that there is no damage or detriment to the estate, especially to the external fabric, and the planned work will be of a high quality.

This Appendix 1 to the "Southwood Hall Residents Handbook" provides guidance on the works that are permitted within flats without approval, the type of works that require permission and those that require a formal Licence. There is a separate Appendix 2 to provide guidance for the conduct of all contractors carrying out works on the Estate, to help prevent, as far as possible, unnecessary nuisance or annoyance to others living on the Estate.

We thank you for taking time to familiarise yourself with this document. However, should you have any queries, in the first instance please contact the Estate Manager (EM), Phil Sorrell, at phil@southwoodhall.co.uk. For guidance on major alterations, you should contact the Managing Agent (MA), Stephen Ellman, Rendall & Rittner, Gunn Court, 70 Wapping Lane, E1W 2RF, direct phone line:                                                                       020 7481 6773                                   .

2. RULES COVERING ALL WORKS WITHIN FLATS:

2.1 There are some General Conditions which cover any work on the Estate:
a) The contractor must have a current valid public liability insurance certificate. Contractors may be asked to show their certificates.
b) The contractor must be suitably qualified for the required works.
c) Electrical works must be completed by a NICIEC approved contractor and certificate provided on completion.
d) Works to boilers or any gas appliance should be completed by a CORGI approved contractor and certificate provided on completion.
e) Works should not commence until 8.30 am and should finish no later than 5.30 pm Monday to Friday. No works are allowed on weekends or public holidays.

3. WORKS PERMITTED WITHOUT SEEKING APPROVAL FIRST

In general, minor repairs and redecorations do not require approval, including, for example, installing fitted furniture and changing internal doors or woodwork The works should, however, be carried out in accordance with the requirements above. If there are any doubts on whether works require approval advice should be sort from the Estate Manager (EM), who, when necessary, will consult the Managing Agent (MA).

4. WORKS REQUIRING CONSENT

For any other alterations permission must be sought from the MA. Rendall & Rittner. They will confirm whether consent is needed.

Relevant works requiring consent include for example:

Moving or breaking through any walls (load bearing or not)

  • Installing any new internal wall
  • Installing new flooring
  • Refurbishment of bathrooms and kitchens - without moving their location or installing new gas or water piping,
  • Moving kitchens or bathrooms to other areas of the flat
  • Channelling through concrete flooring
  • Substantial changes to plumbing, gas piping or electric cabling
  • Alterations to windows
  • Altering or doing anything that might affect the external appearance of the building.

This list is not exhaustive, but provides some guidance to indicate that changes to your flat can be made, but permission must be sought first. Consent for some alterations (e.g. refurbishments rather than structural changes), can be granted by the MA and Board, without the need for a Licence. Big(ger) alterations will require a formal Licence.

No work must be started until consent has been granted.

5. PROCESS FOR SEEKING APPROVAL

i) Contact the MA, who will advise whether the proposed alteration will require a formal licence.

ii) If no formal licence is needed the MA may be able to give Southwood Hall (SH) consent without delay. The MA will confirm what has been agreed in writing. Details for the timing of the work should then be shared with neighbours, and also discussed with the EM, to prepare him for the arrival of contractors' vehicles etc.

6. THE LICENCE PROCESS:

The MA will discuss the procedure with the lessee. He will also give advice on whether planning approval is also required from Haringey Borough Council.

There are several stages in the SH formal approval process:

6.1 Approval in principle: the MA, having discussed the outline request will seek the advice of the Board. It is within the Board's powers to confirm in principle that the proposed work is acceptable, and a document will need to be signed by both parties to this effect.

6.2 Lessee/ applicant prepares details & drawings:

(a) For any major alterations: Produce 1:50 scaled floor plan drawings of proposed and existing flat layouts showing location and details of:-

  • Sanitary fittings.
  • Drainage pipes.
  • Extractor fan.
  • Radiators.
  • Boilers.
  • Electrical fuse boards.
  • Doors & windows.
  • Kitchen layout.
  • Floor finishes.

(b) Window replacements

Proposed materials (Planning permission from Haringey may be required),
In all applications, details and drawings to demonstrate the works, which are required.

6.3 Detailed Formal Approval: lessee/ applicant submits full details to the property manager at Rendall & Rittner - the detailed plans, including architects plans, surveyors report, Haringey's approval, all as necessary, and agreed timetable

6.4 Rendall & Rittner provide a letter setting out estimated fees and request for initial payment

6.5 Once payment received, Rendall & Rittner inspect and report to the Management Company/the Board.

6.6 The Management Company (the Board) responds; licence issued or alterations suggested to gain approval. On approval a provisional licence of consent is granted and signed by both parties. Once this has been agreed, the plan and work should be shared with neighbours and also discussed with the EM, to prepare him for the arrival of contractors' vehicles etc.

6.7 Works commence and Rendall & Rittner inspect, subject to payment, to approve works on site

6.8 Licence, formal confirmation of the Alterations: this will be issued after inspection of the completed works.

6.9 Licence becomes binding once completion letter is provided by Rendall & Rittner.

This licence is necessary for the future sale of the flat.

APPENDIX 2. DETAILED GUIDANCE FOR CONTRACTORS DOING WORK ON THE SOUTHWOOD HALL ESTATE

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The flats on the Estate are people's homes, not a building site. Owners want to renovate their flats and this will inevitably cause disruption for other residents. The following requirements apply to all works undertaken within the Flats, whether undertaken by the lessee or by a contractor or any other person. This guidance aims to reduce the inconvenience as much as possible, by having a set of reasonable rules for all to follow.

1. There are some General Conditions which cover any work on the Estate, and which the lessee must ensure:
(i)The contractor must have a current valid public liability insurance certificate. Contractors may be asked to show their Certificates.

(ii)The contractor must be suitably qualified for the required works..

(iii) Electrical works must be undertaken by a NICIEC approved contractor and a certificate provided on completion.

(iv) Works to boilers or any gas appliance must be undertaken by a CORGI approved contractor and a certificate provided on completion.

(v) Works must not commence until 8.30 am and should finish no later than
5.30 pm Monday to Friday. No works are allowed at weekends or on public holidays.

2.The Estate Manager (EM) must be informed, at least 7 days in advance, of the commencement of any works so the arrival of contactor's vehicles can be anticipated.

3.Parking for workmen or delivery vehicles on site is only allowed for one hour to enable a site inspection or the delivery of machinery and materials, by temporary permit obtainable by prior arrangement with the Estate Manager (NOTE: issue of permits is limited and as such cannot be guaranteed). Commercial vehicles are not permitted to park within Southwood Hall; the EM will seek to provide advice about local parking possibilities, but parking in this area is difficult.

4.On initial arrival, all contractors are to sign in with the Estate Manager before proceeding into the flat. This will not be necessary for subsequent visits if the flat owner is at home.

5.The Estate Manager will only release keys and provide access to a flat, with prior written authority from the flat holder.

6.Delivery or removal of large items such as furniture should be arranged in advance with the Estate Manager. Whenever possible deliveries or removals should not take place on weekends or public holidays.

7. Contractors are asked to act with consideration for other residents. Building noise is unavoidable, but please try to limit the noise. Loud radios are inconsiderate and please keep the windows shut. It may be necessary, on occasions to ask you not to continue loud noise without some interruption, as it can be enormously upsetting to neighbours.

9. Contractors are expected to show respect to all residents and to the Managing Agent, the Estate Manager and his staff and to comply with all requirements and rules. In the event of any untoward behaviour, effective action will be taken

10. Entrance doors to the flats are to be kept closed at all times.

11. The common parts are not to be used for storage or any other usage other than passage of people and materials

12. Protection to the common parts is to be provided to prevent damage. Dustsheets should always be put down on the stairs and hallways and carpets should be left clean at the end of each day's work. Any damage to the common parts - however minor - to be reported immediately to the Estate Manager.

13. Any trade rubbish is to be bagged up and sealed before leaving the flat and is to be removed by the contractors when leaving the premises.

14. No flammable or hazardous chemicals are to be stored within the property.

15. Smoking is not permitted in any of the common areas.

16.Common Services:

A minimum of 72 hours written notice is to be provided to all residents that will be affected and all supplies must be returned by 5pm on the same day

Edited Novmber 2007