In your own hands

by: Mary-Anne Bowring

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In your own hands

 Flatie and BlockCare 

If you live in a leasehold block of apartments and are frustrated by poor managing agents, with the help of Flatie your worries could be over. The brainchild of Ringley, one of London's top managing agents, Flatie is a fun cartoon character that represents the 4.5 million flat owners throughout England and Wales and has been created to launch an exciting new range of do-it-yourself software Lots of owners of leasehold apartments get very frustrated by the poor service they receive through their managing agents. Many small blocks don't need a managing agent and can do all the work themselves but haven't the knowledge to take it on. That is, until now and the birth of Flatie and BlockCare - a brand new range of software solutions to give leaseholders the essential knowledge they need to manage their own block management, or software to do it, or the option to relieve the burden and get a service charge administrator.

Whether you are buying for the first time buyer or not, Flatie brings to you a wonderful insight into the world of service charges and property management for Free. BlockCare 100 Free This is a free package of information, advice and paperwork, which gives leaseholders the essential knowledge of block management. It includes information on how to change your managing agent; guides on lease extension and right to manage; the rulebook of who should repair what; no win no fee arrears collection; help to deal with noise, big repairs and rule-breakers; budget block buildings insurance;

There is no limit on the size of block that can be run

links to over 200 websites used in the industry; and paperwork to run a freehold or management or right to manage company. BlockCare 200 £175 plus VAT = £210 inc. VAT@20% If leaseholders want to run their own block and at least one person is prepared to take on the responsibility of becoming the block manager even without any prior experience, then this package is the best option. There is no limit on the size of block that can be run and it could save leaseholders 90% of their management costs each year. This is a virtual managing agent that gives information, software and pro-formas needed to run a block efficiently and safely.

It will create demands (with all the statutory notes you need for the demand to be valid); enter payments you make to the cleaner or gardener for example; enter receipts when owners pay their service charge; reconcile bank statements to keep the records straight; automatically produce service charge accounts.

It also has a number of important automatic reminders like when to print the service charge demands and when to run off end of year accounts. BlockCare 300 £525 (exc VAT) = £630 inc VAT@ 20% This is the perfect option for those who want to save money but don't necessarily want the responsibility or have the time available to manage the block themselves. It is often the option taken by blocks where a leaseholder who previously may have taken responsibility for the running of the block wants to sell their property or wants to relinquish their responsibilities. With this option, Ringley themselves become the service charge administrator for the block.

But Ringley takes full responsibility for ensuring that what needs to be done is done on time

They do all the essential administration and run the finances and legal paperwork. The leaseholders are only responsible for setting the budget and deciding what it is spent on, arranging repairs and attending late night residents meetings. But Ringley takes full responsibility for ensuring that what needs to be done is done on time and whilst there are reminders to do things like enter the new service charge budget for example, there are fail safe mechanisms in place in case things go wrong.

So Ringley take all the stress out of running the block and will: Deal with Companies House and any tax queries. Look after the service charge accounts and send out the demands for money from the leaseholders for the service charge. Balance the bank account the block gets free banking. Provide budget planning tools, help with lease problems and offer a step-by-step guide on everything to do with the management of the block. Also on the website there are very useful guides which first time buyers will find invaluable. *A section on the rules and regulations on altering a flat, which covers everything from loft conversions to extra bathrooms.

*Details on the four simple steps to extending a lease. *A ten-step guide on how to deal with noise or nuisance *How to get any major work and redecorations started. *Over 130 factsheets. *The 19 key clauses in the lease you ought to understand or watch out for. If you want to learn more about the Block Care packages and sign your block up for one, you can visit or phone 08708 999595


Lease Extension, FH and Right to Manage

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