London Borough of Croydon

Major works consultation

You will be consulted about planned repairs where the estimated cost is over £250 per leaseholder. This is your legal right and is called 'Section 20 Consultation'. If the works are urgent and cannot be delayed we may have to carry them out without consulting with the residents beforehand.

In the consultation, leaseholders are sent letters which give:

  • Letter 1 - Notice of Intent. Details of work to be carried out. You are given 30 days consultation.
  • Letter 2 - Section 20 Notice. Details of the two lowest quotes received and an estimate of the size of the individual leaseholder's contribution. You are given a further 30 days consultation.

Leaseholders then have time to make comments during the consultation process. The council must seriously consider these comments and work can only start once this process has been completed.

If a lot of work is being planned, we will meet with residents and recognised residents' associations before the Section 20 Consultation process begins.

Can I have a say in what work is done to my home?

How to take part in consultation about major works and improvements to your home and the area where you live.

Planned work on the building

  • We will involve you as much as possible in planning the major repair and improvement programme.
  • Our proposed programme each year will be based on the repair and improvement needs of the buildings and the budget available to complete the work.
  • We work with resident representatives from the district panels to agree a five year plan, and a more detailed programme of work each year.

Contact the service charge team for information about the five year plan in your area.

Who carries out the work?

How is a contractor chosen?

Approved contractors
We are required to work only with contractors on our approved contractor list. To be approved, contractors must meet our standards for experience, financial stability and quality and have approved health and safety, employment and equality policies.

Recommended contractors
Residents can recommend a contractor but they must meet these standards before they are added to the approved contractor list. Commercial contractors cannot have any connection with our staff.

Work tenders
Competitive tenders are required for major works. We will usually choose the one quoting the lowest price. If we do not do so, we will explain why.

Leaseholders can make an appointment to look at the specification details and the tenders received for any major works contracts that affect them. Please contact the service charges team to make an appointment.

Raising queries during major works

Who to contact if there are any questions or problems once the contractor has started working in your building.

A supervising officer is in charge of each contract. This may be either a council officer or an outside consultant. When the work starts, all affected leaseholders are told who this is and how he or she may be contacted. Keep this information safely in case you need it during the work.

We will let you know how the work is going and if there are any changes to the plans or the timetable.

If you see a problem, you should let the supervising officer know immediately, and if possible while the contractor is still on site. It is more difficult to solve problems after the contractor has left the site, and especially after the defects period has come to an end.  The defects period is normally 12 months after the work has been completed.

Section 20 consultation

Your rights to be consulted about major works and improvements to your property

What is a Section 20 Notice?

We must tell you in advance if we want to carry out any major works, exterior decorations or improvements to your block of flats or estate. The notice will give details of the planned work and estimated costs. It also gives you a chance to tell us your views on the planned work. The notice is called 'Section 20' because the legal process and requirements are set out in Section 20 of the Landlord & Tenant Act 1985.

What are the main changes under the Reform Act 2002?

The Commonhold & Leasehold Reform Act (2002) has brought in new regulations which apply to all works tendered after the 31 October 2003.

The main changes are:

  • The council has to consult with you about any works where you are likely to be charged more than £250.
  • The landlord has to send two separate Section 20 Notices and sometimes a third. This means the consultation period has been greatly increased.
  • Leaseholders have a right to propose a person or contractor to do the works.

What are the three Section 20 Notices?

The first Section 20 Notice - Notice of Intent

  • gives you a description of the works;
  • tells you why the works are needed;
  • tells you that you have a right to give your views within 30 days;
  • tells you that you have a right to nominate a contractor within 30 days.

How do I nominate a contractor?

If you have a contractor you wish to nominate, send the name and address in writing to the Service Charges Manager, Housing Department, Bernard Weatherill House, 8 Mint Walk, Croydon CR0 1EA.

What will happen if I nominate a contractor to do the works?

We will write to the contractor asking if they wish to tender for the works. We will write to you to acknowledge receipt of your letter. You will be informed of the results of the tendering in the Second Section 20 Notice.

What will the council do if they receive more than one nominated contractor?

If only one leaseholder nominates a contractor, we must try to get an estimate from that contractor. If nominations are received from more than one leaseholder, we must try to obtain one estimate from a nominated contractor as follows:

  • if there is one contractor who receives the most nominations then we must try to obtain an estimate from them
  • if more than one contractor receives a number of nominations and there is a tie, then one of those contractors must be selected
  • if each contractor receives only one nomination, the council will invite one of them to give an estimate for the work.

What will happen if I make any comments on the planned works?

We will carefully consider any comments or suggestions regarding the works that are sent in writing. We will give you a written response, with reasons for the decisions we take where appropriate. The second Section 20 Notice will include a summary of all the comments we received, and our responses to them.

The second Section 20 Notice - Notification of Estimates

  • gives you at least two of the estimates, with the estimated cost of the proposed works
  • gives you a summary of any comments from leaseholders received within 30 days and our responses to them
  • tells you that you may inspect all the estimates if you wish, but you will need to make an appointment
  • tells you that you may make observations in writing about the estimates within 30 days.

Does the council have to award the contract to the lowest tender?

Generally the council chooses the lowest tender. However, if the lowest tender is not acceptable and a tender from a nominated contractor is not chosen, then we will give you the reason for the decision in a third Section 20 Notice.

The third Section 20 Notice - Award of Tender:

  • contains the name of the contractor who has been awarded the tender.

If the lowest tender or a tender from a nominated contractor is not chosen the letter will contain:

  • a statement containing the reasons why the decision to award the contract was made
  • a summary of leaseholders observations and the responses we have made to them, or a place where they may be inspected.

For more information contact the service charge team.

Contacts

People Department

Telephone: 
020 8726 6100
Fax: 
020 8760 5745
Address Line:

Bernard Weatherill House

3rd Floor

8 Mint Walk

Croydon

CR0 1EA

Leasehold services team

Telephone: 
020 8726 6100 extn 65480
Address Line:

People Department

Floor 3, Zone B

Bernard Weatherill House

8 Mint Walk

Croydon

CR0 1EA

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