Legal Q&A: Our solicitor has asked for £350 to pay for a “management pack” - what is this?

We are selling our flat and our solicitor has asked for £350 to pay for a “management pack”. What is this and do we need it?
Question: We bought our flat off-plan three years ago and are now selling it. We’ve accepted an offer and our solicitor is getting the contract papers ready. He has asked us to let him have £350 to pay for a “management pack”. What is that?
 
Answer:
When selling a leasehold property, the seller should provide protocol forms, such as the Fittings and Contents Form, Property Information Form and Leasehold Information Form. The seller should also provide a completed Leasehold Property Enquiry form, which must be completed by the freeholder/landlord/managing agents. They usually charge a fee for answering such enquiries and many of them will often provide what they term a management pack or seller’s pack.
 
This is because if they are looking after several flats in a building, each time a flat is sold they will be asked to produce basically the same information — so it is easier for them to have a standard pack containing documents such as the asbestos survey, fire risk assessment, the last three years’ filed accounts and buildings insurance policy.
 
The pack will also include specific information relevant to each individual apartment. The cost of a management pack can vary hugely and some managing agents charge many hundreds of pounds for one.
 
The buyer’s solicitor — and also any lender the buyer may have — will require the information contained in the management pack, so you have little choice but to provide it.
 


What's your problem?
If you have a question for Fiona McNulty, please email legalsolutions@standard.co.uk or write to Legal Solutions, Homes & Property, London Evening Standard, 2 Derry Street, W8 5EE. We regret that questions cannot be answered individually but we will try to feature them here. Fiona is legal director in the real estate group of Foot Anstey LLP in Exeter (fionamcnulty@footanstey.com)
 
These answers can only be a very brief commentary on the issues raised and should not be relied on as legal advice. No liability is accepted for such reliance. If you have similar issues, you should obtain advice from a solicitor.

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