June 17, 2024

Pravda alive and well on the websites of LEASE, ARMA and Peverel … who ALL support the OFT inquiry into leasehold

pravdaNot since the Soviet Union went out of business have we seen such clottish attempts to spin a positive line.

It started with our old friends at the Leasehold Advisory Service deciding that the key point in Sir Peter Bottomley’s speech to leaseholders in London on November 12 was a passing polite reference to … LEASE itself.

“MP praises LEASE’s service” was the headline, with not a single reference to the criticisms Sir Peter raised regarding criminal behaviour, price-fixing cartels, cheating freeholders, exit fee fiddles, opportunist lawyers playing the system and feeble judicial intervention.

For those who need reminding what Sir Peter DID say, the full speech can be viewed here.

On Tuesday came the announcement that the Office of Fair Trading was launching a full investigation into leasehold management.

It must have been a nasty surprise for Michelle Banks, the chief executive of the Association of Residential Managing Agents, who can usually rely on being tipped off about these issues by her former colleagues at the DCLG.

Fortunately this inquiry originates from the leaseholders themselves, backed by Sir Peter Bottomley and Ed Davey. And now with enthusiastic backing from Labour MP Jim Fitzpatrick as well.

It all seemed to be going so swimmingly for ARMA.

It has never made a public squeak about the crookedness at the heart of leasehold – as so many of the worst offenders are leading members – and whatever regulation was in offing – if the politicians could ever get round to it – would be entrusted to Michelle.

Now the OFT is involved and ARMA has been completely side-lined.

Michelle made the best of it, however, waving her Band Aid about the ethical scheme ARMA-Q and repeating the nonsense that the worst offenders are not ARMA members.

“This is a welcome announcement from the OFT which should promote the need for consistently high standards across the residential leasehold management sector,” she says on her website.

But best of all is Peverel’s hilarious response to the OFT inquiry.

That’s the inquiry into leasehold management, not the one into its own shameful price-fixing cartel, which reports tomorrow.

Peverel, an important bankroller of ARMA which admits running a bogus tendering operation that scammed thousands of residents in leasehold retirement, states:

“With more than 30 years of experience in the industry, Peverel Group looks forward to contributing to the OFT’s study to ensure that the market is working well for leaseholders.”

Not since Mr Murdstone sent David Copperfield into the blacking factory to complete his education has there been a more stomach-turning display of hypocrisy.



  1. Leasehold Advisory Service (LEASE) are a disgrace and Michelle Banks or who ever spins these facts should be named and shamed?

    Organisation like ARMA are an umbrella company that is paid for by the members who work in its own industry as it stands for the Association of Residential Managing Agents and its role is to promote the industry.

    The Managing Agents pay a subscription each year to be a member and it looks good on their CV that they are a member. It is not there for our benefit but fights the corner for Managing Agent when they step out of line.

    That is what we are informed that we benefit from the control by these organisation, but in practice they are of little use to us, and as one can see from the spin, they are in deep trouble, as they keep digging holes.

    We do not mind that ARMA has been side-lined as the OFT has been involved over the past 4 years, in the Price Fixing Scandal which has cost over £500,000.00 and is likely to allow Peverel Retirement and Peverel Services Ltd along with the 15 other subsidiaries and the other 5 sister companies who are part of Meridian Retirement Housing Services Ltd our Landlord and obviously a Peverel Group Company.

    Have we been conned by the authorities and will pay the £500,000 as Tax Payers to allow Peverel Group to walk away scot free?????

  2. Sebastian/Martin,
    I have received an email from Peter B where he says that you both are remarkable???
    I find the remarks as a total acceptance of the value you have both brought to the need for Leasehold Reform.
    Thank you both.

  3. Chas,

    If your block is a victim of this Price Fixing Scandal, send a complaint letter together with your evidence to SFO and Companies House asking for the 2009 Directors to be disqualified.

    Then pass a sample of your “complaint letter” to Campaign against retirement leasehold exploitation to use as a form for other blocks to make similar complaints.

  4. Michael Epstein says

    It is worth a try, but if your block had fallen victim to the Price Fixing Scandal, you should make a claim against Peverel for the entire amount. After all, Price Fixing is Fraud and Peverel have insurance to cover themselves against fraud don’t they?