Recognised Tenants’ Association (RTA)
A tenants’ or residents’ association is a group of owners of leasehold property on the same development who hold similar leases from the same landlord which include provisions for the payment of variable service charges. Collectively an association represents the views of its members. To be effective, formal recognition is required, either directly from the landlord in writing, or by applying to the First Tier Tribunal if the landlord is not willing or ignores the association’s request for recognition.
A certificate of recognition gives the association the legal right to:
- Request information about service charge costs from the landlord, including accounts and receipts
- Be consulted on the appointment of a managing agent
- Be notified by the landlord of proposed major works and receive copies of estimates
- Nominate contractors to carry out the works, which the landlord must consider
- Appoint a surveyor for the purposes of a management audit
There are certain conditions and criteria which must be satisfied in order for an FTT to grant a certificate of recognition. Generally, members must be paying a variable service charge to the landlord to qualify as a recognised member, and membership should not be less than 60% of those qualifying for the scheme. However, a recent Upper Tribunal decision also took into account the percentage of overall variable service charges paid by the Associations members.