Inside your home |  Communal Areas  |  Letting/Selling  | Your Charges

Ask Us – Communal Areas

Keys

Additional Keys and Fobs

Q
How do I get a replacement fob or key?
A

Should you require a replacement fob, key or gate fob to the communal areas please contact MLM Property Management on 020 8492 9850 in order to seek a replacement. Please note there will be an additional charge payable for any additional keys or fobs purchased

Fire Safety

Fire Safety

Q
How do I know what I need to do in the event of a fire?
A

Your building will have a fire action plan that is specifically designed for your building and this will be displayed in the common parts by the main entrances to your development. It will advise you on what to do in the event of a fire. It will either advise you to Evacuate the building or Stay put until the fire rescue services advise differently detailing the mechanism for doing so.
Please get to know what your fire action plan is so that in the event of a fire, you will know what to do.

Q
What can I do to keep our building safe from the spread of a fire?

A

  • Make sure all fire doors remain closed at all times.
  • Don’t leave any items in the common parts.
  • Test your smoke alarms inside your flat regularly.
  • Keep exit routes to your front door clear at all times.
  • Close doors at night, especially your kitchen door.
  • Plan your escape in advance and know your plan well.
Q

What if the fire is inside my flat?

A

If the fire is inside your kitchen, turn off the stove / oven if it is safe to do so.

  • Leave the room where the fire is immediately. Close the door as you go.
  • Alert everyone in your home and get them to leave immediately. Close the front door of your flat behind you.
  • Do not stay behind to put the fire out.
  • Always use the stairway; don’t be tempted to use the lift (if there is one).
  • Do not use a balcony, unless it is a designated escape route from the building.
  • Move quickly to the appointed place of safety. This will be displayed on a notice by the entrance to your apartment building.
  • Be aware of the danger of road traffic when going to and assembling at the designated fire assembly point.
  • If you live in a portered block, advise the porter on duty.
  • At the designated fire assembly point Dial 999 and report the fire to the authorities.
  • When the operator answers, give your telephone number and ask for FIRE.
  • When the fire service reply give the address where the fire is.
  • Do not end the call until the fire service has repeated the address.
  • Do not return to the building until given permission by the Fire and rescue Service.

IF YOU ARE CUT OFF BY FIRE – TRY TO REMAIN CALM

Close the door nearest to the fire. Use wet towel sheets, or other suitable material to block any gaps around the door. This will help stop smoke from entering the room. If possible, go to the window, open it and shout for help. If the room becomes smoke filled, go down to floor level. It will be easier to breathe as the smoke will rise upwards. If you are in immediate danger from fire and are not higher than the first floor of a building, it may be possible to drop to the ground without injury provided you get out of the window feet first and lower yourself to the full extent of your arms before dropping. Soft furnishings dropped first from the window will break your fall and limit the danger of injury.

Q
What if the fire in another part of the building?

A

There are 2 options “Stay Put” or “Evacuate”. Each building will have one or the other policy, but never both. Your buildings policy is posted on the fire action notice at the entrance to your building.

“Stay Put policy”

  • If you are in a corridor, lift, lobby or stairway and you notice a fire, leave the building immediately and go to the appointed place of safety.
  • If you are inside your flat, do not evacuate unless instructed by the Fire and Rescue Service.
  • However, if circumstances are such that you need to leave – get out. Always leave if your flat is affected by smoke or heat or you are told to do so by the fire and rescue service. If you have visitors, instruct them to follow you.
  • Always close all doors behind you.
  • Move quickly to the appointed place of safety. This will be displayed on a notice by the entrance to your apartment building.
  • When the operator answers, give your telephone number and ask for FIRE.
  • When the fire service reply give the address where the fire is.
  • Do not end the call until the fire service has repeated the address correctly. Wait outside, away from the building at the appointed place of safety.
  • Do not put yourself at risk. Do not return to your flat until it is safe to do so and you have been advised it is safe by the fire and rescue services.

“Evacuate policy”

  • If you are in a corridor, lift, lobby or stairway and you notice a fire, leave the building immediately and go to the appointed place of safety.
  • If you are inside your flat, evacuate immediately and quickly to the appointed place of safety. This will be displayed on a notice by the entrance to your apartment building.
  • Always close all doors behind you.
  • At the designated fire assembly point Dial 999 and report the fire to the authorities.
  • When the operator answers, give your telephone number and ask for FIRE.
  • When the fire service reply, give the address where the fire is.
  • Do not end the call until the fire service has repeated the address correctly. Wait outside, away from the building at the appointed place of safety.
  • Do not put yourself at risk. Do not return to your flat until it is safe to do so and you have been advised it is safe by the fire and rescue services.
Items in communal areas

Items left in communal areas

Q
What items can I leave in the common parts?
A

None
Please ensure the communal hallways, grounds, refuse stores, under stairwells, communal riser cupboards (and any other communal areas) remain free from personal belongings and unobstructed at all times.

Q
Why can’t I leave my personal belongings outside my flat or in the communal areas of my development?
A
Personal belongings left in communal areas are:
  • unsightly
  • a trip hazard
  • a potential fire hazard
  • likely to prevent safe
  • evacuation of the building in an emergency
Q
What are regular items found in common parts?
A
These include:
  • bicycles
  • push chairs / prams / buggies
  • shoes
  • door mats
  • plants
  • refuse
  • or ANY other belongings
Please do not store any of these items (or any other personal belongings) in communal areas.
Q
What will happen to items I leave in the communal areas of my development?
A

Any items left in communal areas are liable to be removed without further notice.

Major Works

Major Works

Q
What are ‘major works’?
A

Major works’ is the term used to describe large-scale or substantial building projects that are carried out to keep your development looking good and working correctly. This work is carried out as part of an ongoing maintenance programme and is separate to the day to day routine maintenance and repairs.  These projects exclude works inside your “dismissed premises” – Ie  your apartment.

Major works are usually planned in-advance, but occasionally, major work also includes emergency work that cannot be planned for, such as repairing a major roof leak.

Major works usually include things such as:

  • Maintaining the main structure of the building. For example, looking after the roof and external walls.
  • Maintaining and upgrading items within the building. For example, replacing lifts, upgrading fire alarms, intercom systems, communal heating systems etc.
  • Maintaining the decoration of the building. For example, painting the communal areas and protecting the outside of the building.
Q
How are major works paid for?
A

Each year, home owners pay into a Reserve Fund or Sinking fund (where the lease allows) so that a fund is built up over time to pay for all or a large proportion of the cost of these larger planned repair and maintenance works.

Where your lease does not allow for such a find, the cost of the proposed works are paid for when the works are required to be done and again charged for via the service charge demands made.

You will know if there is a reserve fund or sinking fund being collected by looking at your annual budget and your accounts which detail the amounts being demanded and the amount held at the accounting date.

Q
What if the reserve fund doesn’t cover the cost of the work?
A

If the development’s reserve fund won’t cover the cost of the work, we will write to you requesting an additional contribution to cover the shortfall. We do this as soon as we know what the additional costs are. 

Major works projects vary in cost, but we will always make sure you know how much we are spending. If any home owner needs to contribute more than £250 (which is usually the case), we start a consultation process with all home owners so that you can choose to have involvement in the tendering and contractor selection process involved with the works proposed.

We will make sure everyone knows what is happening, when, and how much it will cost.

Q
How do we communicate with you on major works projects?
A

Major works can be quite a stressful experience due to the sheer scale of the works proposed.  Therefore, regular communication and feedback on all aspects of the job from initial consultation on contractors to organising costs, to updates through the works on progress and how long the works will take to the likely disruption so that planning can take place are very important for you.  We do try to take the inevitable stress out of the projects for you by providing regular communication

The initial consultation is referred to as a ‘Section 20’ consultation. It is derived from the Landlord & Tenant Act 1985 and sets out what we say and the language we used in communication with you which can often seem very formal and legal.

The consultation process has 3 main steps:

1. Notice of Intention (First Notice)

This is the first formal notice of the works you’ll receive.  It explains the works we propose to undertake, and how you can find out more. You can usually find a full description of the works through logging onto Engage. At this stage you can ask any questions, make comments and, if you wish, nominate a contractor this would be the time to do so.

2. Statement and Notice of Estimates (Second Notice)

After the first notice, we make a record of all your comments and ask a range of contractors to send us estimates for the work.

We will then send you a notice of the estimates we’ve received. We will also send you a summary of the comments we’ve had from other home owners together with our responses.

A summary of the estimates can be viewed online and we will invite you to comment on these. We will consider all observations received, before making a decision of which contractor to appoint.

3. Notification of Reasons

If we choose a contractor who isn’t the cheapest, or is a selection made by a recognised Residents’ Association nominee, we will send you a letter explaining why. We will also write to let you know when the contractors will be starting the work.

After the consultation has completed and a contractor chosen, we will write to you to advise of the process of doing the job of works.  Details will include contact information from the contractors, the project plan and approximate timings of things such as access to common areas in your block or building, how long the scaffolding is to be in place if you are doing external works etc.

During this stage of the process, please let us know if you have any concerns or issues regarding access, or the work being carried out so that we can make the contractors aware of this.

If the works are due to take a number of months, you will receive regular updates both from MLM and the contractor.

Once the works are completed, we will check (where possible) that the work has been completed correctly. Payment for this proportion of the work is retained until satisfactory completion is achieved.

Depending on the type of work involved, we will write to you again asking for your comments and if there are any problems we need to fix. We will pass any comments or problems on to the contractor and make sure they rectify any issues.

Parking

Parking

Q
My development has a car park. What do I need to know about using it?
A

If your development has a car park, please use it fairly and in accordance with your developments car park rules.

There may be a permit scheme in place and if so, there will be appropriate signage in place to advise you of what you need to be aware of.

If in doubt, please contact MLM Property.

Refuse

Refuse, bulky waste and re-cycling

Q
Where do I dispose of refuse/rubbish/re-cycling?
A

Your development will have refuse areas and facilities for the disposal of household and recycling waste.

Please make sure that all refuse is disposed of only inside the bins provided.

Please do not leave rubbish bags on the floor of bin store as this attracts pests and vermin.

Q
Can I leave rubbish bags outside my flat front door?
A

No.
Neither household waste or recycling should be left in the communal areas outside your flat at any time.

Q
How do I dispose of bulky items?
A
If you need to dispose of non-household waste or bulky waste such as TV packaging, old electrical equipment of furniture, please contact the local waste disposal authority who will arrange to pick up such waste – do not dump this at your development. Any caught offenders will be recharged the cost of removal of dumped items.
Repairs

Repairs and maintenance

Q
What should I do if I notice a fault in the common parts?
A

If you notice any faults to the communal areas of the development, please contact MLM and report this.

We can then review and record the fault and appoint an appropriate contractor to undertake remedial works as soon as possible.

Security

Security

Q
How can I help to keep my development secure?
A

Please note the following security measures:

  • Do not allow strangers into the building.
  • If your development has a car park gate, do not allow unknown people or cars to follow you through the car park gates.
  • Ask callers to the building and your property, for identification if you are not sure.
  • Do not leave the communal doors unlocked, even if, for example, you are just popping to the refuse store.
  • Please ensure all communal doors, gates, etc. have closed securely behind you.
  • Please make sure your property is suitably secured when leaving it.
  • Do not leave personal items on display in your car, balcony or even your flat (especially if on ground floor).
  • Call the police should you see or hear anything suspicious.
  • If you note any of the communal doors, locks, gates etc. are not working correctly please contact MLM immediately.
  • Ensure that other lockable areas within your development such as bicycle stores or bin stores remain locked at all times.
  • Be vigilant about security.
Smoking

Smoking

Q
Can I smoke in the communal areas of my development?
A

Smoking in the communal areas of your development is a criminal offence, and cigarette butts must not be thrown out of windows or over balconies. Legal action will be taken against anyone found to be smoking in the communal areas.