The Leasehold Advisory Service has finally decided to bar controversial managing agent Benjamin Mire from advertising on the LEASE website.
The decision was announced today and applies to Benjamin Mire’s companies Trust Property Management and Benjamin Mire Chartered Surveyors.
Mire, a property manager based in Colindale, north London, resigned from his judicial appointment to the property tribunal during an investigation last summer.
In an exceptional move, the Ministry of Justice made clear that Mire would have been sacked in any case. He had
‘failed to observe the standards that could reasonably be expected of a judicial office holder and that this failing was sufficiently serious to justify his removal from office’.
LEASE’s decision to dump Mire comes in the form of an appeal by Sir Peter Bottomley to a decision by LEASE in April to continue to take Mire’s advertising.
On April 23, Anthony Essien informed LKP / Campaign against retirement leasehold exploitation that “it was concluded that Trust Property Management had complied with the applicable terms and conditions” of Lease Conferences Ltd, the commercial arm of the quango. Therefore his advertising would stay.
But today LEASE chairman Deep Sagar has reversed that decision.
He does so on the basis of information long available to LEASE, and repeatedly referred to on this website.
Sagar refers to the statement from the Judicial Conduct Investigations Office (above) and to “34 different determinations by the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal purportedly involving Mr Mire, TPM or BMCS”.
“By an expert review on my behalf of the determinations and representations, I have concluded that 24 determinations have clear and recent conclusions of poor professional practice.
“Thus LEASE Conferences Limited should not knowingly offer its platform to these firms, as its objectives are to improve professional standards and service consumers, including leaseholders.”
LEASE’s decision is a volte face of its previous position over the issue, which surfaced in November last year when it was made clear that Mr Mire was to have been sacked from his judicial appointment.
At the time, Trust Property Management was up for four property management awards organised by the insiders’ trade magazine News on the Block. It did not win.
In May the issue became the subject of a parliamentary question and housing minister Kris Hopkins stated that “the practitioner list is not meant to be a fully comprehensive list, nor does inclusion constitute a recommendation by LEASE”.
When LEASE first turned down dropping Mire, Anthony Essien said new terms and conditions would be binding on advertisers in the professional directory.
These would apply when contracts came up for renewal: those concerning Trust Property Management required renewal this month.
But rather than drop Mire quietly with a bureaucratic manoeuvre, LEASE has instead chosen publicly to remove the managing agent.