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Service charges

Service charges cover the services we provide to look after the areas of the building or estate we're responsible for.

They can include the cost of gardening, cleaning and lighting for the areas you share with your neighbours. It also includes the costs incurred in maintaining your building. In some cases, it covers communal gas or water charges.

Reviewing your service charge

Every year we provide you with an estimated service charge for the coming year. We estimate the cost of providing the day-to-day services, and any major repairs or communal redecoration that is planned for the year, and will charge you for your proportion of this.

Your service charge might include services we deliver, like gardening, cleaning or communal repairs. We review these contracts regularly for quality and value. All our contractors have insurance and follow health and safety policies.

Your lease or transfer deed will set out what services we provide, what we can spend your service charge on and what share we’ll invoice to you.

You may also pay a fee to cover our costs for managing these services. This might include:

  • issuing annual statements, paying invoices and dealing with enquiries
  • staff costs
  • appointing contractors
  • monitoring standards and health and safety regulations
  • general administration and business costs.

Checking how we use your service charge

You’ll get an annual account statement so you can see how much we collect and how it’s spent.

For some leases we include an accountancy fee as part of your service charge. This pays for a review of your service charge account by regulated accountants. They’re independent and will make sure the accounts are fair and well managed.

Once we have prepared your annual statement, if we’ve spent less than what was originally estimated, we’ll credit any surplus money back to you. If we’ve spent more than estimated, we’ll invoice you for a share of this amount.

If you have any questions about your service charge, please contact us.

Unhappy with your service charge?

We do our best to make sure our service charges are good value. If you have any queries, please contact us.

The Leasehold Advisory Service offers independent, free advice to leaseholders and shared owners. You can call them on 020 7832 2500 or visit www.lease-advice.org