Service charge and ground rent

We are responsible for the upkeep of the structure, exterior and communal parts of your flat or maisonette block and for providing services.

As a leaseholder, you pay a share towards the cost of these services, called a service charge.

Service charge

Your service charge is in 2 parts:

  • basic
  • specific

The basic charge is for items such as:

  • building insurance
  • amenity cleansing (cleaning gullies)
  • door entry management
  • ground maintenance
  • management costs

The specific charge is for items to your block such as:

  • communal lighting
  • cleaning and caretaking
  • repairs and maintenance
  • heating systems
  • lift maintenance

The way we calculate your service charges is set out in your lease. For details of charges for larger works, look at our major works page.

You will receive a breakdown of the service charges for your property before each financial year, which starts on 1 April.

As these are produced at the start of the year we will not know the exact costs for every item and will supply estimated costs based on the previous year’s charges.

When we close our accounts at the end of the financial year, we will work out the actual costs. You will be given these figures in a statement by the end of the following September.

As the estimate is usually different from the actual amount spent, the balance of any over or under charge will be adjusted on your next bill, the following April.

If more is spent than estimated, you will get an increase in your bill and if less is spent, you will get a reduction.

Pay your service charge

You will receive an estimated service charge bill in March or soon after the initial grant of your lease.

You can pay by:

  • Direct Debit - by filling out our service charge Direct Debit form (pdf)
  • online - using credit or debit card
  • phone - using our automated telephone payment 01279 44660 or call a Home Ownership Income Officer on 01279 446206
  • standing order
  • in person - using cash, card or cheque at the Civic Centre

Ground rent

All council leaseholders have to pay an annual ground rent of £10.