Depending on the type of home you own you could pay rent, service charges, reserve or sinking fund contributions, and management or administration fees.

If you wish to make a payment to us, go to the My home page. 

Rent 

Although you are a homeowner, you may have to pay rent. 

Shared ownership rent

Shared ownership rent is initially set when the property is first built or acquired by us and is then reviewed annually using a formula set in the shared ownership lease. This formula usually uses the Retail Price Index (RPI) as the basis for the annual change to your rent. 

If you purchase additional shares in your home, called staircasing, your rent will reduce in proportion to the amount you purchase. Read more about staircasing.

Ground rent

Ground rent is usually paid every year by leaseholders. Your lease will say whether or not you need to pay ground rent. If it is payable, we will send you a payment request every year. Ground rent is collected separately from your other service charges. 

Service charges

You will need to pay a service charge if we provide services or carry out maintenance to your building or estate. It is normally paid every month along with any other payments you make to us. Depending on your legal agreement with us you might pay quarterly or yearly instead of monthly. 

Your lease or freehold transfer will give details about what we are responsible for doing and what you are responsible for paying for. It will also say what proportion of costs you are responsible for and how this is payable to us.

What is included in the service charge?

You need to check what your lease or freehold transfer document says. Below are some of the most common things that may be included in service charges although this will vary depending on where you live.

  • Cleaning communal areas such as shared corridors and stairways.
  • Gardening or grounds maintenance to communal outside areas.
  • Maintenance and servicing of door entry systems, fire alarms, and lifts.
  • Electricity for lighting in communal areas and other electrical services.
  • Minor day to day repairs needed in communal areas or to the main structure of blocks of flats.
  • Staff employed to provide services where you live, such as scheme managers

How is the service charge set?

We usually set service charges by estimating the total cost of providing services and maintenance for the year. At the end of the year, we check if the amount we spent was more or less than the amount we estimated. If we spent more than the budget we normally recover the shortfall through your service charge the following year. If we spent less than the budget we normally credit this amount to the service charge the following year.

What proportion of costs for communal services do I pay?

If you are a leaseholder, your lease may allow us to share out the total cost to leaseholders by any method we consider reasonable. This is supported by legislation that requires landlords to set charges in a reasonable manner. Alternatively, the lease may specify a particular method of payment, for example dividing the charge by the number of flats (and houses) in a block (or estate).

Your lease, freehold or legal agreement sets out how we divide up charges between flats or houses.

Buildings insurance

If we provide buildings insurance for your home or building you pay this as part of your monthly charge to us. You can find more information about buildings insurance here.

Sinking funds 

Sinking funds (sometimes called reserve funds) are charged in order to build up funds to pay for major or planned works. Your lease or freehold transfer will say if you need to pay into a sinking fund.

What are sinking funds used for?

The most common types of work that sinking funds are put towards are:

  • Decoration of internal and external communal areas.
  • Repairs or replacement of a roof, communal windows, and doors.
  • Replacement or refurbishment of door entry systems, fire alarms or lifts.
  • Planned external repairs to the building.
  • Improvements to communal areas and parking areas.

Sinking funds are not usually used to cover the cost of minor day or day responsive repairs. These costs are paid through your service charge each year. 

Before we carry out major works we will usually carry out formal consultation with you. This is called Section 20 Consultation and more information can be found on our Section 20 Consultation page.

What happens to the fund if I sell my home?

Money paid into the sinking or reserve fund stays in the fund when a property is sold. It is not refunded to the person selling. The fund can be a positive factor when selling, as there is some money set aside for future works. 

What happens if there is not enough money in the sinking fund to pay for works?

If the balance in your sinking fund does not fully cover the cost of the works, we will issue you an invoice for the shortfall. If you are unable to afford to pay in full immediately, we may be able to agree to pay over an extended period of time. Contact us to find out more.

What if I plan to sell my home before the works are complete or billed?

During your sale, your solicitor will normally ask us for details on outstanding works or payments, as well as changes to any contracts. We will disclose this information so that your buyer is aware of anything that may affect them. We expect any financial negotiations to be made between your solicitor and your buyer’s solicitor. 

Management and administration fees

Depending on the services you receive from us you may pay:

A management fee

Management fees cover the expensed of: 
•    Property management services for your building and estate. 
•    Arranging buildings insurance.
•    Providing public liability insurance.
•    Managing accounts.
•    Staffing and office costs. 
•    Complying with Homes England regulations. 

An administration charge

An administration charge is based on a percentage of the cost the works or services provided. It covers the cost of us: 
•    Arranging and managing works.
•    Setting up and managing contracts.
•    Consulting with residents.
•    Setting up and monitoring contracts.
•    Managing works and contractors.
•    Processing invoices.

A fee for additional services

Sometimes you may have a request which we will charge you for, as it is not covered by the management fee or administration charge. See our Administration Fees to see what this could include.