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propertylawyer, Solicitor
Category: Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 288
Experience:  Property solicitor with expertise in commercial and residential property transactions.
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I own a 2 bed flat and in a house containing 4 flats which

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I own a 2 bed flat and in a house containing 4 flats which are managed by a company called family mosaic. Their monthly service charge used to be £79 but now it has gone up to £103 per month. That's £1,236 per year which seems high as the property is not in the best condition and we the leaseholders have to pay for the upkeep of the front and back gardens ourselves. The communal areas are not cleaned and over 30 % is collected for a sinking fund. But we have been paying this sinking fund money for years and it just keeps getting collected.
Can you tell me if this is a reasonable charge for such a small block of flats and who can I go to if I want to challenge the amount?

Hi Candy

It is possible to challenge a service charge accounts.

Does the management company send annual statements detailing what services have been undertaken and the cost incurred?

Does you lease allow for a reserve fund?

Are the services specifically set out in your lease!

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
The answer is yes to all of the above.

This may be of interest:

RICS code of practice: Service charge residentialmanagement Code and additional advice to landlords, leaseholders and agents: 3rd edition (June 2016).

If you follow the link you can download a pdf of the rics code.

This is a detailed guide. If you have issues with service charges and feel that the landlord is making charges but not providing adequate services then if can be challenged. A surveyor can assist you with this.

If there is a provision in the lease for a sinking fund then the landlord can demand that you contribute. It does have a benefit in that it will accumulate over time and can then be used to cover items of large expenditure. This avoids large service charge bills.

Please can I kindly request that you accept /positive rate my reply otherwise the website will not pay me for assisting you. Many thanks.

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Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you