So, what does the shared ownership service charge cover? Shared Ownership properties usually have a service charge which you must typically pay monthly. This fee covers the maintenance of a property and it’s surrounding area.
Is there a service charge in a shared ownership apartment?
There is almost always a service charge with a shared ownership property, but the property you have can determine what your service charge is used for.
If you have a flat, this fee normally covers the maintenance of communal areas such as gardens, hallways, and stairwells. It also covers the costs of repairs that need to be done in these areas such as lighting, entry systems and also the cleaning of the facilities. They usually also cover the fee of the management of the accommodations and if there are any members of security that look after these properties.
Therefore, service charges are usually higher in communal buildings such as flats or apartments.
What does the service charge in a shared ownership house cover?
Service charges tend to be lower in individual homes as there are no communal areas for the provider to upkeep so the cost is kept lower. If you live in a home that has communal facilities such as a car park or gates, your service charge will contribute to these.
You should check your lease to see what this service charge covers, as each provider differs.
How much is a shared ownership service charge?
As previously discussed, the price of the shared ownership service charge will differ due to many factors. These factors include; the type of property, the amount of communal areas and the housing provider. You may have bought 25% share of a property, but you will still have to pay 100% of the service charge
What happens if I cannot afford to pay my service charge?
You should check that this is something that you can afford before you choose a Shared Ownership property. These can be seen as hidden costs that you don’t consider when buying a shared ownership property. You should consider the finances you would already be paying such as rent, mortgage, bills etc before you commit to buying through shared ownership. However, if you have already bought a shared ownership house and could struggle to make these payments, you should contact your housing provider immediately to see what they can do to help.
You can find out more about what shared ownership is and how it works by visiting our blog
How is the service charge paid?
Usually, the service charge fee will be paid alongside your rent monthly. You should ask your housing provider how they accept your payments and should then set up the appropriate method. Your service charge may increase or decrease over time due to changes which the provider may make. They should contact you regarding this in advance if this is the case.
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