Service charges

Your service charges explained…

Many customers currently pay a charge in addition to rent which covers communal services like cleaning and grounds maintenance. We understand that the quality and cost of these services is important to customers. Some of our customers will see changes in their service charges from the beginning of April. Whilst inflation has eased, housing associations and businesses continue to operate in a challenging economic environment.

Although costs for utilities have reduced this year, which is reflected in service charges, gas and electricity prices remain high compared to previous years. External pressures also mean that the cost of delivering essential services such as grounds maintenance and provision of fire safety equipment has increased.

Last year, we brought our grounds maintenance services inhouse to protect customers from escalating contractor costs. Costs for delivering these services have increased due to external factors, however these are less than if we had continued to use external contractors. Our Environmental Services Team are now also delivering services such as tree inspections, fly-tipping collection and gritting, which will be reflected in service charges.

Increases to service charges will vary across different schemes depending on the services that are provided. Last year we applied a cap for 12 months to service charges to protect customers from significant energy price rises. This year, we will also apply a service charge cap for our general let and housing for older people customers to protect those facing the potential for highest charges.

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Our dedicated Financial Inclusion Team is also here to help any customers that are worried about their finances. The team offers free, confidential advice around income, budgeting, and financial support that might be available, so please get in touch by calling 0300 555 0600 or emailing

Frequently asked questions

What is a service charge?

Your service charge covers the cost of services provided to your scheme, neighbourhood and personal charges in relation to your home. Service charges cover things like communal utilities (i.e., gas, electricity and water) and scheme managers.

How is my charge calculated?

The charge is calculated annually based on the cost of services for the previous year and estimated costs for the coming year. Charges are shared equally between customers living in the same building who benefit from the services, so you only pay for the services you get.

What items are chargeable?

Every type of service we can charge via service charges are listed below, with an explanation of what they cover. Not all of the services listed are necessarily provided where you live, so where you do not receive a service, it will not be included in your charge. You will only pay for the services you are provided with.

Why does my neighbour pay a different amount to me?

You only pay for the services that you use whether direct to your house or in the area that you live. There may be rare circumstances where a neighbour pays a different amount. An example of this might be where you pay for the maintenance of a communal garden, but your neighbour has their own garden.

Will Housing Benefit or Universal Credit cover the increase in service charges?

If you receive Housing Benefit or Universal Credit, the majority of your service charges will be covered apart from individual charges. More information about individual charges is included in the table in this document. If you’re unsure please contact


What if I can’t afford the changes to my service charge?

If you are worried about your service charges, please contact our Financial Inclusion Team. We can offer support to help with your finances or support in helping you find employment, so please get in touch.