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Hello All,


My query is about the Service charge. I am leaseholder of a 3 bed flat in a purpose build block in London (Westminster)

our service charge used to reflect the maintenance of the building and overall look and feel. But now not only service charge goes up every year but quality of service like general maintenance gone down. For example lifts keep breaking down, building needs refurb, walls are dirty, my windows are so old that in winter no matter how much heating you put on room still feel cold. 

additionally they keep adding major works charges to service charge with this year being £1917 in addition to £1890 service charge. Don’t mind paying only if I see improvement in the block but we have only seen steady decline over many years now. So today I called them (city of Westminster) saying I don’t want to pay and cannot pay so high charges where there’s no evident results. 

I came here to find if anyone has been successful in negotiations on regards to service charges complain or any advice regarding this. Charges are too for what we get 


Thanks in advance


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Is there any committee of leaseholders set up ?  Residents association  ?


If not, then see if others are interested, by posting a note through doors about the service charge issues and would residents like to join a group to discuss. 


Ask City of Westminster for service charge and maintenance fund accounts showing itemised costs of everything for the current year and previous say 2 years. Then you can see over a 3 year period how different costs have changed.


I think you need to register a complaint in writing to City of Westminster regarding the deterioration of the buildings and tell them what you think needs to be done. Ask what schedule of works they have planned to improve the building conditions.

We could do with some help from you.



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I agree with the above post.


Could you clarify is your building a mix of council & leaseholders or leaseholders only?


The Major Works Charges you mention they have added you are entitled to ask them for clarification on exactly what these works are, when they are going to be carried out, by which company and for a breakdown of their costs for these Major Works.


As you mention as an example your windows you need to have a good read of your Leasehold Agreement to see who is responsible for what maintenance. As an example only your leasehold may have a clause that the leaseholder is responsible for the maintenance of the windows again eample only so have a good read of your lease.


If their are other Leaseholders as mentioned in a previous post it may be worth talking to other leaseholders about setting up a Residents Association as this would be another way to challenge the Management Company as long as they recognise your Residents Association.


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I advise to the best of my ability, but I am not a qualified professional, benefits lawyer nor Welfare Rights Adviser.

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Thanks for the reply,


Mix of council tenants and leaseholders like me who has a mortgage on it. 


I spoke to their office but they won’t allow me what I can afford to pay monthly around (£60) but asking for 12 months plan. And total for all service charge and major works is just about £6000. I didn’t pay last year service charge so that’s two this time

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