Your service charge
Your annual service charge bill pays for the services we provide to your building and/or estate. The general terms of the lease sets out what we can (and can't) charge for, and how your share of the charge is worked out. The cost of building insurance (for the shared areas, structure and outside only) is also included in your service charge bill.
Every April, you will receive a service charge bill for the coming financial year (1 April to 31 March), this is based on the amount we estimate will be spent. The bill breaks down how much you pay for each service, giving both your share of the cost and the total cost for your building and estate.
When we're preparing the service charge bills, we look at the amount we spent in previous years and the budget for the service in the coming year. We try to make your service charge bill as accurate as possible to lessen the difference that will be included in the next year’s bill.
The cost of day-to-day repairs is the most difficult charge to estimate and often the cause of large costs at the end of the year. Under the terms of your lease, service charges are due for payment within 21 days of you receiving the invoice.
By October each year you will receive a statement of the actual costs. This tells you the actual amount spent on each service. We will work out the difference between the amount we charged you at the beginning of the year and the amount that we actually spent during the year. We then include this difference in April’s service charge bill so you only pay the amount it has cost to provide the services.
Your service charge bill
We’ve redesigned the format to help you navigate the bill more easily and find key information.
Paying your service charge bill
Under the terms of your lease you should pay the bill within 21 days of the date you receive it. If you can't afford to pay the bill in one lump sum, you can arrange to pay by up to 10 monthly instalments. It's important that you contact Home Ownership Services to agree your payment plan or complete the payment options form.
Check your balance by text
Text BAL or BALANCE followed by a space and your account reference to 07984440585.
For example ‘BAL 1234567890’
To use this service, we must have your correct mobile number on our system. You can update it on the housing services portal.
Texts will be charged at your standard message rate.
Over the phone
Call 0800 028 2 028 or call our 24 hour automated card payment service on 020 8690 8707. You will need your 10-digit service charge account number.
You can pay at PayPoint outlets (local stores and garages where you see the PayPoint sign) or any Post Office, using your plastic service charge payment card. If you have lost your card or have not received a card, please request one online.
If you don’t pay
We take non-payment of service charges seriously and will take action if you don’t pay.
It's a condition of your lease that you pay for the services that you receive. It helps pay for the services we deliver to council buildings and estates.
If your service charge account is in arrears you'll be contacted by letter and possibly by phone, email or text. We will also contact your mortgage lender, if you have one, about the debt.
To avoid this happening, please pay on time - or contact us to agree a payment plan at HOS@lewisham.gov.uk.
Difficulties in paying your service charge
If you're having difficulties paying your service charge, contact us immediately by email HOS@lewisham.gov.uk.
Service Charge Policy