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Financial Matters

  • Service Charges - What are they?
    What are service charges?

    Your service charge is the money you pay towards the day-to-day running costs of your block or estate.

    Your service charges can include things like:

    • Lift maintenance
    • Digital TV aerial
    • Communal lighting / cleaning / door entry systems
    • Caretaking services for cleaning, car park and drying areas
    • Grounds maintenance
    • Repair and maintenance work (including major works if applicable) buildings insurance
    • Administration costs and any other running costs of your block or 

    We will carry out regular maintenance to make sure that your home is in a good state of repair and the cost of the maintenance will form part of your service charge.




  • Management and administration charges

    We try to minimise our management and administration charges as far as possible. They cover the following costs and tasks:

    • Providing a leasehold management
    • Service charge calculation
    • Collecting and accounting for service charge Recovery of arrears
    • Arranging buildings insurance (where applicable)
    • Responding to customer queries
    • Provision of a response-based repairs service for those items which we are responsible for maintaining
    • Undertaking inspection visits
    • Consulting with leaseholders about management
    • Undertaking home visits and meetings
    • Sundry expenditure such as stationery, telephones and IT
  • How is the service charge calculated?

    The service charge year runs from 1 April to 31 March. Each year we look at how much money has been spent on providing the day-to-day running of your block or estate and also estimate how much will be needed in the next financial year. These estimates are based upon actual costs incurred in the previous financial year, inflation and prices from contractors. The estimate will be sent to you in the form of an account by 1 April of each year.

    By the end of September in each service charge year we will send you a service charge invoice, which shows the following:

    • The actual costs for the previous year based on our accounting records
    • The difference between the actual costs and the estimated costs that we charged you in the previous If the actual costs are greater than the amount we estimated, we will tell you what the difference is and ask you to make payment. If they are less, we will deduct the difference from the total bill
    • The current balance on your account
    • The total amount you need to pay based on the above breakdown.

    The proportion of the overall charge that you pay is set out in your lease. For example, if you live in a building consisting of four flats where cleaning to the communal areas is provided, the cost of providing the cleaning service would be divided by all the flats, so you would pay a quarter of the total calculated cost.

  • If you have questions about your service charge accounts

    If you have a question about your service charges then you can email the leasehold team at as soon as possible.  You also have the right to inspect relevant documents within six months of receiving your certificate.

  • Limits to how much we can charge you

    You must pay for work and services that are considered fair, reasonable and proportionate, so long as they are carried out to a reasonable standard.

    We can only charge you for work and services as set out in your lease and any that we have consulted you about, where appropriate.

    Charges for work carried out previously

    We can only charge you for work completed if we sent you a demand for payment within 18 months of us incurring the costs, or if we have told you during this period that you will be liable for these costs.


  • How can I pay my service charges?

    It is important that you pay your service charges. If you don’t, you may fall into arrears and risk losing your home.

    Direct debit

    Direct debit is a trouble-free way of paying your service charge from your bank account. Just call Customer Services on 01283 528528 with your bank details to set this up in one easy call. Payments made by direct debit are secure and guaranteed by your bank or building society. Because of administrative costs this service may be restricted to minimum payments.


     You can pay your service charges by post. Cheques should be made payable to Trent & Dove Housing. Do not send cash through the post. Please make sure you include your service charge reference number and leasehold property address with your payment. We will send you a receipt for your payment. You should send your payments to: Trent & Dove Housing, Trinity Square, Horninglow Street, Burton upon Trent, Staffordshire, DE14 1BL.


    You can make payments over the phone if you have a debit card by calling: 01283 528528. We will automatically post a receipt to you.

    You will need your service charge reference number and debit card with you when you call.

    How do I check the balance on my service charge account?

    You can check your service charge account balance at any time by calling Trent & Dove on 01283 528528.

  • What happens if I cannot afford to pay my service charges?

    Your lease requires you to pay all service charges due to us within the financial year in which they are due. It is a breach of your lease to not pay your service charges and we will commence recovery action against you for such debts. We may approach your mortgage provider and take legal court action which may result in you losing your home and incurring legal costs.

    If you are experiencing money problems and can’t afford to pay your bill, please talk to us at the earliest opportunity.

    Many agencies can give you free advice and help if you are in debt, including the National Debt-line, Citizens Advice Bureau and Consumer Credit Counselling Service.

    We will offer you a range of direct debit options to help you pay your bill by instalments, but you are required to pay the full years charge over a maximum 12-month period. if you have purchased your home with the aid of a mortgage, you may consider approaching your lender. They may be able to settle your invoice on your behalf and add the amount to your mortgage.

  • What happens if I ignore my leasehold charges?

    It is important that you pay your service charges in full and promptly according to your chosen payment method. If payments are not received when the charges are properly due and reasonable, then we can begin forfeiture proceedings by applying for a court order. The court has wide discretion where forfeiture is concerned, but if forfeiture is approved by a court, this can lead to us repossessing your property.

    Alternatively, we may seek a county court judgment for payment. If the court grants us judgment, payment can be enforced in a number of ways. These include enforcement by an attachment of earnings through your employer or seizure of goods by the court bailiff.

    You will have to pay legal costs and any court fees. If you ignore the order of the court, you and your family could lose your home or possessions.

  • Insurance
    Building insurance

    In most cases, Trent & Dove Housing is responsible for buildings insurance for your home (this is NOT contents insurance).

    If your mortgage lender offers you insurance, you should tell them that we insure the building on your behalf – this is one of our obligations under your lease. You will pay a share of the insurance cost through your service charges.

    The policy taken out by Trent & Dove Housing insures the building up to the re- instatement value of your home. This means the cost of putting it back in its condition before the damage.

    The contents of your home are NOT insured by us.

    Neither are you are insured against any damage you may cause to someone elses property (third party liability damage). For example, if there is a leak from a pipe in your property that floods into your neighbour’s home.

    Insurance cover - summary of key areas

    Buildings and permanent structures are insured against damage caused by: fire; storm; flood; collision; malicious damage; subsidence; escape of water/frost damage; accidental breakage of glass, fixed sanitary ware or bathroom fittings. Full details of insurance cover are available on request.

    General exclusions/limitations of cover

    General wear and tear or damage occurring gradually are not covered. If your home is unoccupied for more than 90 days a number of restrictions and policy conditions will apply. If this happens or may do, please contact our leasehold team on 01283 528528 to let them know.

    This is just a summary of cover and exclusions applying.

    Making a claim

    It is important that you contact the insurers as soon as possible in the event of a possible claim. Details of who to contact and how to claim are included in the annual insurance summary which is sent to you every year. You will be responsible for paying any excess under the policy.



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