Service charges

As well as your mortgage repayments, there are also other charges that you’ll need to pay, such as ground rent, rent and service charges.

Rent and service charges paid by our residents forms a large part of our income. These pay for the services we provide and are crucial in enabling us to maintain high standards. It is therefore very important, both for you and for us, that you pay your charges and that we collect all the charges due.

If you need more information, please contact our Customer Care on 0300 123 2209. They’re open 8am to 8pm Monday to Friday and from 9am to 1pm on a Saturday. If you would prefer to contact us via email, please email us at

Net rent

Rent, along with your service charge, is payable by shared owners who part rent and part buy their home. This amount will vary depending on the percentage that they own.

Ground rent

Ground rent is a rent payable to the landlord, and may be minimal. It is a specific requirement of your the lease and must be paid on the due date.

Service charges

Service charges are payable by the leaseholder on a yearly basis for services rendered. The terms of your service charge will be outlined in your lease, setting out what you will receive and what you’ll have to pay.

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Service charges vary with different properties, and estates, but may include the costs of:

  • management fees
  • audit fees
  • communal lighting
  • communal repairs
  • cleaning of communal areas
  • bin hires
  • electricity
  • estate management fees
  • lift maintenance
  • maintaining door-entry systems
  • garden services
  • communal building insurance
  • sinking funds towards the cost of cyclical decorations or major works
  • general repairs

Paying your service charge

Service charges are charged on a monthly basis at the beginning of the month and collected as a joint payment along with your monthly rent charge if you are a shared owner. Family Mosaic prefer to take payment via a direct debit, although leaseholders can set up a standing order.

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Once we’ve issued you with an invoice, you’ll need to make a payment to us within 30 days. You can do this by:

  • bank transfer: please quote your account reference number as the banking reference, so we are able to recognise your payment and allocate it to your account
  • cheque: please quote your account reference number on the back of your cheque, so we are able to recognise your payment and allocate it to your account
  • credit or debit card: please call us on 0300 123 2209 or email us at and we’ll be happy to take your payment
  • internet banking: please call us on 0300 123 2209 or email us at  and we can tell you how to set up this payment
  • direct debit, standing order or payment plan: please call us on 0300 123 2209 or email us at  and we’ll help you to set these up

How is my service charge estimated?

Most of our leaseholders are charged a variable service charge, as detailed in their lease agreement. This means that we estimate their service charge cost first, and charge them this amount at the beginning of the financial year. Then, at the end of the financial year, we work out the actual cost and compare the difference. Then we’ll either credit your account for the following year, or ask you to pay for any deficit charge.

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As you’ll appreciate, there are many reasons why the initial estimated service charge might change during the year. We try to be as precise as possible, but we have to estimate for some costs like utilities.

We will send you an written statement showing the service charge income and expenditure no later than 30 September each year.

What happens if I don’t pay my service charge?

If, after 30 days, your invoice remains unpaid and you have not set up a direct debit or agreed payment plan with us, we will contact you to discuss the reasons for your non-payment. If you don’t then pay us, we will pursue the debt according to the terms of your lease. If necessary, we will pass your account to external solicitors and / or contact your mortgage provider.

Please note that further possession proceedings may be taken against you which could result in your losing your home.

Service charge queries

If you think your service charge is unreasonable, call us on 0300 123 2209 or email

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Your query will then be investigated and we will send you an explanation.

If, after this, you’re still dissatisfied, you can apply to the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal, who are empowered by the government to decide liability for payment of service charges.

If you’re unhappy with their recommendation, you may appeal to the Lands Tribunal under section 175 of the Commonhold and Leasehold Reform Act 2002. Permission for you to appeal, however, must be granted by the Leasehold Valuation Tribunal.

External managing agents

You might have bought a share in a home that is in a development that is managed by an external managing agent (EMA), rather than by Family Mosaic.

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In this case, the service charge budget will be set by the EMA. We will analyse this budget carefully and challenge it if necessary. The charges levied can vary substantially between development, and may be more than we would levy if we were the managing agent.

Unlike Family Mosaic, the EMA will set a management fee that covers their costs and makes them a profit. We will also include a reduced fee on top of the EMA’s bill, to cover our costs, as well as an audit fee to cover the costs of producing annual accounts.

The EMA manages and controls all the communal repairs and maintenance of the development, and their services, like cleaning, may vary from those provided by Family Mosaic.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do service charges cover the cost of maintaining my individual property?

No, they only cover the cost of maintaining the communal areas of the development.

Leaseholders are responsible for maintaining the inside of their own property, including all necessary repairs and decoration. This is apart from during the defects period, where the contractor will rectify any defects that occur inside your home.

Why are my neighbours being charged a different service charge than me?

In some developments everyone pays the same service charge, whereas in other developments service charges are based on the size of the property (meaning those with large flats pay a higher charge). In some Family Mosaic developments the charge you pay depends on how many bedrooms your property contains.

Will my service charge payments go up in the future?

Service charges generally do rise year on year, mainly due to inflation but sometimes because of service enhancements. It is not unheard of for service charges to reduce, but this is rare. It is very common for service charges to rise after the first year, and purchasers should be aware of this, and take this into account when ascertaining whether a service charge is affordable in terms of their budget.

I live on the ground floor, why should I pay for the lift when I never use it?

Although you live on the ground floor, your property benefits from having the lift, as it gives access to all floors including the roof, so the lift will be used by any visiting contractors attending to fix a communal repair, such as a faulty communal television system, or a roof repair.

When is your financial year end date?

Our financial year runs from April 1st through to March 31st.

My service charge contains a provision for services that we have not had during the year. Why should I pay for something which hasn’t been done?

If Family Mosaic has collected money from residents via service charges and one of the services that make up service charges has not had any expenditure on it then there is likely to be a surplus on this item when the accounts are reconciled at the end of the financial year. If there is an overall surplus on the budget, then we will refund this money back to residents.

We are not allowed to make a profit on service charges, and the management fee only covers our cost of delivering services to your development so any surpluses will always be refunded to residents. Evidence of the surplus will be shown on the audited accounts.

Customer Care

Improving health, wealth and wellbeing through housing

Improving health, wealth and wellbeing through housing

Improving health, wealth and wellbeing through housing