Service Charges for Tenants

Information about Service Charges for Council Tenants and the proposal to vary the Tenancy Agreement

Information about the variation of the Councils tenancy agreement and new service charge policy:

The Council has been consulting with its tenants and other stakeholders regarding service charges. This has helped us to produce a new policy.

Because the implementation of this policy will require a variation to the terms of the existing tenancy, it is sensible to make a number of other changes to the tenancy at the same time.

When will the new service charges be introduced?

We are looking to do this later on this year, probably in October or November. However, following our initial consultations we have agreed the following:

1. To limit the services that we will charge for. We will only charge for communal cleaning and gardening, communal electricity, communal bulk refuse removal and administration. Although we may introduce other charges in the future.

2. To gradually phase in the services that we will charge for.

  • October 2018/19 – Communal cleaning and gardening and administration on existing charges of 10%.
  • April 2020/21 – Communal electricity.
  • April 2021/22 – Communal bulk refuse removal.

3. To have a cap in place which will mean that no tenant will be charged more than £5.00 per week until April 2023/24.  

  • October/November 2018/19 - £3.00
  • April 2020/21 - £3.50
  • April 2021/22 - £4.00
  • April 2022/23 - £5.00
  • April 2023/24 – Full charge

How much would I have to pay?

It is mainly only those tenants who live in flats who will have to pay a service charge. The average charge will be £2.29 per week increasing to £4.17 by 2023/24.

Charges for some properties may be higher but will not exceed the cap that we have in place until 2023/24.

The charges that we are introducing are eligible for housing benefit and universal credit.

You can get an idea of the benefits that you can claim here: Benefits Calculator

What happens now?

We have started our formal consultation to vary the terms of our existing tenants’ tenancy agreements by sending out a preliminary notice of variation. This will only apply to those who have a lifetime secure tenancy (also known as a periodic tenancy) and those with an introductory tenancy.

Those tenants with a flexible fixed term tenancy will have a new tenancy with the new terms if their tenancy is renewed.

The preliminary notice gives tenants 28 days to comment on the proposed variations.

We will hold some drop-in sessions for tenants to attend and ask questions and provide feedback at the following times:

 

  • Between 10.00am and 12.00 noon Thursday 9 August at the Kinson Hub, Wimborne Road, Kinson, BH11 9AP.
  • Between 10am and 12.00 noon Tuesday 21st August at Castlepoint Library, Castlepoint, BH8 9UP

You can also send any comments to:

Seamus Doran, Tenancy Services Manager, Housing and Communities, Kinson Hub, Wimborne Road, Kinson BH11 9AW or email: seamus.doran@bournemouth.gov.uk

We will consider all comments we receive. After this, we will serve tenants with a formal Notice of Variation (under section 103 of the Housing Act 1985). This will include a copy of the new tenancy agreement and will tell you the date on which the changes will become effective.

If service charges are applicable to your property, then we will give you an additional 28 days’ notice of these new charges.  

Where can I find more information?

We have added some documents which you may find useful: