The article in Insight about the publication of the latest RICS requirements regarding the running and management of service charges within multi-occupied properties makes good sense.
To maintain good relations between Landlord and Tenant it is best for managing agents to be transparent. Whilst Tenants need to pay their rents and service charges within the terms of the lease, Landlords need to avoid waste and unnecessary expenditure and keep service charges to a minimum level that enables them to comply with their obligations.
Tenants need to take professional advice before signing their lease and to understand what items of the cost they could be expected to pay or contribute towards to avoid nasty shocks later.
At Andrew Idle Associates, we have always avoided getting into disputes over service charges and have sought to provide reliable information during the heads of terms stage before a letting completes.