Fees and Charges explained

Services provided to all leasehold residents at Newlands

A key benefit of living at Newlands is the level of support, care and services that are available to make life comfortable and enjoyable. The core services provided are paid for via our service charge.

Service charge

The service charge is chargeable weekly and collected each calendar month.  It is a variable charge reviewed annually to reflect the changes in the cost of delivering the services which include:

Property

  • Routine external maintenance to the buildings
  • External cleaning of windows and gutters and internal cleaning of communal areas
  • Buildings insurance
  • Structural surveys

Communal facilities

  • Use of the communal lounge, restaurant, library and hairdressers
  • Heating, lighting and maintenance of all communal areas, including lifts
  • Access to laundry service
  • Access to housekeeping services

Gardens and Estate Management

  • Garden and grounds maintenance for communal areas by Newland’s gardener
  • Refuse Services
  • Gardening Sundries
  • Access to handyman services
  • Operation and maintenance of all external lighting
  • Upkeep of private roads
  • 24 hour staff presence on site
  • Door and Gate entry control systems

Care and support

  • Initial health and well being assessment
  • On site manned 24 hour domiciliary care agency providing monitoring and response     to emergency alarm units 
  • Support and liaison with appropriate medical professionals and/or agencies
  • Quarterly visit by a member of Newlands domiciliary support team

Social events and activities management

Concierge service who will:

  • Coordinate, facilitate and organise social events
  • Provide a liaison with local clubs and societies
  • Promote integration within the community

Transport

  • Provision of communal transport for planned shopping excursions
  • Purchase/Hire, replacement, running and upkeep of all vehicles
  • Contribution to the cost of the driver(s)

Management and Administration 

Dedicated administrative and customer service staff providing:

  • Reception and booking services
  • Advice regarding on site services (e.g. care)
  • General administration
  • Quarterly Meetings
  • Minutes, Correspondence, Disbursements
  • Accountancy & Book-Keeping
  • Bank Charges
  • Audit Certification
  • There is no profit element in the charge

The service charge for 2020-2021 is £4,208.58 (£350.72 per month)

This charge relates to services that are delivered during any one 12 month accounting period (1st September to 31st August the next year), and varies from one off payments (e.g. building insurance premiums) to ongoing periodic payments (e.g. window cleaning).

The service charge is held on trust for residents as required by the Landlord and Tenant Act 1987.

Reserve/Sinking fund

A reserve fund is built up over time so that money is available when needed for major repairs and improvements. This capital investment programme is informed by regular asset surveys. At the end of August 2019 the balance of the fund was £18,699.00.

In order to reduce the burden of major repairs on owners, Newlands of Stow manages all significant repairs to the exterior of the properties and its structure. This reassures our residents that if a significant replacement or renewal is required to the fabric of their property (for example windows or external doors), it will be completed professionally.

This means that we can:

  • Protect the external appearance of all properties in the village for the benefit of all our residents and help protect the value of the properties.
  • Offer the peace of mind that the fabric of your home will be maintained.

The reserve fund charge is based on a ten year programme for major items of future capital replacement and/or maintenance expenditure (window replacement for example). Its purpose is to spread these costs over time and thus more equitably apportion such costs to residents.
The reserve fund charge is included within the service charge that you pay. 

Any shortfalls in the funds needed to meet the costs of future works will be recovered from residents through the service charge.

Leasehold Properties

All properties sold through Newlands are on a reducing 125 year assignable lease. The original date was 2009.  The main reasons for selling properties leasehold are to:

  • Retain management of the overall site and to ensure the lifestyle, care and support services are provided to a high standard
  • Manage the overall maintenance of the community facilities, gardens and property exteriors to a high standard to protect the value for our residents
  • Provide property services, affording the peace of mind that property maintenance will be managed professionally.

The lease is a legal document that clearly sets out the responsibilities of Berkeley Healthcare Ltd (the freeholder), Newlands Management Ltd (the manager) and the lessee (owner). Your solicitor will advise you on the contents of the lease.

Ground Rent 

Subject to your lease, ground rent is payable annually. The cost is currently £325 per annum. The ground rent is subject to five yearly reviews based on changes in the retail price index. The next review is due in 2024.

Transfer Fee (Event fee)

Your lease includes a provision for a payment to Berkeley Healthcare Ltd on the sale of your property in the future when the lease is assigned to a new owner. This payment is a percentage of the price at which your property is sold and varies according to how long you have owned the property.

The figure is normally 7.5% but is reduced to 6% if you have owned the property from one to two years and further reduced to 5% if you have only owned the property for up to one year prior to sale. The fee has three components, as follows.

First, Berkeley Healthcare Ltd have made a substantial investment in land, buildings and equipment in providing you with high quality communal facilities intended to enhance the quality of life and amenity for you and other residents. These costs are not recovered in the initial selling price of the properties. 

Accordingly the payment provides Berkeley Healthcare Ltd with a return on its capital investment in the communal facilities over the lifetime of the development, which would otherwise need to be added to the initial sale price, or without which the facilities could not be provided. 

This payment should not be confused with the service charge, which covers the cost of providing services and generally maintaining and managing the estate.

Second, Berkeley Healthcare Ltd has the right to market the property exclusively for the first thirteen weeks. Only after this time can the vendor employ another estate agent (at their own expense). 

Third, the payment covers the administrative and legal expenses that Berkeley Healthcare Ltd incurs in a future sale of your property. 

So in summary, the payment is designed to compensate Berkeley Healthcare Ltd for:

  1. The capital cost of providing communal facilities available to leaseholders and residents

  2. Sale costs incurred by Berkeley Healthcare Ltd (similar to an estate agent’s fee)

  3. Legal and other administrative costs involved on a purchase or sale. 

Berkeley Healthcare Ltd regards this provision as a core term of the lease, which strikes a fair balance between the landlord and you the tenant for the reasons explained above. 

Worked example of the impact of the transfer fee on the proceeds of a sale:

Example 1 – Owner sells for a gross selling price of £515,000 and moves away

Length of Ownership                  Percentage                 Transfer fee Payable
Up to 1 year                               5% of £515,000           £25,750
1 to 2 years                                6% of £515,000           £30,900
2 years and above                     7.5% of £515,000        £38,625
 
NB The actual selling price may differ from the illustrated price. If the actual selling price is higher or lower the transfer fee payable will be correspondingly higher or lower.

Example 2 – Owner sells the same property for £515,000 and buys another in the village:

Should the owner wish to purchase another property within the development the following applies depending on the relative price of the new property.

If the new property purchase price was £400,000 (i.e. lower) there would be no transfer fee required on this property.

If the new property purchase price was £600,000 (i.e. higher) a transfer fee would be required on the difference (£85,000) between the sale price (£515,000) and the new purchase price (£600,000) based on the length of ownership as above.

Length of Ownership                 Percentage                   Transfer fee Payable
Up to 1 year                              5% of £85,000               £4,250
1 to 2 years                               6% of £85,000               £5,100
2 years and above                    7.5% of £85,000            £6,375

Managing the finances

The service charge budget and accounts are published annually and are available to customers and residents.  Annual accounts are published and shared with the residents.  Finance 1:1 meetings are held with residents once the accounts have been issued. Feedback from residents is welcomed and taken into account. The charge can be altered with a 3 month notice.  Should there be any interruption to services, alternative arrangements are made.  Any surplus or deficit in the budget is amended in the budget for the following year.

We do not have a financial interest in any other firm involved in running Newlands of Stow or receive an incentive or commission from third party suppliers relating to any of the services paid for by residents through the service charge.

February 2020