Local property experts urge commercial landlords to note new rules on Service Charges

James Hunt, Commercial Property Manager at Mather Jamie.

Leading Leicestershire property management firm Mather Jamie is encouraging commercial landlords across the Midlands to take heed of new rules relating to commercial property service charges. Landlords are being advised to ensure they are prepared to meet the new requirements, which came into force on 1st April 2019.

The mandatory obligations are aimed at protecting commercial tenants from unscrupulous landlords and ensuring greater transparency around service charges.

The new RICS Professional Statement, Service Charges in Commercial Property 1st Edition (September 2018), is effective for all service charge periods commencing from 1st April 2019. This document replaces the existing RICS Service Charge Guidance Notes.

James Hunt, Commercial Property Manager at Mather Jamie, said: “The new RICS Professional Statement offers clear and concise requirements that RICS-accredited firms must adhere to.

“These include mandatory requirements and best practice guidelines which provide a benchmark for all property professionals governed by the RICS.

“This is a welcome change for commercial service charges, which will hopefully ensure clearer explanations from landlords and agents about service charge costs and provide a better level of transparency regarding what are often seen by occupiers as hidden and excessive costs. Furthermore, the statement is an attempt to avoid disputes and to provide guidance on the resolution of any disputes that should arise.”