Promoting and enhancing best practice and technical expertise

Service Charge Practice in 2021

Service charges are a frequent area for dispute between tenants and their landlords. The emergence of the RICS Professional Statement in 2019 now dictates the standards by which chartered surveyors are expected to adhere, but since they form best practice, they will be seen as the benchmark standard by the courts for everyone involved in the industry. How is the Code working in the marketplace, what lessons should practitioners be reminded of, and what special considerations need to be focused upon due to the disruption caused by a COVID world?

Module Duration: 2 hours 35 minutes

Areas covered

  • The Regulatory Framework that Dictates Best Practice

    • RICS Professional Statement: service charges in commercial property (1st edition)
    • Proportionality 
    • Mandatory Requirements
    • Core principals underpinning the mandatory requirements
    • Common pitfalls and poor practice to be avoided 
    • Practical guidance to achieving best practice and avoiding disputes
    • Sara & Hossein Asset Holdings v Blacks Outdoor Retail - how conclusive is the year-end certificate?
    • Southwark LBC v Baharier - a blank cheque for the recovery of improvement costs?

    Practice Issues and in Particular Issues that have Arisen due to COVID

    • Code of Practice for commercial property relationships during COVID-19 pandemic
    • Complying with the RICS Professional Statement during the COVID-19 pandemic
    • Reducing the service charge costs - how far should you go?
    • Are service charges payable during enforced closures?
    • Accounting for advanced payments received for postponed major works - can you accrue the "costs"? 
    • Business failures and other risks for landlords
    • Are tenants defaulting on service charge payments? What action can landlords take?
    • Surrendering leases

    Question and Answers


  • Mark Shelton, Commercial Property Management Law Trainer, CPM Law Training Limited and Author of 'A Practical Guide to the Law of Dilapidations' and 'A Practical Guide to Applications for Landlords' Consent and Variation of Leases'
  • Peter Forrester FRICS, Chartered Surveyor; Principal, Service Charge Expert