‘Managers Must Have Their Say’ On RICS Service Charge Code

Consultation On 3rd Edition To Run Until End Of August

08.08.2013

By Rob Dixon

Owners and managers of leasehold properties have been warned by legal experts they have until the end of August to respond to a consultation on the third edition of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors’ (RICS) Service Charge Residential Management Code.

The latest edition of the voluntary code, which is based around the principle of promoting good practice when managing residential leasehold properties, has been created after an updated second edition was consulted upon and agreed among stakeholders – but not finally endorsed by the Government.

RICS has now been given a list of issues which the document is expected to cover from the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG), with the new edition expected to be user-friendly and up-to-date on best practice issues.

It is also hoped that the removal of references to specific statutory instruments and industry codes will ensure that its shelf life is longer than previous versions. DCLG has also asked whether the changes proposed will have a negative impact on business.

The consultation is expected to run until August 31st.

Danny Revitt, a Partner and specialist in property litigation issues at Irwin Mitchell, said: “The introduction of a new code will affect anyone involved in the ownership or management of blocks of leasehold property where a service charge is applied.

“Because of this, it will be vital that such organisations and individuals ensure that they get their voices heard during this consultation process to ensure that any new code is entirely fit for purpose and meets the requirements that the Government expects.

“It should also be noted that the aim is clearly to ensure the new code can be in place for a long period without the need for redrafting or amends. If it is set to be in place for some time, it is important that property managers and other parties ensure they have had their say during this consultation period.”

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