Financial Management

Financial Management

Paying Your Account

Statements are issued annually and include the cost of works carried out in each estate, including grass cutting and shrub maintenance. All invoices include owner’s share of the costs of providing the Estate Management Service.

Our Owners Liaison Officer deals with any enquiries regarding your statement on T: 01506 639158

 

Methods of Payment

Invoices

We issue invoices annually and when work costing over £50 has been completed. Where we have identified and carry out repairs to common shared areas, whether that is to a block or the wider Estate, each owner is charged their share of the cost of the work when the invoice is issued.

Paying Your Account

We allow 21 days for payment of an invoice. If payment is not received a series of reminder letters are issued. Where possible the owner will be contacted by phone to encourage payment and find out if there are any issues that need to be addressed.

Annual

The annual invoice contains charges for any individual maintenance that was not more than £50 including landscape work throughout the year, although collectively all maintenance carried out could amount to more than £50. The annual invoicing is completed at the start of the year normally by the end of February, although this may be subject to slight changes. Supporting documentation can be made available for inspection on request.

Maintenance completed over £50

Any maintenance carried out where the owners individual share is over £50 will be invoiced as soon as we are satisfied the work is completed to the appropriate standard. Any guarantees for work will be included with the invoice.

Disputes

If you dispute an invoice, we will explain your liability. If the dispute involves a complaint about the quality or content of the work carried out, your account will be noted accordingly and the dispute passed to the Owners Liaison Officer for action

You can access our Complaints Procedure if you are not satisfied with the service you have received.

Management Fees

Our Annual Estate Management Fee covers the cost of:

Owners Paying

  • Compliance with legislation and regulatory guidance governing our service
  • Management of the open space maintenance contract
  • Regular estate inspections including any unadopted footpaths or hard landscaped areas, grass, trees, shrubs etc.
  • General enquiries and communications with, and from, owners
  • Management of routine work required to the estate open spaces
  • Invoicing and management of owners accounts

The cost of managing the services on the estates is additional to the actual cost of the work carried out. This is reviewed annually to ensure costs of the Estate Management Service are appropriately recharged.

We review the management fee to be charged for work carried out during the year and in 2014 the staff time involved indicated the total cost to Weslo was in the region of £63000. This includes our reception staff dealing with enquires, inspectors checking the estates are safe and sound, Our repairs staff raising works orders, management of the grass cutting and shrub bed maintenance contract and processing owner’s invoices. We only recharge the direct costs of providing the service and the management fee reflects our staff time in managing the work required. There is no element of profit in our service.

We analyse the work required in each estate and categorise these as a low, medium or high level of management. Based on our actual costs in 2014 we calculated that an estate with a low level of management will receive a £12 management fee, medium £17, and high £25. We do not feel it would be fair to apply the same management fee across all our estates as some have very small areas of unadopted open space or may require more time to manage the service to residents and deal with local issues. The ranking process therefore takes into account the size of open space area managed in the estate, repairs, and issues identified during the year from each state to manage the open spaces.

When compared to published figures for equivalent services to owners, our management charge is the lowest in central Scotland. The Scottish Housing Regulator indicates that Registered Social Landlords must ensure that fees charged to owners are not subsidised by tenants and reflect the cost of providing the service. We carry out a review of our costs annually prior to issuing the annual invoice to ensure the service is not being subsidised by our tenants. Different amounts of work are required in different estates and we want to ensure that our charging system fairly reflects this.

Management Fee for Work over £50

Where we complete shared repairs on behalf of owners where the share is over £50 our management fee is currently 17.5% of the total cost up to a maximum of £35. This is reviewed annually. We invoice on completion of the work.

Insurance

Owners are required to have their own building insurance to adequately cover their property which should include any responsibility for common parts. Where we do provide common block insurance we issue owners with their individual policy details and any claim is made directly with the insurer and does not involve Weslo.

We have Commercial and Property Owners Public Liability Insurance to cover the event of third party injury or damage caused in the course of our business. Contact us directly if a claim in relation to our third party injury policy is required.

Debt Management

Our debt management process is a framework of good practice and where possible, debts are dealt with on an individual basis. We tailor our approach to meet owners needs but also have due regard to the business need to recover the monies due.

Account Payment

We engage with owners to help and support them to deal with any outstanding balance on their account. All attempts will be made to contact owners, address any concern regarding the maintenance within our estates, identify possible issues that are impacting on their ability to pay, and help set up a manageable repayment plan. It is our policy to pursue all the amounts we are due. We are always willing to discuss payment by instalments, so please contact our Owners Liaison Officer if you want to arrange this.

Legal Action

All attempts will be made to contact owners to discuss their debt before legal action is instigated. It is not a decision taken lightly by us. We will pursue owners for Decree in the hope that they will acknowledge their debt and come to an arrangement through the court. If this does not happen we will consider further diligence such as a wage arrestment. We can register an inhibition on the property to protect the amount due and ensure that on sale of the property the debt is recovered.

All costs incurred to recover a debt will be recharged to the owner’s account which will be explained in all communication, giving owners every opportunity to engage with us to prevent the debt escalating.

Our debt recovery process has been summarised in this Flow Chart.