How do I set up a Service charge budget?

Zenya Allen
Zenya Allen
  • Updated

If you have Service charge switched on, you will be able to:

  • Set up budgets on a Head Property
  • Send demands to the leaseholders for payment
  • Collect Service charge monies
  • Produce Service charge reports
  • Reconcile funds in the Management Company

This article includes: 

Adding a new schedule

A schedule must be created with a name and date period before a budget can be added.

  1. Double click Properties from the side menu
  2. Click Search for Head Properties Only
    1. Search the relevant Property using Search Text by Name, Code or Status
    2. Alternatively, find the Property using Additional Options from the dropdown menu
    3. Or select a Branch if multi branch is set up on your CFPwinMan
  3. Click on the Property
  4. Click the spanner icon on the toolbar, Service Charge Administration
    1. Alternatively, click the Unit Management tab
    2. Click Service Charge Administration
  5.  The Service Charge Administration will display
    1. Use Period End Date - Tick if you want to force the financial year end date as entered on the Management Company bank account. This will help keep reporting to the financial year for each block.
      For more information on How to add an end of financial year date to a Service charge block, click here
    2. Schedule Template - Standard templates can be set up in User Defaults, which already have certain budget items. These can be amended and additional ones added if required.
      For more information on Service charge user defaults, click here
    3. Start Date - Enter the date for the start of the budget period
    4. End date - Enter an end date for the end of the budget period
    5. Schedule Name - The name will appear on the Service charge demand to the leaseholders
    6. Short Name - Enter a shorter name which appears on some reports and to leaseholders 
    7. Service Charge Period - Select the period as set out in the management agreement
      1. If the budget you are setting up is a commercial Property, select S - Single. This enables the Landlord to pay for the Service charge should the Property be vacant
      2. If any of your leaseholders have a payment plan arrangement where it has been agreed they don't have to pay as per the management agreement, select S - Single. This enables you to set a different payment term for each of the leaseholders.
        For more information on How do I set up an instalment plan for block management, click here
    8. To Management Company - Leave as ticked. This means money collected from the leaseholders will be received into the Management Company
      For more information on How do I add or change a Management Company on a Head Property, click here
    9. Mgmt % - Leave empty as the management commission will be added as a Contractor and form part of the budget
    10. LL Liable - Only tick if it is a commercial Property and the Landlord pays for the Service charge
    11. Charge in Arrears - Leave unticked unless you send Service charge demands after the period which they are due
    12. Posted - After the budget has been set up and is correct, the Service charge will be posted
    13. Archived - When a budget is zero, the Service charge for that period can be archived 


Setting up the budget with a breakdown of budget items

Once the name and dates of the budget have been created, you can set up the budget. Once the first years budget is set up, future ones can be cloned and increased by the agreed percentage, if required, and budget amounts edited.

  1. Follow the above steps up to 5.7
  2. Click on the Schedule Name
  3. Click the Schedule Allocation, the graph with a magnifier icon, on the toolbar
  4. The Schedule Allocation for .... will display
    1. The Start Date, End Date and Period will be as set up in the new schedule 
  5. Budget Items - Click into the first empty row, click the dropdown arrow and select an item. If your budget item doesn't appear in the list, you can add more expense types in User Defaults
    For more information on Service charge user defaults, click here
    1. Notes - A note can be added, if required. These will show on the leaseholders demand
    2. Amount - Enter the full years budget amount for that item
    3. Total Budget - Appears in red until you Allocate the Budget to leaseholders
  6. Contributions - A list of all leaseholders appears for you to allocate a percentage or fixed amount
    1. If each leaseholder pays a separate amount of contribution, type the amount or the percentage on the corresponding line  
    2. Even Split - If there is an even split across all leaseholders, click to split evenly
    3. Once all contributions are added, the Total Budget and Allocated Budget turn green
    4. If both are still red, you won't be able to Confirm and Post. In this instance, round up one of the budget items, often only by a penny so the balance turns green
    5. Lock Percentages - Once the contributions have been added, tick so they can't be edited
  7. Demands For ..... 
    1. Each time you click on a leaseholders name, this section will give details of their payments. If there is a rounding amount, this is added to the first contribution unless you untick Apply rounding to first month
    2. Export to CSV - If required, you can save a copy of the schedule to a location on your computer
    3. View Contributions - A full list of each leaseholders contributions can be viewed in a grid
    4. Save as Draft - If you aren't ready to confirm and post, a draft can be saved for you to edit later. At this point you can produce an Estimated Budget Report, see below
    5. Exit - Click Yes to save or No to exit
    6. Confirm and Post - Saves the budget ready to issue demands to the leaseholders

If a leaseholder is not appearing in the Contributions list, they will need to be made an active Tenancy.
For more information on Why are a Tenancy and unit not appearing on the schedule, click here


Creating an Estimated Budget report

This provides a preview of the Service charge budget before it is confirmed and posted, meaning any changes can still be made at this point. It can either be sent to the leaseholders or you can view each leaseholders copy without it being sent.

  1. Click on the Schedule Name
  2. Click the reverse tick icon, Generate Service Charge Reports
    1. Select report - Estimated Budget
    2. From and To dates must match the same dates as your Service charge budget
    3. Click to include Instalment Plans and an Accompanying letter
    4. Schedule - Select the schedule you want to preview or send to the leaseholders
    5. Export to Excel - Locate a place on your computer which to save the excel spreadsheet
    6. Email/Print - Sends the report to the leaseholders by their delivery type
      For more information on How can I record consent preferences for GDPR, click here
    7. Preview to see a copy of each leaseholders estimated budget and their contributions


Setting up User Defaults templates

There are many default settings for Service charge which will help you manage your budgets more efficiently.
For more information on Service charge user defaults, click here