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You can find a list of frequently asked questions about billing below.

If you have a question that is not answered here, please get in touch with our Customer Support Centre.

What's the difference between a bill / invoice and an Annual Charging Schedule?

Your Annual Charging Schedule provides a detailed breakdown of your estimated charges for the full financial year. Your bill contains only the total amount due for a specific billing period (month or quarter).

When will I receive an Annual Charging Schedule?

Your Annual Charging Schedule will normally be sent in advance of your first bill of a new financial year. You should keep your Annual Charging Schedule to hand throughout the year as a helpful reference when you receive your bills.

If you have any further questions about the timing of your bill or your Annual Charging Schedule, please visit our website where we have useful information about Annual Charging Schedules, property bills and rent, and other charges.

Alternatively, please contact our Customer Support Centre.

 

Why are the amounts in my bill and Annual Charging Schedule different?

Why are the amounts in my invoice and Annual Charging Schedule different?

This may be as a result of a change to the occupancy data for the property or amendments that have been made to the budget figures since you received your Annual Charging Schedule.

So that we can consider your specific circumstances, please get in touch with our Customer Support Centre.

To help our team direct your query, please tell us which part of your invoice (rent, facilities management (FM) or service charge or a combination of these) does not match the Annual Charging Schedule.

When will I get my bills?

For 2019/20 you will receive two separate bills each quarter:

- a bill for rent and rates
- a bill for facilities management charges and service charges 

The first bills of the financial year are issued during Q1 (April-June 2019). For the remainder of the year, bills will be issued in the first month of each quarter (July 2019, October 2019 and January 2020) unless otherwise stated in your occupancy documents.

I haven't received my bill - why is this?

The first bills of the financial year will be issued during Q1 (April-June 2019). For the remainder of the year, bills will be issued in the first month of each quarter (July 2019, October 2019 and January 2020) unless otherwise stated in your occupancy documents.

If you have not received your bill as expected or you need to update your billing contact details, please contact the Customer Support Centre.

Why have I received a bill for rent only?

Bills for rent and rates, and service charge and facilities management charges will usually be issued at the same time.

However, there may be occasions where you receive the bill for rent and rates before the bill for service charges and facilities management charges.

This is likely to be due to amendments being made to the figures for service charges and facilities management charges.

My bill doesn't reflect changes to the space I use - what can I do about this?

NHS Property Services has undertaken a full data collection across its 3000 properties to establish occupancy data and all charges are based on this information.

Help us keep your property data correct by letting us know of any changes. Occupiers with a formal occupancy agreement must refer to the terms of their agreement when considering any occupancy changes.  Occupiers without a formal occupancy agreement must inform us of any planned changes to occupancy, at least three months in advance, by completing an Occupancy Change Notice which can be found here and ensuring that you also inform your Clinical Commissioning Group.

Once the form has been completed and submitted, a member of NHS Property Services will contact you to discuss your occupancy requirements. This process ensures occupancy data is correct and drives accurate billing.

Subject to meeting defined criteria, clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) may be eligible to surrender surplus space to NHS Property Services through the Vacant Space Handback policy.

Why has my bill changed/gone up/down?

There are a number of reasons why this could happen. Common reasons include changes to your occupancy of a property, budget changes or changes to the types of service provided to the property.

If you still have questions about your specific bill, please contact our Customer Support Centre.

To help our team direct your question, please let us know if it relates to rent, facilities management or service charge costs, or a combination of these.

I've received a bill for a property I no longer occupy? Why have I received this?

NHS Property Services has undertaken a full data collection across its 3000 properties to establish occupancy data and all charges are based on this information.

Help us keep your property data correct by letting us know of any changes. Occupiers with a formal occupancy agreement must refer to the terms of their agreement when considering any occupancy changes. Occupiers without a formal occupancy agreement must inform us of any planned changes to occupancy, at least three months in advance, by completing an Occupancy Change Notice which can be found here and ensuring that you also inform your Clinical Commissioning Group.

Once the form has been completed and submitted, a member of NHS Property Services will contact you to discuss your occupancy requirements. This process ensures occupancy data is correct and drives accurate billing.

Subject to meeting defined criteria, clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) may be eligible to surrender surplus space to NHS Property Services through the Vacant Space Handback policy.

If you need to update the billing contact details, please contact our Customer Support Centre.

How do I pay my bill?

You can pay your bill by BACS or cheque made payable to NHS Property Services Ltd. All the payment details can be found on your bill.

If you receive a communication (either by email or phone) that asks you to send payment to details that differ from the payment details on your bill, please contact your property manager immediately. You should call your property manager directly on a phone number you know to be genuine before sending any money.

Please ensure you quote your unique customer number when you make any payments to NHS Property Services. This will ensure we can promptly apply the payments to your account. Your customer number can be found on your bill and your Annual Charging Schedule and will be in the format CXXXXXXX.

Providing a remittance for payments will facilitate the prompt and accurate allocations of your payment. The email address for remittance advices is remittances@property.nhs.uk

The postal address for remittance advices is:

NHS Property Services Ltd

99 Gresham Street,

London,

EC2V 7NG

When do I need to pay bills by?

Payment is due 30 days from when you received the invoice, unless you have an agreed lease that states otherwise.

How do I change the billing contact details?

If you need to update your billing contact details, please get in touch with our Customer Support Centre.

I’ve got a question about my bill. Who can I speak to?

It’s possible you might find the answer to your query on our website, where we have useful information about Annual Charging Schedules, property bills and rent, and other charges.

If you still need to get in touch with us, please contact our Customer Support Centre.

To help our team direct your question, please let us know if it relates to rent, facilities management (FM) or service charge costs, or a combination of these.

How do I make a complaint?

By making a complaint, you’re giving us the opportunity to investigate and improve our services for everybody.

Your complaint will be handled by a case manager who will always look to address your concern quickly and keep you updated about progress.

If you'd like to make a complaint, please contact our Customer Support Centre.

What is a superior landlord?

A superior landlord is the owner of the building or site you occupy. In some cases, NHS Property Services leases a building from superior landlord and we pass on their costs in our bills.

What is an additional sum?

Additional sums refer to the insurance and utilities costs related to the exclusive space that you occupy. These are recovered via the service charge but would not normally be included as individual service charge categories on your bill for service charges and facilities management charges.

What are facilities management charges?

The facilities management charges that appear on your bill are the costs of maintaining the exclusive space you occupy (i.e. that is not shared with any other organisations), which is often called your ‘demise’ or ‘demised area’. Example charges may include office equipment or photocopiers for areas that you do not share with anyone else in the building.

What is a service charge?

A service charge relates to the common areas and shared areas of your building.

If you occupy a ‘multi-occupancy’ building (one that you share with other organisations), then there are areas of that building you all use, called common areas.

For example, the main entrance, reception area, and lifts would all be common areas. All the organisations in the building pay a share of the cost of the upkeep of the common areas, for example, for cleaning and maintenance. These are called service charges.

However, if you are the only occupier of a building (meaning there are no other occupiers sharing it) you may still have a service charge, for example, where there is a ‘superior landlord’. In some cases, NHS Property Services does not own the building that you occupy, but we lease it from a third party, known as the ‘superior landlord’ and we pass on their costs for the repair and maintenance of the building.

If the superior landlord owns more than one building on your site, there could be common areas outside. This could include the car park, estate road or landscaping and security. You may be charged a service charge for your share of the cost of maintaining these areas.

Sometimes, you might see cleaning, maintenance or other charges listed twice on your bill and if this has happened, it’s likely that this is because one is a service charge relating to the common areas and one is a facilities management charge, relating to your exclusive area.

Another reason you may still receive a service charge if you are the only occupier in a property is because some areas of a building might traditionally be considered as common areas in terms of service provision.

For example, toilets could be considered as a common area in a property shared by multiple organisations. This means that cleaning services provided to toilets may be included under a service charge for occupiers that are the only occupiers of a property, even when toilets in the property are not shared with any other organisations. This does not affect the amount that you will be required to pay.

I share my building with other organisations (known as multi-occupancy). How do you work out the exact amount I should pay?

If you have a lease, this will set out your charges.

If you don’t have a lease, and you share your building with other organisations, there are two parts to your charges:

  1. Your contribution towards the cost of maintaining the shared areas and common areas (such as a reception area). This is calculated based on your percentage occupancy of the total building area. More information on this can be found in the customer guide to charges here.
  2. Your charges for the cost of maintaining the parts of the building you use exclusively.

If you don't have a lease and would like to discuss the types of occupancy agreement available with NHS Property Services, such as a Rental Agreement Letter, please contact ORP@property.nhs.uk.

Why have I been charged a management fee?

Management fees are charged to cover the administrative costs involved in arranging services on your behalf. Management fees are charged on specific services at either five or ten percent. This is in accordance with the Charging Policy agreed with the Department of Health and Social Care and NHS England/Improvement.

Why have I been charged a management fee for rates? Is this new?

This is not a new charge. A 5% management fee for rates will continue to be applied to cover administrative costs. This is in accordance with the Charging Policy agreed with the Department of Health and Social Care and NHS England/Improvement. 

If you are already charged a management fee for rent, then the amount shown on your bill and the Annual Charging Schedule under 'Rent Management Fee' will also include the management fee for rates.

If you are not charged a management fee for rent, the amount shown on your bill and Annual Charging Schedule under 'Rent Management Fee' will be for the management fee for rates only. 

GPs will not be charged a management fee on either rent or rates.

What is planned preventative maintenance?

Planned preventative maintenance is work we do to prevent your building falling into disrepair, helping to avoid the need for urgent, and usually more expensive reactive works to get things back up and running.

An example of this could be servicing the lift in the building or refurbishing the toilets.

Why am I being charged for planned preventative maintenance and reactive works before work has even been done?

Operating in this way helps to protect you against sudden and unexpected costs throughout the year and helps with cashflow planning.

If at the end of the year the upkeep of your building hasn’t cost as much as we had budgeted for, we will refund any underspend to you. On the other hand, if it costs more than expected, we’ll charge you the increase.

We always try and set our reactive and planned budgets as accurately as possible, taking into account the work we have planned, and costs from previous years.

What costs are reimbursable for GPs?

Rent, business rates, water and clinical waste collection.

I’m a GP. How do I claim back my reimbursable costs?

If you are a GP, you can be reimbursed for rent, business rates, water and clinical waste collection costs. This is done by way of funding allocated by your local Commissioner

If you haven’t received your funding for the financial year 2019/20, you should get in touch with your local Commissioner directly.

We are a dispensing practice, can we claim reimbursement for dispensary clinical waste?

Yes, if you are a dispensing practice you can claim reimbursement from your local Commissioner.

What are business rates?

Business rates are set by the Valuation Office Agency and collected by your local authority. It is a local property tax on the occupation of commercial property, payable by private and public sector businesses alike.

The business rates on my bill are wrong – what can I do about this?

We actively review and challenge rates where we believe the Valuation Office Agency has miscalculated the valuation of the property.

If you believe the business rates on your bill have been miscalculated, or if you would like more information about business rates, please contact our Customer Support Centre.

What is market rent and how is it set?

Market rent is the level of rent for a property, determined by an independent professional valuer or the Valuation Office Agency, applying market recognised valuation standards and approach. It is based on a comparison with similar properties in the same area, market conditions, and takes into account the current condition of the specific property assuming a full repairing and insuring (FRI) lease, whereby repairs are assumed to be carried out and paid for by the occupant. Service charges for shared areas, and facilities management charges for areas exclusively used by the occupant are calculated and charged separately.

Market rent is applied to all NHSPS freehold and long leasehold properties, as required by the Treasury and the Department of Health and Social Care. For properties that NHSPS lease, including PFI buildings, the rent charged to customers will be a pro rata pass-through of the rent NHSPS pay, or market rent if the rent payable by NHSPS is at a peppercorn, or similar low level, below market level.

Market rent provides a clear picture of the true cost of occupation, comparable to commercially leased healthcare premises. This information, and ability to make direct comparisons supports better decisions across the NHS about optimising space, cost efficiency and strategic planning.

 

 

Why does NHS Property Services charge market rent?

We moved to charge market rent in April 2016 to provide our occupiers with a clear picture of the true cost of occupation. This in turn leads to better decisions about cost efficiency and strategic planning.

Is there extra funding for market rent?

If you are a GP, any funding you receive from your Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) for reimbursable costs will include funding for market rent.

If you haven’t received your funding for the financial year 2019/20, you should get in touch with your local CCG directly.

If you are a GP, you can get a current market rental (CMR) form to claim reimbursement from your local NHS England office.

What is ‘reconciliation’ or ‘true-up’?

The costs outlined in your Annual Charging Schedule are forecasts for the year ahead. At the end of the year, we reconcile your costs with the actual amount of facilities or services provided to your property and either bill you for the difference or add a credit note to your account. This is known as true-up, an industry standard practice that enables the calculation of any balancing charges required and provides cost transparency.