Every resident of the housing society or gated community has to pay maintenance charges. These maintenance charges have to be paid either monthly, quarterly, half-yearly or annually to the society bank account for the maintenance of the common area. Such maintenance charges depend upon multiple factors and vary from society to society. Every Resident Welfare Association, Cooperative Housing Society, or Owners Welfare Association must take this amount to maintain the apartment complex.
In the Housing society, maintenance charges are collected to meet the well-being of the society and these funds can be used for repairs and maintenance of the building of the society. Every Society should levy maintenance charges as per byelaws. Housing society Byelaws provides quite a simple method of charging a maintenance charge.
In this method few heads are Charged based on square feet: This calculation method is used when the apartments are of different scales for E.g. if the rate per square feet maintenance charge for an apartment complex is Rs. 1.5 per sq feet per month. Therefore, if someone owns an apartment of 1000 sq. ft, then the maintenance charge is Rs 1500 per month. And by the same calculation, a person owning an apartment of 2000 sq. ft would pay a maintenance charge of Rs. 3000 per month.
Another method is simple where a fixed amount is charged on all apartments and it works well if all apartments have equal sizes but unfair with different size
The management committee must generate the maintenance bill for every flat in the housing complex. If management committee failed to provide the invoice for the maintenance charges than society member has a right to demand a maintenance bill with all proper heads from the management committee so that they can see their contribution towards maintenance charges.
READ MORE: Maintenance Charges in a Housing Society: A complete guide
Resident welfare association bye-laws differ in the state, but the basic anatomy is the same. The state of Maharashtra, permutations, and combinations which be followed by other States set the most detailed guidelines on maintenance charges.
Service Charges: For utilities including but not limited to, electricity in open areas, watchmen, elevator staff, cleaning crew, and gardeners: all charges for the purchase of services and amenities. Society members borne service charges equally.
Property Tax: The governing body of the organization shall assess the emergency fund for unforeseeable circumstances subject to a minimum annual construction cost of 0.25% of each apartment.
Water Charges: Mandatory for all residents, the charges are based on the total number and size of inlets provided in each flat.
Repair and Maintenance Charges: All construction components such as roads, pumps, irrigation, height, tanks, generators, streetlights, protective equipment, and more are protected. Rates shall be fixed by the governing body of the company; the expense of the buildings in each flat for usual periodic reparations shall be subject to a minimum of 0.75% annually.
Lift Repair Charges: All Maintenance of lift operations and its maintenance are borne equally by the society members
Parking charges: Applicable to vehicle owners. charges depend on the society’s fixed rates (usually vary for two-wheelers and four-wheelers).
non-occupancy charges: Non-occupancy Charges shall be paid only when the flat or unit has a sublet by a cooperative society. Such unoccupied occupancy charges do not exceed 10% of service charges by a cooperative company only where a flat or unit is subtle. More than 10% of charges are fraudulent and unauthorized and are a violation of court orders.
Sinking Fund: The governing body of the organization shall assess the emergency fund for unforeseeable circumstances subject to a minimum annual construction cost of 0.25% of each apartment.
Lease/rent charges: This is based on the built-up area of each flat / unit.
Other charges: As decided by the governing body of the society as and when needed.
Whether you call it Apartments owners association, resident welfare association, cooperative housing society, maintenance charges must be paid by all the owners, tenants, even if the apartment is vacant too. If required, the general body may take a decision on the reduction or ask for concessional maintenance charges on unoccupied or unsold flats and implement the same.
In a rented flat, who pays for the maintenance charges, the owner, or the tenant?
Maintenance cost considered an essential factor in a rent agreement. To prevent disputes between tenant and owner, specifics of maintenance costs should be listed in the rental agreement.
A tenant pays the maintenance charges when the Flat is rented. All facilities are enjoyed by tenants such as the water, electricity, gas, and other services, such as fitness centers, the swimming pool, the clubhouse, and children’s playgrounds. Hence payment towards such maintenance is paid by the tenant only.
The maintenance charges must be paid by all the owners, tenants, and also If the apartment is vacant too. … If Necessary then the general body may take a decision on the reduction or ask for concessional maintenance charges on unoccupied or unsold flats and implement the same.
Society Byelaws empowers the management committee of the society to contact the society registrar to recover fees. Once the Registrar’s Office issues a certificate, a recovery officer may take action that may extend to the attachment or auction of your property.
If a bill is prepared for maintenance of a housing society, it must be approved by the Annual General Meeting of the Housing society or by the majority vote of the co-operative society. While Charging the maintenance fees, proper guidelines should be followed under Byelaws. Charges raised should be legally viable and no other expenses like celebrating Diwali or other events should be included
Besides the demand for maintenance billing of essential services, if any demand is raised without the approval of an Annual General Meeting (AGM) or Special General Meeting (SGM) that can be challenged in the court of law.
Housing societies and regulation byelaws adhere to the cooperative act or other society law followed in the region. A society may create its own society laws but must not contradict the societies Registration Act of the concerned state
In most cases, however, society uses the state bylaws provided in connection with the regulations of the laws and provisions on housing societies. Changes to these social regulations are periodically enacted. The laws of housing societies are extremely versatile as they are often changed in accordance with members’ desires and conveniences. Subsequently, if required then housing society members can raise a complaint against their managing committee to the Registrar of co-operative societies through which legal proceedings can be followed.
Residential society makes no profit from the expenses for repairs and maintenance. Members should understand the value of paying maintenance charges on time who do not pay regularly. Society makes no profit from the maintenance charges. It helps in Society Maintenance and Financial Management and improves the safety and security of society residents. For any reason, members are not allowed to keep the maintenance charges.
Under the Goods and Services Tax(GST) Regime, if the aggregate of Society maintenance charges levied by the housing society exceeded Rs 20 lakhs in a financial year, it must register itself under the GST laws and obtain a registration number.
To collect GST from the members, the housing society should also keep in their minds exempted items like property tax and electricity charges. So, if the aggregate of the charges during a financial (whether subject to GST or not) exceeds Rs 20 lakhs. Even though the threshold limit for registration is Rs 20 lakhs for a housing society, it is not required to levy GST, if the amount of maintenance charge for each of the flat or office does not exceed Rs 7,500 for a month.
Society would not charge GST on all the components paid by the members of the invoice. The housing society cannot levy GST on charges which are reimbursement of expenses incurred by the society and recovered from members. May includes various taxes, municipal taxes, property tax, water bills, non-agricultural land tax, electricity bills for common areas, etc. by the members. The subsidy to the sinking fund is likewise exempt from GST. The housing society must therefore tax GST on members’ contribution to the repair’s funds.
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