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It costs about £9,000 a year to maintain property in the UK, including minor repairs, mortgage costs, telephone and internet, insurance, council tax and public area maintenance charges.

Property taxes

While there is no universal property tax in the UK, homeowners must pay council tax which goes towards police services, local authorities and street cleaning. The amount varies by region and property value from £200 to £2,500 per year.

Leasehold owners pay ground rent of £150–500 per year on average but it can reach £5,000.

Companies owning property worth £2 million or more are subject to the Annual Residential Property Tax (ARPT) that varies from £15,000 to £140,000. Moreover, foreign legal entities pay Capital Gains Tax (CGT) of 28% on property over £2 million.

Insurance

Standard property insurance in the UK costs £150-600 a year. For instance, it will cost £540 a year to insure an apartment of £1 million with owner’s possessions worth £75,000 and jewellery that cost £25,000.

Management company fees

There are property management companies that can manage homes for owners who do not reside permanently in the UK. They pay utility bills and taxes, lease the property, maintain security around the premises whilst doing the occasional repairs. The cost will depend on the scope of work. For instance, a management company leasing the property charges 12–15% of rent income per year. If the property is not leased, the management fee will be 4–7% of the estimated annual rent.

Leasehold owners also pay the management company's fee for maintenance and repairs that can reach £4,000–5,000 in Central London for a house with a swimming pool, gym, lift and concierge service.

Utility bills

Utility bills depend on consumption and houses are equipped with electricity, water and gas meters. Utilities in London cost £1,700 per year in average.

For a one- or two-bedroom apartments water can cost up to £250–300 per year, two-bedroom house up to £350–400 per year and a three- to six-bedroom apartment from £500–800.

Electricity costs £500–1,500 per year depending on the size of the home: £500–600 for a one- or two-bedroom apartment and £600–900 for a three- or four-bedroom house. Electricity in the North of the UK is more expensive than in the South and is the cheapest in Wales (£257 per year on average). The most expensive areas are on the islands around Scotland's coasts (£419 per year on average).

Many houses and apartments have gas fireplaces and heating one room costs £140-400 per year. The rural North uses more often electric heating whereas Southern cities favour gas heating. It’s cheapest in East Anglia (£242 per year on average for one room) and most expensive in the North West (£290). A one- or two-bedroom apartment might pay £300-600 a year for gas and £600-1,000 for a three- or four-bedroom house.

Repairs

Minor repairs cost about £700 per year whereas major renovations can reach £20,000 for a three-bedroom house. For instance, it costs about £6,000 to install a heating system, £4,000 to do the plastering and £2,000 to fit the electric wiring.

Average property maintenance costs in the UK in 2013Reported by Halifax

Costs,
£/year
Variation
over 1 year, %
Maintenance and repairs 1,716 −0.4
Water 1,506 +5.6
Electricity, gas 1,727 +4.2
Home appliances 1,218 −0.6
Home and garden
tools and equipment
1,211 −2.2
Materials and services for
current repairs
1,388 +1.0
Telephone costs 1,354 +3.3
Household chemicals 1,163 +0.0
Insurance 1,352 −2.0
Mortgage 3,571 +2.2
Council tax 1,384 +0.4
Total 9,590 +1.9

Total housing maintenance costs in the UK regions for January 2013Reported by Halifax

Costs,
£/year
Variations
over 1 year, %
North East England 18,161 +3.1
North West England 19,020 +3.0
Yorkshire and Humber 18,499 +3.1
East Midlands 19,154 +2.0
West Midlands 18,779 +3.0
East Anglia 10,397 +2.5
Greater London 12,094 +2.0
South East England 10,979 +2.4
South West England 19,341 +3.0
Wales 18,097 +4.1
Scotland 18,710 +3.3
Northern Ireland 17,970 +4.8