Community service fee
Timely payment of the community service fee helps keep your community’s services ticking smoothly.
Community service fee
The community service fee (CSF) is the homeowner’s annual contribution toward the common expenditure of the community. The CSF is based on the estimated annual expenditure of the community for the operation and maintenance of its common property and assets.
Your CSF invoice gives you a detailed breakdown of how we arrive at the CSF for the year. We also send out an information pack with further details about each community relating to the previous year, with news of key events and developments.
Note: If you are a homeowner and would like to refer the latest CSF information pack, log in to this website with your credentials to read it.
What are the main components of my CSF?
It consists of day-to-day operating and administrative expenses used to maintain your community. Operational expenses include the maintenance, utility costs and management of everything from common area infrastructure and landscaping, to waste collection and signage placement.
Capital reserve fund
It was established to pay for costs incurred in the repair and replacement of significant capital items, such as elevator or chiller replacements, flooring, painting and cladding of buildings.
This is a one-off charge for items not in the design or those not covered under the general fund. For example, if you require an additional facility such as a play area or a swimming pool, the cost for this will be covered by the special levy.
Master community levy
This charge is paid through the CSF and covers items such as plants and the maintenance of the master community infrastructure including roads, underground services, storm drains, sewage lines and pavements.
Value added tax (VAT)
Value added tax (VAT) has an impact on your community service fees (CSF) as it includes several items such as maintenance services, utilities, insurance, etc. This means that the VAT collected as part of your CSF will then be paid to the Federal Tax Authority.
How VAT works:
- Homeowner – All homeowners are charged 5% VAT payable to ECM
- Emaar community management (ECM) – ECM pays 5% VAT to relevant suppliers and service providers.
- Federal Tax Authority – ECM pays the difference between the VAT collected from customers and VAT paid to suppliers to FTA. Suppliers and service providers also pay a 5% VAT to FTA.
Source: Federal Decree Law No. 8 of 2017 & Cabinet Decision No. 52 of 2017
How the community service fee is calculated
Our budgeting team considers the following aspects when calculating the community service fee (CSF).
We evaluate actual expense trends from the previous year based on individual cost items. Depending upon the operational plan, we decide whether or not to include them again in the following year’s budget.
Resource allocation on site
We periodically review resources on-site to find ways of improving performance by employing new technology and operational methods based on international best practices.
Service provider contracts
By regularly reviewing service provider contracts, we can evaluate key areas of improvement, such as performance and cost savings. This helps us to determine future budgets and predict expenses.
Capital assets evaluation (maintenance, repair and replacements)
Capital assets that are no longer under the manufacturer’s warranty are regularly reviewed for major maintenance or replacement. Essential equipment, such as sewage pumping stations and/or similar items, support the overall infrastructure of the community.
Provision for doubtful debts
This amount allows for the setting aside of a small portion of CFS collections as a provision in case certain receivables are required to be written off in the future.
Surplus/deficit adjustment from previous years
Finally, any surpluses or deficits from previous years are brought into consideration during the determination of the CSF rate for the current year.
In addition to the CSF, the community has a few other revenue streams that also contribute to its income.
Parking access cards
The cards used by residents to enter their building or parking areas are provided to homeowners at a small cost, and the income generated is credited to the community’s account.
Marketing and distribution permit fee
To ensure that only legitimate businesses gain access to the community, we regulate activity with the provision of a permit that allows the distribution of promotional material. An administration fee is collected and booked as income to the community.
To ensure adherence to the community rules and architectural codes, NOVs are issued along with violation penalties to those who fail to comply.
This is income generated from other avenues such as interest earned from call accounts or bounced cheque charges.
How can you pay?
You can pay your community service fee through a variety of easy payment methods.
- Log on to www.downtowndubai.ae from anywhere, any time.
- Online banking services (account holders only): Log on to your personal online bank account at RAKBANK, Mashreq Bank, Emirates NBD or Dubai Islamic Bank and follow the payment instructions.
- Make cheque and credit/debit card payments using our interactive payment kiosk located at the customer happiness centre in Emaar Square, Building 2.
Direct bank transfer
- Directly transfer funds from your bank account to the community bank account as detailed on the front of your CSF Invoice.
- Set up autopay instructions for payment of future invoices on their due dates.
- Please follow the online payment link on the invoice and log onto www.downtowndubai.ae for setup.
What happens if you don’t pay
Your community boasts a strong collection rate, one of the highest in the emirate. However, there are still a few homeowners who delay their payment, which ultimately affects the wider community as well as simply being unfair to those who pay promptly. If you continue to default on your payments, we may be forced to take one or all of the following actions:
- Suspension of non-emergency services to your property.
- Denial of services including non-issuance of NOC for transfer of property, visa renewal, access cards etc.
- Referral of the case to a professional debt recovery agency.
- Initiation of legal action.
As stated in the sales and purchase agreement, payment of the CSF in full and on time is the obligation of every homeowner. Delay/non-payment of the CSF has the potential to deprive your community of the funds required to continue the supply of essential services such as common area maintenance, air-conditioning, security, waste collection, street lighting and irrigation.