In short the answer is yes and there are criminal sanctions for failing to comply.
Once a landlord or management company has demanded a service charge payment, the tenants have a statutory right to:
A tenant can ask the landlord to provide a written summary of the costs incurred in the last accounting period, or if accounts are not made up for a 12 month period, the 12 months before the tenants’ request.
The landlord must comply with the request on the later of one month after the request or six months after the end of the accounting period.
The summary must be certified by a qualified accountant where service charge costs are payable by tenants of more than 4 dwellings.
The landlord is to provide the tenant with facilities to inspect and take copies of the accounts, receipts and other documents that support the summary.
Failure to comply is a criminal offence and the landlord can be fined up to a maximum of £2,500.
Read our next blog in this series next week to find out whether service charges have to be reasonable and what applications can be made to a Tribunal.