What is a Block Manager and what are their responsibilities

What is a Block Manager?

Property Block Management is the process of managing a number of residential properties within the same building.

This includes:

  • collecting service charges and ground rents
  • organising works and maintenance on the property (like:
    • internal cleaning,
    • external cleaning,
    • gardening,
    • tree care,
    • emergency works
    • plumbing and electricians,
    • painting and decorating, etc.

Managing a block of flats requires specific skills and knowledge and the commitment to the job. A poorly managed property can have an impact on the long-term enjoyment of your home. Potentially, also on its future value. So, as a leaseholder, you should know how your building is being managed and who it is being managed by.

It’s normally the landlord who is responsible for the overall management of the building. This could be an individual person, a company or a local authority. It could even be the leaseholders themselves if a residents’ management company (RMC) is in place.
Some landlords choose to manage the building themselves. However, it’s more common for them to appoint a professional managing agent to manage and maintain the property on their behalf. Choose if you might need to hire one, taking our “I need a Property Manager” quiz! 

Why should you use a Block Manager?

Managing a block of flats requires a professional approach and the time to do it.

A Block manager will have a good knowledge of

  • landlord and tenant law,
  • building construction,
  • health and safety regulations,
  • basic accounting and a range of other skills.

Managing agents take instructions from the landlord, not the individual leaseholders. Nonetheless, a good managing agent will always be aware of the requirements and wishes of the flat owners. Indeed, a managing agent plays an important part in your life as a leaseholder and the smooth running of your building.
Whoever appoints the managing agent, as a leaseholder you pay for their services through your service charges. For this reason, it is in your best interest to have a professional and experienced agent who does the job well.

What is a Block Manager responsible for?

Some of the property management duties and responsibilities are:

  • be knowledgeable
  • have a full understanding of the structure and meaning of leases,
  • have a thorough knowledge of relevant Landlord and Tenant legislation,
  • help you understand your rights and obligations,
  • be professional,
  • committed to best practice,
  • committed to good customer service,
  • comply with relevant standards and codes of practice,
  • operate an independent complaints procedure,
  • be subject to external scrutiny,
  • be transparent,
  • able to provide full accounting facilities for budgeting, service charge and year-end accounting and give you access to accounts
  • support you and your fellow leaseholders in ensuring that service charge money is spent wisely.

Check our Property and Home Management services here.

Please contact Pelin Martin regarding block management queries or to book your 30-minute free property consultation on +0208 994 7327 – pm@bluecrystallondon.co.uk

Discover the West London Property Networking

 

Importance of sum insured on a rental property -Manage my property London

The sum insured is the maximum amount the insurance company will pay to rebuild your investment in the event of a claim. These policies use the size, type, location, age of your home as the basis for the cover. The change to a “sum insured” policy means you will still be covered for the costs of rebuilding your rental home but there will be a maximum amount payable, called the “sum insured”. Your insurance company will only pay the costs up to the sum insured. If it costs more than the sum insured to rebuild your home, you will have to make up the shortfall. The sum, insured should be increased by 4% every year to keep up with present housing costs. You are better of over insuring than under insuring.

The sum insured is the maximum amount your insurance company will pay in the event that your home is totally destroyed or badly damaged. There is no guarantee that the sum insured will be sufficient to cover the costs of rebuilding your home. The sum insured is not the price you paid for your home, or the rates valuation. The price you paid also includes the value of land and reflects the market value of your home, rather than the replacement cost. The market value of your home will not equate with what it costs to rebuild it.

Typically, house insurance will cover the costs of rebuilding your home and other features or buildings that make up your home. Features can include driveways, fences and swimming pools.

The sum insured is the maximum amount the insurance company will pay to rebuild your investment in the event of a claim. These policies use the size, type, location, age of your home as the basis for the cover. The change to a “sum insured” policy means you will still be covered for the costs of rebuilding your rental home but there will be a maximum amount payable, called the “sum insured”. Your insurance company will only pay the costs up to the sum insured. If it costs more than the sum insured to rebuild your home, you will have to make up the shortfall. The sum, insured should be increased by 4% every year to keep up with present housing costs. You are better of over insuring than under insuring.

How to avoid tenancy void periods?

The sum insured is the maximum amount your insurance company will pay in the event that your home is totally destroyed or badly damaged. There is no guarantee that the sum insured will be sufficient to cover the costs of rebuilding your home. The sum insured is not the price you paid for your home, or the rates valuation. The price you paid also includes the value of land and reflects the market value of your home, rather than the replacement cost. The market value of your home will not equate with what it costs to rebuild it.

Long Distance Property Rental

Typically, house insurance will cover the costs of rebuilding your home and other features or buildings that make up your home. Features can include driveways, fences and swimming pools.

Top 10 tips on buying an investment property

Insurance policies usually also cover additional costs associated with the rebuild, such as professional fees, demolition costs and costs of meeting current building standards.
Your insurance policy will give details of what will and will not be included in your sum insured. It is important to read your policy carefully to understand what it covers.

Tips on keeping tenants happy

Please contact Pelin Martin to book your free 30 minute property consultation

+0208 994 7327

pm@bluecrystallondon.co.uk

 

What is a guaranteed rental scheme?

This scheme works on the basis of an agent taking on a property and setting up a scheme that allows them to sublet the property to tenants chosen by them. These schemes tend to pay less rent than the true market value though they do have advantages and disadvantages to the landlord.

Benefits of the scheme

  • No void periods as the guaranteed rent allows the landlords to receive the rent every month even though it is unoccupied
  • Companies who run this scheme tend to pay for any certificates required or maintenance needs that occurs within the property.
  • Companies who run this scheme tend to manage the property allowing the landlord to save on property management costs.
  • Allows the landlord to be carefree, If the landlord is abroad, busy with their career or simply do not have the time and not in a position to deal with rentals, agents, maintenance, responsibilities.

Disadvantages of the scheme

  • There is a chance there may not be any void periods and could be rented at a higher level of rent than currently paid by the scheme.
  • You may not be pleased with the works done in the property though this is a risk landlords take when choosing a managing agent.

If you have any questions regarding guaranteed rental schemes or would like to have a 30 minute free property consultation please contact Pelin Martin on

+0208 994 7327

pm@bluecrystallondon.co.uk

 

How do property auctions work?

You need to know how do property auctions work if you want to make sure you won’t make any mistake when it buying at a property auction.

How do property auctions work: the Prerequisites.

You need to have 10% deposit ready on the day of the auction, also you need to complete within 28 days. You need to be all set. Check out the guidelines for buy to let success

1. Do your research

Find out about upcoming auctions in your area and find out the best auction companies, established and respected.

2. View the property

Try to see the property a few times and only proceed if you’re really sure it’s what you want. Is it the right location, size, condition, type of property? Have a checklist and only proceed if it ticks all your boxes. Check out the guidelines to where to invest?

3. Talk to a mortgage adviser

Do your market research, speak with a few mortgage brokers and  get an agreement in principle, so you can be sure you can afford the amount you’re bidding. You will need to have a valuation conducted before the day of the auction.

4. Make legal checks

Study the property particulars carefully, reading all of the small print. If you’re satisfied, send them to your conveyancer and ask them to carry out the usual searches, enquiries and title checks. a lot of the times, vendor`s solicitor will carry out the searches and send a copy to your solicitor.

5. Arrange a property survey

You should always have a survey done, auctions are a perfect place for a seller, who may be trying to offload a property with serious structural issues.

6. Decide on a price limit before you bid

Find out what other, similar properties in the same area have recently sold for. So, you can make an informed decision on how much you’re willing to pay. Being outbid may mean that you lose the money spent on the survey and solicitor, but that’s a small loss compared with paying thousands of pounds more than the house is really worth.

Bidding before the property auction

If you’ve found your ideal property and done the appropriate research, it’s not always necessary to wait until the auction to make an offer. However, early bidding can be a gamble because, if the auctioneer rejects your offer, you’ll have already shown your hand to them.

If you do manage to agree on a deal before the auction you’ll need to work extra fast. In fact, contracts must be exchanged several days before the auction.

Please contact Pelin Martin for your free 30-minute property consultation on +0208 994 7327 – pm@bluecrystallondon.co.uk