Many residential blocks have an appointed block management company to look after communal, legal, and financial affairs, but what sets apart good block managers from those that need to step up their game? In this article we detail the top 8 things that residential block managers should be doing to keep on top of their complex.
Health and Safety
Block management companies need to ensure that their block is compliant with various health and safety laws and regulations. These include:
This includes conducting a risk assessment and management of fire-related items in the residential block, including fire alarms, fire doors, extinguishers, and escape routes.
Risk assessments of communal areas
General risk assessments must be conducted in order to comply with health and safety regulations. This includes any communal gardens, courtyards, hallways and walkways.
In line with the 1989 Electricity at Work Regulations, block managers are responsible for the repair of any loose or dangerous wiring, as well as regular electric testing in communal areas, and the repair of communal electrical items such as lifts.
It is the duty of block managers to identify any materials that may contain asbestos within their residential block. They must also create and adhere to an asbestos policy.
Block managers must be proactive in the maintenance of communal areas of residential blocks. Not only does this make the block a nice place to live, but also maintains health and safety.
Such activities may include:
- Waste Removal Services
- Prompt Repairs
An effective block management company will be responsible for a range of accounting services for the block. However, they must prove to be trustworthy and competent with such responsibilities. Many block management companies appoint the help of a qualified accountant to assist with these services:
- Collection of service charges and ground rent
- Maintaining accurate records
- Reconciliation of bank accounts
- Maintaining sufficient funds in the management accounts
- Preparing and monitoring budgets
- Allocation of resources
Great communication between the block management company, tenants, and owners is imperative to ensure smooth running of the complex. It is the responsibility of the block manager to keep tenants and owners informed of the goings on in the building, and also to act as a go-between for tenants and landlords.
A good level of communication and rapport can also help to resolve any disputes between tenants living in the building, and tenants and their landlords.
Keeping Up-to-Date With Legislation
Residential block management companies must ensure to keep up-to-date with any new legislation or changes to existing legislation that will affect the management of the block. Not keeping up to date with legislation risks leaving themselves liable to the relevant consequences.
Keeping on top of insurance is a key aspect of a block manager’s role. This involves:
- Managing buildings insurance for each resident
- Ensuring that the terms and conditions of all policies are adhered to
- Ensuring that all policies are in-date and valid
- Managing claims
Regular inspections are crucial to ensure that the block is kept in good condition to protect the health, safety, and wellbeing of residents. It also ensures that the block looks appealing to prospective new residents.
Block managers should be regularly inspecting communal areas such as hallways and corridors, gardens, pathways, and parking areas, but at the discretion of property owners, they may also be charged with the inspection of individual units.
Lease Enforcement & Compliance
Within a residential block, individual units will likely have different lease terms to which owners need to stay on top of. Block management companies ensure that both the tenant and the owner of the property comply with the terms and conditions set out in the lease or contract. This involved:
- Ensuring any payments are made on time
- Ensuring that the property is kept to an agreed standard
- Handling disputes appropriately
- Handling moving in and moving out arrangements
Check out our blog on lease enforcement for more information about this subject.
Residential Block Management in Leeds
Valor Properties offers residential block property management services in Leeds and across West Yorkshire. Get in touch with us today to learn more about our block management services, and how we can help you keep on top of your residential complex.