Property management is a field where specialised managers take care of the administration of a property on behalf of owners. Historically they operated out of real estate agencies; collecting rent, paying bills, dealing with tenant disputes, organising repairs and improvements, compiling and summarising expenses, advertising for tenants, vetting tenancy applications, drawing up tenancy agreement contracts, making changes to the property (e.g. window locks) to comply with new regulations, and carrying out regular property inspections.
A strata scheme can also hire a property manager, known as a strata manager or caretaker or resident manager, to help with the day-to-day running of the building. They can assist the owners corporation with:
- The management of common property, such as implementing by-laws
- Controlling the use of common property by tradespersons, visitors, delivery people and other non-residents
- Duties such as concierge, security, cleaning, repair and maintenance of common property
- The correspondence regarding the building, be it from existing tenants, inspectors, owners or prospective buyers. They often assist in arranging quotes and hire tradespeople to carry out works on the building, submit insurance claims, and keep a record of all activities that are carried out in relation to the property so that all expenditure can be accounted for and financial statements be drafted.
If the strata manager also acts as an on-site residential property manager, they need to be licensed.
Before being appointed, building managers must disclose:
- If the person is connected with the original owner
- Any direct or indirect monetary interest in the strata scheme
If an agreement is made between the original owner and the building manager during the initial period, the agreement typically ends at the first Annual General Meeting (AGM). At the first AGM a new building manager can be hired or transferred to another person.
A building manager agreement is usually limited to 10 years (in NSW) but it can be renewed. An agreement can be terminated if voted at a general meeting of the owners corporation.
An owners corporation can apply to the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal to resolve a dispute with a building manager. The Tribunal can:
- Terminate an agreement
- Require payment of compensation by a party to the agreement
- Change, confirm or declare invalid the terms and conditions of the agreement
- Dismiss the application
The Tribunal can terminate an agreement due to:
- Unsatisfactory performance
- A harsh, oppressive, unconscionable or unreasonable agreement
- The building manager failing to disclose an interest
At the bottom of this profile are brief details of a number of the experts that Expert Experts represents. Call our office to discuss your requirements and to obtain a recommendation that suits your needs and budget.
Expertise in Action
An expert in property and strata management will be able to offer opinions on the reasonableness of manager agreements and to comment on aspects of specific management schemes and disputes, comparing them to industry norms and whether breaches in regulations have occurred.
For some fields of expertise we have some sample sections of de-identified reports. Please contact our office if you are interested in a sample.
The overall cost of expert opinion depends on the services required. Some of the key factors that affect the cost of advice include:
- The need for a view or inspection of a location
- The quantity of documentary material to be reviewed
- Whether there are reports of other experts to be reviewed and commented on in detail
- Whether there is a need for conferences with the expert either in person or by telephone/Skype