It’s a week or so now when there were a number 0f calls to Joe Duffy about management company issues. You can find a lot of similar sentiments raised on the Management Company forum on AskAboutMoney.com – problems with with management companies and management agents. The National Consumer Agency have even provided a website that you can reference to find out more.
However, the key question with regards to all of this is:
Are you and your fellow residents in control of your management company – has it been handed over by the developer to the residents?
Yes, we are
If you are in control of your management company, then happy days – you have full control over what your management fees will be and who your management agent is and what they should be doing for you as residents. In fact, if you’re in charge of your management company, you could even decide that you don’t need management agents if you can get a strong enough group of people to carry out the agents tasks instead. You could simply change your management agents to another company if you’re not happy.
No, we’re not
Then tough! It’s most likely that you have no control at all. If the developer of your estate is still in charge of the estate, and therefore the management company, you’re most likely going to be outvoted at any management company AGMs. Like where I live, the developer maintains a block vote that will always outvote the wishes of the residents – even if every resident did show up to an AGM and voted together.
Even getting rid of the management agents in this scenario is likely to be impossible. Chances are, as in the case of where I’m living, the management agent and the developers that are in control of the management company are very closely tied together. One would never agree to the other being changed.
Holding back on management fee payments isn’t really an option either – your contract to purchase your home includes a clause that you’ll continue paying whatever management fee is charged.
So, what can you do?
If you’re in control of your management company, you can pretty much do what you like.
If you’re not, then you’re pretty much at the mercy of the developers and their management agent buddies.