What is Property Management?
Property management under the Valuers, Appraisers and Estate Agents Act 1981 is defined as, “the management, maintenance and control of any land, building and any interest therein, excluding the management and maintenance of property based businesses, on behalf of the owner for a fee….”.
Property management involves multi facets from managing finances, tenancy management, human resource, vendor management and regulatory compliance.
There are many areas of property management that need attention of a property manager range from taking over a property, building management, maintenance management, administrative management, risk and insurance management, health, safety & emergency management, tenancy management and facilities management.
Firstly, when taking over any new property site, it is imperative to set up a systematic approach for building management and maintenance to ensure the smooth operation of the building facilities and services at the optimum operation cost.
Secondly, the property manager set up a comprehensive maintenance program of the property to cover the area of corrective and planned maintenance and line up the service provider. In term of financial management, which is a crucial function of the property management, the property manager has the fiduciary duty to manage invoicing, receipts, collecting income, service charges, monitoring outgoings, preparing budgets, maintaining financial records and reporting.
As property manager, in addition to maintenance and finance, general administrative operations are important to manage relationship with clients, tenants, management committee, residents and owners. The operations include customers service functions, maintenance of accurate and updated plans, drawings, service contracts, servicing and equipment maintenance records as well as tenant, contractors and consultants contact details, application and renewal of licenses, permits and certificates and handling of cash. An efficient administrative system should be put in place. The manager shall also assist the management committee to organize and facilitate the committee meeting and general meetings for the property management.
In any property, there is a possibility of incidents and accidents which may create emergencies and risks to occupiers and invitees. Hence, safety and well being should be a prime concern in property management. Some type of risks should be looked into, include fire, gas leaks and explosion, power failure, natural disasters, structural failure, mechanical & electrical equipment failure, corrosion & leakage, effluent & waste, infectious disease, etc.
As property managers role is to provide valuable service to owner, sometimes they are also to manage tenancy which involves aspects of billings, collection and disbursement of rents, coordination between contractors, management of utilities and services and monitoring of premises upon termination or expiry of lease.
In conclusion, the property management has fiduciary obligations to act lawfully, competently, diligently, impartially and in accordance with the client’s instruction and objectives. A good property manager shall adhere to a strict conduct with trust, integrity, fairness, honesty and professionalism with a professional standard when rendering his service to the clients.
What is Strata Management?
It is about property development scheme developed under Strata Title Act 1985 and Strata Management Act 2013 whereby the property owners collectively shares certain part of the property, i.e. common properties and facilities.
For example, within a condominium scheme, common facilities are swimming pool, visitors car park, lifts, gymnasium, meeting halls, badminton court, BBQ pit and Playground.
Strata management is a management within a community living with sharing of common property, maintaining and upgrading of common property with collection of charges, sinking funds and utilizing them for the benefit for the strata development scheme.
What are Management Body, Joint Management Body (JMB) and Management Corporation (MC)?
Management body such as JMB and MC are formed to carry out the duty of maintaining and managing the building and land intended for subdivision into parcels and common property.
When developer handover the property purchased by individual owners, the developer will manage the common property within the developer management period.
Subsequently they will handover property management such duty to JMB in the case the strata titles are yet to be issued under the Strata Management Act 2013, or MC under Strata Title Act 1985 when the Strata Title is issued and registered under the purchasers’ name.
How many types of Meetings under the care of JMB/ MC?
The are two types of general meetings, namely Annual General Meeting (AGM) and Extraordinary General Meeting EGM).
What is AGM?
It is compulsory to hold the AGM on every calendar year with invitation to all proprietors or parcel owners. AGM shall include the following agenda:
• Presentation of audited account
• Election of new committee members
• Reviewing the charges and contribution to sinking funds
• Any other agenda and proposed resolution
What is EGM?
The EGM is called upon to deliberate any proposed agenda or resolution, when receiving written direction from the Commissioner of Building, upon receiving requisition in writing made by strata owners who are entitled to at least ¼ of aggregate share units and as and when the Committee thinks fit.
Who are the Committee Members?
The members of committee shall be elected by the general meeting.
How many number of committee members are in the Committee?
At least 3 and not more than 14 persons.
What is the office bearing position within the Management Body?
Among the committee member, there shall be a Chairperson, secretary and treasurer. These three persons are known as office bearers while the rest are ordinary committee members.
How often should Management Body convey a meeting?
Shall not be more than 2 months lapse.
What is the quorum of committee meeting?
Half of the committee and not less than 2 persons.
How is the committee meeting resolution passed?
It is by way of one member one vote by simple majority and chairman has a casting vote.
What is the duty and power of the Management Body?
• To open Maintenance Account and Sinking Fund Account. The role of Management Body is to control, maintain and manage the common property.
• To impose and collect Charges subsequently deposit into Maintenance Account. They also have the duty to impose and collect Contribution to Sinking Fund and then deposit into Sinking Fund Account.
• To prepare audited financial statement
• To prepare, operate and maintain proper records of these two accounts
• To appoint and approve auditor to audit the account annually
• To file with Commissioner of Building the audited account together with auditors’s report within 14 days of the account being audited
• To utilize the money in the Maintenance Account for maintenance and management of the building and common property
• To utilize the money in Sinking Fund account for capital expenditure
• To insure the building under a damage policy and collect insurance premium from strata owners
• To comply with any order or notice given by authority
• To enforce by-laws
• To borrow money in exercising its powers or performing of its duties
• To provide security for the repayment of money borrowed (applicable to MC only)
• To acquire additional land, grant and accept easement (applicable to MC only)
• To engage Managing Agent to carry out the duties and powers of Management Body
• To prepare and maintain details and record of all Strata Owner
• To charge late payment interest
• To manage inter-floor leaking
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