A part-time alternative to a Managing Agent?!

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    A part-time alternative to a Managing Agent?!

    Hi All, Our block is currently run by The Residents Management Committee. They have done a lot of the work themselves to date but are now looking to outsource some of it. They already have a cleaner, a gardener and an accountant but want to employ someone to liaise with the cleaner/gardener/accountant and do the remainder of the work (deal with documentation on sales and purchases, deal with the service charge, make sure the annual insurances are in place, organise necessary maintenance for the building, deal with ad hoc flat owner queries, issue invoices and receipts, deal with Companies House etc.) It is only a small block with around 20 flats over 3 floors and no lift. It wouldn’t warrant a managing agent (who might not be competent and would hike up service charges unnecessarily.) It really needs a person who may have worked at a managing agent company previously that we could employ say 1 day or ½ a day a week to keep things ticking over. Would anyone know where we might be able to find/ look for such a person? We are based in West London. Any thoughts or tips gratefully received! Many thanks in advance!


    There are a lot of managing agents that offer admin assist as well as full administration, for 20 flats approximately £140 per flat per year.


      Not really possible.
      1) agent keeps the cleaner, a gardener and an accountant "on the books" but from what you say, whoever you employ IS going to look after the WHOLE caboodle.

      Sorry, no, you want to employ some one for 1 day or ½ a day a week, so he cannot work for you 6 days a week, nor answer urgent phone calls 6 days a week.
      • Sorry, call me back in 6 days time
      • Sorry, I can only see workmen on a Wednesday, as that's the day I work.
      • Sorry, cant come out to see your problem, as I am only paid to work one day a week, and that was yesterday, come back in 6 days time.
      • Sorry, i have worked 3 days this week, so call me back in 3 weeks time.
      • Sorry, drains overflowing into your ground floor flat, not my problem till Wednesday in 3 weeks time cos worked 3 days this week.
      No, you NEED a managing agent, pure and simple, end of,


        We have a Managing Agent for 12 dwellings. The cost reflects them managing other blocks. I agree completely with ram.
        how much voluntary work do you expect ?


          It is best to pass it off to a management company.

          The starting costs would be £200 per flat (£4,000). In London, they may charge more depending on the type of block

          If you employed someone on a salaried basis £9 per hour x 7 hours x 52 weeks = £3,276. There are too many rules and regulations in leaseholder management. So unless, people are on top of it and have back up of an organisation. All you need is one rotten neighbour to cause problems over a service charge dispute or non-payment, then you need the support of a bigger organisation.

          The best estates are managed by the residents themselves.


            Thanks everyone for their responses - they are very helpful. Just to give a bit more colour in case that aids the discussion. We have a small and low maintenance block with around 20 flats and no lift. It is currently well managed by the Residents Management Committee ("RMC"). It is extremely rare that something requires immediate attention (in which case first steps could be taken by the Directors) and matters are usually dealt with in a reasonable timeframe of a couple of weeks. The RMC do not provide a 24/7 service and nor do we think that is necessary. The estimate is that if the time required was aggregated, it would probably come to 1/2 a day a week, but we appreciate it would probably be unlikely we could get someone for that, and that 1 day a week might be more realistic. The reason for seeking to delegate some of the work is that there are now few flats which are owner occupied. This website seems to be full of reviews of Managing Agents who have not done a good job, so we are also warry of that route for that reason. We also think that having 1 person with the right skill set engaged with, say some agreed timelines around response times and visits to the block, would lead to more accountability. In addition, we would like to keep on our gardener, cleaner and accountant, who have been loyal to us for many years, and who we trust, rather than have a managing agent engage "all their people". Perhaps we are a little "old school"! Against that backdrop, are there any other thoughts or ideas around how we could locate such a person with the necessary skills or how we could achieve an outcome along these lines? If the consensus is still that this is unrealistic, could anyone suggest a suitable managing agent that they can recommend and have had a good experience of in terms of service and cost? As a reminder, we are in West London. Many thanks again - all input appreciated!


              This seems to have mainly positive aspects. Consider a reputable comprehensive, builder,plumber and electrician working together for practical property care. Leaseholders able to contact and accept responsibility for payment. If a service charge expense then paid from it.
              I would suggest advertising with local job centre outlining requirements. It might well appeal to someone self employed wanting to develop a business. I understand your concerns about MAs.
              Apologies if the last sentence #4 was not to an acceptable level of courtesy. It's just that having given a lot of my time freely, to advantage of others I sometimes react wrongly. It is clear now there is a cooperative attitude. Sorry again.


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