How to stop block manager getting mates in for major works?

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    How to stop block manager getting mates in for major works?

    We own 2 of 5 leasehold flats in a victorian block. We are 2 RTM directors and there’s another 1 RTM member. The 2 other flats are owned by faceless corporation. Two years ago our block Management presented the leaseholders with quotes for major works. The RTM directors had provided two trusted contractors who quoted £55k and £45k each. Out of nowhere the block manager brought in a much lower quote of £35k from an unknown contractor. He had waited for our quotes to come in and got their builder mate in to quote massively cheaper.

    The 3 other leaseholders naturally nominated the cheapest in a majority vote. The works were unsurprisingly shoddy with many faults we are now having to rectify at further cost. The amount of checking and negotiating with these cowboy builders was a time and energy sapping nightmare.

    How can we avoid the block manager getting their builder mates to quote again with new major works this year?

    The two RTM directors are united in wanting the best for the building and the 3rd rtm member always prefers the cheapest option but can be persuaded to go for wisest option. Can the RTM basically insist on which contractors are allowed to quote to the leaseholders? I understand that all leaseholders are permitted to suggest contractors but aside from the two RTM directors, the rest are absent landlords who never bother. The question is, is the block manager permitted to put forward his contractor mate? And what with their track record of providing shoddy contractors, can we insist that the block manager remove their chosen contractor from the quote list? Thanks!

    #2
    Do you have an external managing agent for the RTM property? If so what does the contract say? eg about external/major works

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      #3
      Umm.. they work for you. The managing agent does not get to decide who does works. You do.

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        #4
        Ah but once the block manager, who we the RTM hired, has sent out a notice to the leaseholders with the quotes written on it, the leaseholders always choose the cheapest by majority vote. What I’m asking is, does the block management have any rights to put forward a quote from a contractor they have sourced?

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          #5
          It is normal for MAs put out tender bids to external builders/contractors on major works as leaseholders are often disinclined to invest their own time in such matters.

          If they nominate a familiar builder who has done work for them before... so be it

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            #6
            In our case we are inclined to organise the quotes and we are actually disinclined for the MA to put forward tenders. I need the rules on that.

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              #7
              The rules will be in the contract you signed with your MA.

              If you don't like those rules - you could possibly terminate the MA's contract and advise future MA that the RTM company will decide on who carries out any major external works in the future.

              Such large quotes- were you having a roof replaced?

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                #8
                Look at the MA's contract. He should be following your instructions. He is employed by RMC. Perhaps decide 3 quotes from firms nominated by RMC, not the MA. Also no quotes to be opened until a set date. If shoddy work he should be held accountable, but not his decision.

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                  #9
                  Callan1,

                  Right! I’m going to do that thanks. Yes roof works on a huge conservation area building, rendering, drain rerouting, new paths. But still insane prices!

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                    #10
                    scot22,

                    Ooh yes. That is great thanks!

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                      #11
                      The quotes do not need to be sent to the MA, you can insist that they are sent to the directors, You are not obliged to accept the lowest quote and you can make a recommendation that the leaseholders accept a higher quote. You should be transparent otherwise MAs have been known to try to undermine directors by contacting leaseholders directly.

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                        #12
                        Yes! Thank you. I can go forward confidently now.

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