Property management professional vs self-management – finding the best fit

Although most sectional title developments in South Africa are managed by professional management companies, which handle day-to-day operations and necessary processes, some owners and bodies corporate opt for self-management.

“Ultimately, this decision should be based on finding the best fit, and whether the chosen route will maintain and improve the value of the property,” says David Rebe, chief executive of Sandak-Lewin Property Trust.

“Bodies corporate often choose to self-manage as it is a cheaper option and offers a personal experience with property owners. However, without a management company, the body corporate needs to source relevant contractors for services like plumbing and electrical work themselves, which takes time and a lot of effort from all parties involved. The members of the body corporate are also sometimes not familiar with suppliers and contractors, and cannot guarantee quality workmanship.

“In order to self-manage efficiently, the body corporate needs to know exactly what is required to maintain a scheme, and must have the time, knowledge, experience and resources to do so.”

Rebe says that self-management includes keeping up-to-date with legislation, such as the Sectional Title Act and other necessary laws, maintaining the required documents such as minute books, proportional quotas, applications for extensions and a host of other administrative tasks, all the while remaining friendly yet professional with body corporate members, enforcing rules, and dealing with all maintenance issues.

He says that management companies provide owners with access to all the necessary resources and staff who are able to assist with queries and the management of the property as well as the necessary policies and documents including participation quotas, insurance schedules, debtors’ schedules, minute books, conduct rules, management rules and other issues. He says that management companies also have extensive lists of tried and tested vendors and contractors at hand.

“It may not be as difficult to self-manage smaller, low-maintenance developments consisting of six or fewer units, provided that all owners are all on good terms. An alternative option for the body corporate is a collaboration of options, whereby the administrative tasks are handled internally and levy collections, legal issues and the handling of complaints and emergencies are outsourced to an experienced management company.”

Rebe says that certain aspects need to be taken into consideration when hiring a managing agent, as the size and scale of the sectional title scheme as well as the budget available to outsource this service will affect the decision. He says that issues can become increasingly frustrating over time and takes away from other important tasks, especially if the members of the body corporate are not experts in this field, and the solution often leans towards hiring a professional who has the level of experience needed for the job.

“The benefit of making use of experienced, efficient and competent property managers is that these specialists ensure that the property investment is managed correctly, and that the property is kept in good condition at minimal cost,” he says.

  Comment on this Article

  Please login to post comments

Post to my facebook wall
Characters remaining

    Latest Property News
    • 23 May 2018
      Homeowners who are thinking of selling and “trading up” to a bigger or a better home had better be quick now if they want to get the best deal.
    • 23 May 2018
      The new Loftus Park development in Arcadia is really going to boost the demand for homes and rental accommodation close by and the neighbouring suburb of Sunnyside, says Gerhard Kotzé, MD of estate agency group RealNet Holdings.
    • 23 May 2018
      The importance of correctly pricing a property for sale is more imperative than ever. This is according to Debbie Justus-Ferns, divisional manager of Renprop Residential Sales, who says that despite this crucial selling fact being emphasised so often, in the current market, many sellers are still expecting unrealistic prices for their homes which is having a negative impact on the ultimate sale price.
    • 22 May 2018
      Extreme weather appears to be the new normal, evident by the volume of insurance-related disputes reaching the industry watchdog’s desk. To avoid a situation in which your insurer refuses to pay up, you should proactively ensure that your home is well-maintained and ready for whatever winter has in store.
    • 22 May 2018
      As the impact of technology on the real estate industry becomes more significant, it is clear that there is a need for an objective look at not only traditional real estate models but also online and other alternative low-commission real estate agencies, to examine what they offer and what their impact might be.
    • 22 May 2018
      According to Adrian Goslett, Regional Director and CEO of RE/MAX of Southern Africa, dealing with some sort of neighbour dispute is an unavoidable part of life unless, perhaps, you choose to live on a remote small holding for the rest of your life.
    • 22 May 2018
      Buyers feel that they are getting value for money in the Northcliff area without having to compromise on aesthetics and amenities
    • 21 May 2018
      Secure living is one of the growing property trends in South Africa and Nooitgedacht Estate in Stellenbosch certainly ticks the right boxes for buyers who want a secure, exclusive lifestyle in one of the Boland’s most sought-after estates, says Pam Golding Properties.
    Subscribe to the MyProperty Newsletter

    Last Name  
    Email Address  
    Email Frequency
    Share this Page

    For Sale Property
    Rental Property
    More Options
    Connect with us