5 Steps Block Managers Can Take To Improve Leaseholder Relations

Zahraa Valu

By Zahraa Valu

30 March 2017

Flats and their management are big business in the property world. The number of apartments added to Royal Mail’s Postcode Address File (PAF) jumped by 18 per cent between April and December last year, meaning that flats now make up 25 percent of property in the U.K. [1] But with growth, comes pain.

Leaseholders are growing increasingly more dissatisfied with the following issues:
So, although managing agents may soon find themselves ever more in demand, their role is becoming much harder . Here are five new approaches for agents looking to improve their leaseholder relationships:

1/ Educate Leaseholders

It might sound obvious but many leaseholders aren’t sure what responsibilities their freeholder or their managing agent have to them. Leaseholders are also unaware of how much of a say they have in the day-to-day running of communal areas. Educating leaseholders in a positive way about their rights will clear up any grey areas. It should also improve any misplaced hostility caused by leaseholders who expect things that managing agents have no responsibility to deliver.

2/ Increased transparency

This is particularly important when it comes to issues such as the service charge. Even more than value for money, leaseholders want to see accountability. So when issuing a service charge, managing agents should make sure costs are clearly broken down. There are all too many instances of leaseholders who are billed for ground rents they have already paid. There are also instances where balancing charges are mislabelled. Service charges are a contentious issue so managing agents should make sure they’re reviewed and revised thoroughly before they’re sent out.

3/ Improved consultation

While freeholders are under no obligation to consult leaseholders about the aesthetics of communal areas, it would create goodwill and better engagement if their opinions were taken into account. Often, leaseholders will have nothing to add but will appreciate having been asked. Heading off objections at a preliminary stage is also considerably easier than dealing with complaints once an action has been taken.

4/ Better Communication

Applicable across all three pain points, better communication is the fastest way for block managers to increase their standing with leaseholders. Software like Fixflo Block allows leaseholders an immediate line of communication to agents around the clock. It also maintains a complete audit trail of all interaction, in case of dispute.

5/ Swifter Action

Automating contractor contact is an efficient way to speed up repair resolutions. Maintenance management software, Fixflo Block liaises with contractors automatically ; requesting quotations, dealing with invoices and checking qualificatio ns at the click of a button. This means that managing agents aren’t limited to office hours when it comes to calling our repairmen.

Fixflo Block also brings a whole new meaning to the phrase, "if you want something done quickly , do it yourself". Through the system's in-built guidance, occupants are advised on how to fix smaller repairs themselves, helping you to streamline your workflow.

Start your free trial today by clicking here.

[1] http://www.newsontheblock.com/news-opinion/study-reveals-surge-in-number-of-flats-being-created-in-the-uk

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This article is intended for information purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. If you have any questions related to issues in this article, we strongly advise contacting a legal professional.
These blog posts are the work of Fixflo and are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License. In summary, you are welcome to re-publish any of these blog posts but are asked to attribute Fixflo with an appropriate link to www.fixflo.com. Access to this blog is allowed only subject to the acceptance of these terms.

Zahraa Valu

By Zahraa Valu

30 March 2017

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