1. What is Estate Property Management?
    A property or estate management company is responsible for looking after the maintenance of a property development, including all of the internal and external common areas. Each individual owner essentially becomes a share-holder in the management company when they purchase an apartment or a house within the development.
  2. What is the difference between the Management company and the Managing Agent?
    A management company essentially owns the common areas and is responsible for the proper operation of these areas. The Management company appoints a managing agent, such as Benchmark Property, to ensure that the management company is properly run, complies with legal obligations and that the development in good order.
  3. What are Service Charges?
    Service Charges are the annual fees that property owners pay for services provided by their housing or apartment development’s management company. These pay for the upkeep of common areas, including repairs and running costs, and other items like electricity, lifts, insurance and refuse collection.
  4. Who makes the decisions for the Management company?
    The management company initially would appoint a Board of Directors to make the decisions affecting the running of the company. This board would have the final say in important issues affecting the property, but an ad-hoc committee of owners can also play a part in the decision-making process. Benchmark Property places a lot of value in empowering members to implement the decisions affecting their homes and property.
  5. What is the Managing Agent’s Role?
    Managing agents, such as Benchmark Property, are employed by the Board of Directors to undertake the day-to-day running of the development. Part of the managing agent’s role is ensure that clients are getting the best value for money from service providers and contractors. The agent should constantly strive to improve the condition, appearance, and financial position of the property.
  6. Should we have a contract with our Agent?
    The National Consumer Agency recommends that there should be a contract in place between the managing agent and the management company of any property. We would advise any management company directors to get independent legal advice prior to signing any managing agent contract.
  7. Are we receiving a good level of service?
    We believe that the minimum standards you should expect from your managing agent are:
    • The Agent should always act in the best interests of the property owners.
    • Experience, consistency and commitment from your property manager.
    • Total financial transparency – all company expenditure should be agreed in advance by the Board.
    • Qualified and insured independent contractors who can provide services to your development.
    • No conflicts of interest with service contracts.
    • Professional Indemnity Insurance.
    • Appropriate Health & Safety procedures specific to your development.
    • Regular site inspections (twice monthly minimum) – inspection reports forwarded to the Board.
  1. What are my duties as a Company Director?
    As the director of a management company, you’ll have the same duties as another limited company director. You must always act in the best interests of the company and its members. All director duties are set out in the Companies Act 1963. The National Consumer Agency is also a good resource on the role and responsibilities of management company directors.
  2. Can we change Managing Agents?
    Yes, if you are dissatisfied with the level of service, consistency at manager level or value for money received from your managing agent, you can change your managing agent. Initially, you should bring your grievances to the attention of the directors of the management company. If you do not see an improvement in the service, you are fully within your rights to tender the contract.
  3. What communications should I be getting from our Managing Agent?
    We believe that good communication is an essential part of the efficient management of your property. Residents should receive quarterly newsletters, and notification of regular services affecting your home. Owners should receive annual general meeting notices, and an annual accounts pack.
  4. What information on my development am I entitled to?
    As a share-holder in the management company, you are entitled to view any document pertaining to the premises held by the managing agent.
  5. Why choose Benchmark Property?
    When you choose Benchmark Property, you can expect unrivalled commitment to the successful operation of your property. You’ll benefit from an experienced management team with a hands-on, professional approach.
  6. Additional Queries?If you have any more questions about the management of your development, we’re happy to assist in any way. Simply call us on (01) 214 5465 or email info@benchmarkproperty.ie