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Property Factors (Scotland) Act 2011: Code of conduct for Property Factors

Published: 13 Jul 2012
ISBN:
9781780459455

The code of conduct part of the Property Factors (Scotland) Act 2011 which property factors are required to abide to.

20 page PDF

237.0kB

20 page PDF

237.0kB

Contents
Property Factors (Scotland) Act 2011: Code of conduct for Property Factors
SECTION 1:WRITTEN STATEMENT OF SERVICES

20 page PDF

237.0kB

SECTION 1:WRITTEN STATEMENT OF SERVICES

You must provide each homeowner with a written statement setting out, in a simple and transparent way, the terms and service delivery standards of the arrangement in place between you and the homeowner. If a homeowner applies to the homeowner housing panel for a determination in terms of section 17 of the Act, the Panel will expect you to be able to show how your actions compare with the written statement as part of your compliance with the requirements of this Code.

You must provide the written statement:

  • to any new homeowners within four weeks of agreeing to provide services to them;
  • to any new homeowner within four weeks of you being made aware of a change of ownership of a property which you already manage;
  • to existing homeowners within one year of initial registration as a property factor. However, you must supply the full written statement before that time if you are requested to do so by a homeowner (within four weeks of the request) or by the homeowner housing panel (within the timescale the homeowner housing panel specifies);
  • to any homeowner at the earliest opportunity (not exceeding one year) if there are any substantial changes to the terms of the written statement.

1.1a For situations where the land [2] is owned by the group of homeowners

The written statement should set out:

A. Authority to Act

a. a statement of the basis of any authority you have to act on behalf of all the homeowners in the group [3] ;
b. where applicable, a statement of any level of delegated authority, for example financial thresholds for instructing works, and situations in which you may act without further consultation;

B. Services Provided

c. the core services that you will provide. This will include the target times for taking action in response to requests for both routine and emergency repairs and the frequency of property inspections (if part of the core service);
d. the types of services and works which may be required in the overall maintenance of the land in addition to the core service, and which may therefore incur additional fees and charges (this may take the form of a "menu" of services) and how these fees and charges are calculated and notified;

C. Financial and Charging Arrangements

e. the management fee charged, including any fee structure and also processes for reviewing and increasing or decreasing this fee;
f. what proportion, expressed as a percentage or fraction, of the management fees and charges for common works and services each owner within the group is responsible for. If management fees are charged at a flat rate rather than a proportion, this should be stated;
g. confirmation that you have a debt recovery procedure which is available on request, and may also be available online (see Section 4: Debt recovery);
h. any arrangements relating to payment towards a floating fund, confirming the amount, payment and repayment (at change of ownership or termination of service);
i. any arrangements for collecting payment from homeowners for specific projects or cyclical maintenance, confirming amounts, payment and repayment (at change of ownership or termination of service);
j. how often you will bill homeowners and by what method they will receive their bills;
k. how you will collect payments, including timescales and methods (stating any choices available).Any charges relating to late payment, stating the period of time after which these would be applicable (see Section 4: Debt recovery);

D. Communication Arrangements

l. your in-house complaints handling procedure (which may also be available online) and how homeowners may make an application to the homeowner housing panel if they remain dissatisfied following completion of your in-house complaints handling procedure (see Section 7: Complaints resolution);
m. the timescales within which you will respond to enquiries and complaints received by letter or e-mail;
n. your procedures and timescales for response when dealing with telephone enquiries;

E. Declaration of Interest

o. a declaration of any financial or other interests (for example, as a homeowner or lettings agent) in the land to be managed or maintained;

F. How to End the Arrangement

p. clear information on how to change or terminate the service arrangement including signposting to the applicable legislation. This information should state clearly any "cooling off" period, period of notice or penalty charges for early termination.

1.1b Alternative standards for situations where the land is owned by a land maintenance company or a party other than the group of homeowners

The written statement should set out:

A. Authority to Act

a. a statement of the legal basis of the arrangement between you and the homeowner;
b. a description of the use and location of the area of land to be maintained, including a map where possible (this information must be kept up-to-date);

B. Services Provided

c. The services that you will provide. This will include the minimum service delivery standards that can be expected and the target times for taking action in response to requests for both routine and emergency repairs. Any work or services which are a requirement of the property titles should also be stated;

C. Financial and Charging Arrangements

d. how many properties contribute towards maintenance costs for the area of land maintained;
e. confirmation that you have a debt recovery procedure which is available on request, and may also be available online (see Section 4: Debt recovery);
f.any arrangements relating to payment towards a floating fund, confirming the amount, payment and repayment (at change of ownership or termination of service);
g. any arrangements for funds for specific projects or cyclical maintenance, confirming amounts, payment and repayment (at change of ownership or termination of service);
h. any services or works that may incur additional fees and charges, including when or how they may arise (this may take the form of a "menu" of services) and details of how these fees and charges are calculated and notified;
i. how often you will bill homeowners and by what method they will receive their bills;
j. how you will collect payments, including timescales and methods (stating any choices available). Any charges relating to late payment, stating the period of time after which these would be applicable (see Section 4: Debt recovery);

D. Communication Arrangements

k. your in-house complaints handling procedure (which may also be available online) and how homeowners may make an application to the homeowner housing panel if they remain dissatisfied after completing your in-house complaints handling procedure (see Section 7: Complaints resolution);
l. the timescales within which you will respond to enquiries and complaints received by letter or e-mail;
m. your procedures and timescales for response when dealing with telephone enquiries;

E. Declaration of Interest

n. a declaration of any financial or other interests (for example, ownership) in the land to be managed;

F. How to End the Arrangement

o. clear information on how to change or terminate the service arrangement between you and the homeowner, including signposting to the applicable legislation. This information should state clearly any "cooling off" period, period of notice or penalty charges for early termination.


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