News

Familiar face rejoins property administration team


This month we see our property management team joined by a familiar face. Nearly two years ago, property administrator Abi Gumble took a self-directed sabbatical to travel. The company was sad to see her go as she was a valued and dedicated member of the team. 

Upon her return recently Abi realised how much she enjoyed working for us and contacted us requesting the opportunity for returning to her role or a similar position. We were delighted to hear from her and Abi has now re-joined the property management department once more in an administrative and client support capacity

Abi has now rejoined Block Management UK at a time of growth and development. Her experience in helping customers will now be applied using new software and systems. Firstly, the mri software system Qube PM will make an enormous difference to her working day and the way she is able to help administer our portfolio of properties. And, more recently, our new Vodafone phone system..
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(21 October 2021 )

Housebuilders: The importance of having your sales staff and managing agent work together


From our Business Development Manager, Fiona DuCasse:

With a new development comes the issue of how it should be handed over and managed for the benefit of yourself and your residents. With this in mind, I thought you might like to read a recent article I wrote on behalf of property developers who have enquired about our services.  

 
At some point in a new development, your on-site sales staff and your managing agent will be at the location at the same time, liaising with customers or potential customers. Perhaps the customers will know the difference between the two, perhaps they won’t. 
 
It’s for sure that both sales staff and the agent will field questions best suited for the other or refer to the other. A united front and a cohesive approach to dealing with residents would help during this transitional period in the life of your development.
 
We suggest:
 
Open communication – ma..
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(19 October 2021 )

New Management Instruction: period warehouse conversion in historic Whitechapel


Block Management UK have taken on management of our first East End property with the acquisition of Tate Apartments in London's historic Whitechapel area. This period warehouse conversion sits in a tiny, cobbled alley coming off the bustling Cannon Street Road and the units display typical features of a former commercial property including crittall windows, open plan living and tall ceilings. 

The building has an entry phone system that leads to a communal lobby and access to the flats arranged over four storeys. 

With the residents remonstrating that the outgoing agents did not communicate or act when addressing maintenance repairs, we have our work cut out for us dealing with outstanding issues. These include the refurbishment of home furnishings in the communal areas, boxing in gas meters and redecoration of the basement.
 
 

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(08 October 2021 )

Block Management UK Ltd acts fast on behalf of RTM property with no agent in place

Block Management UK has been appointed as the new managing agent of a Hounslow, west London property that recently went RTM (right to manage).
This property became RTM as of June 2021 with over 70% of the leaseholders participating. They had chosen to go down the route of RTM due to their belief that the agent fees were excessive and that they had received poor service.

Our new, dedicated Business Integration Manager is now coordinating the handover process. Whilst we understand a new client’s desire to push through the handover process as quickly as possible, we always make new clients aware that their patience is required over the handover period whilst we set up our systems and contracts and liaise with the previous managing agent. 

As the new managing agent, we cannot force the previous agents to speed up their delivery of the property details. So we cannot begin full management experience without this information. 
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(25 August 2021 )

Developer of attractive Horsforth mews appoints Block Management UK Ltd to manage


The developer of a mews development in the West Yorkshire town of Horsforth has chosen Block Management UK to manage.

Block Management UK reviewed the developer’s leases and advised on accountancy matters. We advised their lease had an unnecessary level of accounting fees and that getting accounts certified rather than pursuing an optional audit would be a more economical option.

Mews houses are an attractive option, with some being very pretty, self-contained places to live. However, they can share issues of access, parking and close-quarter living.

The property joins our portfolio of management instructions across West Yorkshire including properties in Wakefield, Bradford and Halifax.



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(19 August 2021 )

Retiring Director hands reins over to Block Management UK Ltd


The ancient woodland of Burnham Beeches in Surrey is the neighbourhood for Block Management UK’s latest new instruction. 

Christopher House is an apartment block that is just a short walk from the picturesque 370-hectare site that is a national nature reserve, often used as locations for movies. The property has been self-managed by a Director and successfully too it seems as it comes to us with no significant issues. 

The Director has built up working relationships with local contractors over the years that he was keen to see continue. But the Director wanted to retire and residents wanted to take advantage of our full management offering including responsibility for organizing cleaning and grounds maintenance. 
Although the property has a non-contractual, seasonal arrangement with a local gardener, we are always keen to continue successful contractor relationships and work hard to do so once we have t..
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(16 August 2021 )

This self-managed property needed an agent to budget and plan for longer term maintenance


Block Management UK Ltd is delighted to announce our latest instruction in Croydon. The residents at this Canning Road property had done an excellent job of self-managing for quite a while and had recently installed a fire alarm system as recommended by a fire risk assessment they had commissioned. However, their reserve fund was running on the low side and they needed advice and help on budgeting for longer term maintenance projects. 
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(29 July 2021 )

Self-management: here’s the biggest contributing factors to RMCs turning to a managing agent


Recently, here at Block Management UK Ltd we’ve seen a flurry of self-managing properties enquiring about our services.  I’ve signed up four self-managing properties myself over the last couple of months and there are similarities in terms of the issues that lead each site to hire us to take on the management.  

Below I detail some of the common factors that drive self-managers to seek our help, plus the number one factor that contributes to Directors finally making the decision to switch.  

Reasons to try self-management


Many RMC Directors have excellent reasons for trying their hand at self-management. Often, it’s because they have had a less than optimal experience (or several) with the previous managing agent. The Directors may feel that they could have sourced better contractors or speeded up the paperwork. And a Google search shows that there is plenty of leasehold advice available.  Leasehold management software is also available and can help with ..
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(19 July 2021 )

Block Management UK Ltd strengthens property management team with two new remote property managers


Block Management UK Ltd is pleased to announce that we have engaged two new property managers to help manage our growing portfolio of properties.


The two managers are based in central England and have managed property portfolios across the region. Both have been trained in property management in ARMA-regulated managing agents.

Kubra Shah is based in Bedfordshire and is an Associate member of the Institute of Residential Property Management AIRPM). She began her property management career at FirstPort. She went on to work at managing agents Chamonix Estates and then Gem Estates, focusing on the Bedford and Northampton region.

Our second new PM, who starts with us in September, is Stacey Slattery. Stacey is an experienced property manager and has worked for two London-based managing agents; Gordon and Co in Tower Bridge and HML Group in Richmond. She is skilled in communi..
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(14 July 2021 )

Handover news: Commercial access to be monitored at new Watford instruction



A modern block of 18 flats in Watford have engaged Block Management UK as their new managing agents. The residents share the building with a large commercial unit currently occupied by one of the major supermarket chains.

Blocks that contain larger commercial units may have issues that must be monitored before they become problems for the residents. With a large amount of commercial waste and frequent large deliveries of new stock, it can be prudent to have a bin collection and delivery strategy. And often delivery vehicles can damage verges or walls.  

We expect to develop a good relationship and open communication with the owners of the business as one of our priorities in managing this property.
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(08 July 2021 )
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