What do you think is the biggest challenge in residential property management over the next six months?
That was the question asked by property recruitment specialist PropRec when they recently conducted a survey property and regional managers around the UK
Over half of the respondents said their biggest challenge would be increased legislation/regulation as the biggest challenge.
Since the tragic events of Grenfell, the consensus in the market is that over the coming months adapting to legislative changes will require a different approach to property management. For example, there was the recent decision by HMRC to change the extra statutory concession. From November 1, managing agents will have to charge VAT for the provision of site staff where previously it was exempt. This poses its own issues for budgeting and most property managers believe this is going to be the largest challenge they will face in the next six months.
Affordable living schemes, anti-social behaviour and Airbnb were next, with almost a third of respondents stating this as the biggest challenge.
Almost all of the property managers surveyed had seen an increase in both anti-social behaviour and the use of Airbnb in the blocks and developments they managed. This has led to an increase in complaints from other tenants as well as security issues around developments.
The next major challenge (14% of respondents) was about accreditations. While some responses have been negative, this was seen as a positive by those who took part in the survey. The need to increase standards both across individuals and the organisations which employ them can only be a good thing in the marketplace.
Finally, the most talked about topic in the news of late: Brexit. Only 5% of those surveyed quoted Brexit as a challenge over the next six months, which was a surprise. From a demand viewpoint, a weaker pound means investment in the UK property market from overseas is more attractive. But the fundamental point remains that come highs and lows, the need for structured property management remains the same.
Overall it is no surprise that events and announcements over the last year have shaped people’s perception of what lies ahead. It is not all negative though, there is a feel-good feeling in the industry that regulation, legislation and accreditation can will only raise standards both at individual at corporate level.
Chris Pardoe, Principal Consultant at PropRec