What does a Property Factor do?

Property Factors in Scotland make a very important contribution to the upkeep, maintenance and long term and condition and value of the building.

Property factors are a Building Management Company who are responsible for looking after the building and the external and internal communal areas.

They are not responsible for anything to do with any individual properties within the building. That is the landlords responsibility and landlords appointed letting agent.

  • organising owners’ meetings so you can make decisions about the running of the building
  • inspecting the building at agreed intervals and arranging to get any necessary maintenance work carried out, including hiring contractors and overseeing their work
  • arranging for repairs to be carried out, including getting quotes, hiring contractors and supervising their work
  • dealing with any complaint’s owners have about the maintenance or repair work
  • taking charge of a joint maintenance bank account, collecting payments and chasing up anyone who doesn’t pay
  • organising the Buildings Insurance.

What responsibilities do Property Factors have?

Under the Code of Conduct property factors must give homeowners a ‘written statement of services’. This must state:

  • authority to act – the basis on which they are acting on behalf of all the homeowners in the building
  • services – the main services that they will provide
  • additional services – any services that may be required in addition to the main services provided
  • cost and billing – how much their services cost (including how they will be split between homeowners), how often homeowners will be billed, how payments will be collected and the process of changing the fee
  • complaints handling – their complaints handling procedure
  • timescales for responses to requests – how soon they will respond to letters, emails and phone calls
  • declaration of interest – any financial or other interest the building being managed, e.g. are they a letting agent or a homeowner themselves?
  • ending the arrangement – how to bring the property factoring agreement to an end.

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How are Property Factors Regulated?

In addition, property factors must not intimidate or be abusive to homeowners. There must also be a clearly written procedure for debt collection and any charges for late payment of factoring fees must not be excessive. The Code of Conduct for Property Factors sets the standards that property factors must stick to.

Property factor registration

Every property factor in Scotland must be registered in the Register of Property Factors. They must also comply with the Code of Conduct for Property Factors. This sets out the minimum standards of practice that property factors must comply with.

It is a criminal offence to not be registered. The factor could be fined up to £5,000 (level 5 on the standard scale) if found guilty.

Summary

Property Factors in Scotland make a very important contribution to the upkeep, maintenance and long term and condition and value of the building.

This is one of many reasons why buildings in Scotland are kept in good condition and help to maintain and enhance the long term value making Scotland the leading investment strategy location in the UK.