Our MD in the South West has been in the business for quite a while now and knows his subject inside out when it comes to block management. Having met with lots of potential new clients over the years, he comes up against non-ARMA agents all too often. His view is quite clear as to whether or not anyone looking to appoint a managing agent should make ARMA membership one of their criteria when selecting who they are going to work with.
“The important point to remember is that there is currently no legislation to regulate the residential leasehold sector. This means that anyone can set up as a managing agent and start trading. ARMA was set up in 1991 with the core aim of raising standards in the industry and giving clients the confidence that they are working with property management professionals. Membership is voluntary and ARMA is a way for the industry to regulate itself in the absence of a specific legal framework.
“While many non-members do a very good job, ARMA members must abide to a framework that covers experience in the industry, the manner in which clients’ monies are treated and protected, on-going staff development, membership of an ombudsman scheme and professional indemnity insurance. In addition to this, the ARMA-Q code of practice with which all members must comply was introduced in January 2015. ARMA-Q is centred on a Customer Charter and sets out the manner in which members must do business to support this charter. It is independently regulated and controlled. It has since been further developed to become the ARMA Accreditation programme. All this combines to give clients working with members the confidence that they conform to high standards backed up by regulation.
“At Blenheims, we believe that this regulation and the structure provided by our membership allow us to demonstrate to our clients that we mean business and are happy to be checked and audited. That way we can see where anything needs to be changed and where we are doing well – it’s all about learning and improving. If we do things well, we make our clients happy and they stay with us which is simply good business.”
Good advice if you ask us!
If you would like to know more about ARMA and what they strive to achieve, please visit www.arma.org.uk and if you would like to know more about Blenheims and what we do, please get in touch.