TEL: 01202 780 780
TRUSTED WITH PROPERTY SINCE 1845

Government to Regulate Managing Agents

April 5th, 2018

Over the weekend the Government published its response to protecting consumers in the letting and managing agent sectors and to mandatory Client Money Protection Schemes and can be found in the following links:

https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/protecting-consumers-in-the-letting-and-managing-agent-market-call-for-evidence

https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/mandatory-client-money-protection-schemes-for-property-agents

The bullet points are:

Regulation

  1. A single Code of Practice for lettings and managing agents. There will be distinct sections for different areas of practice e.g. lettings vs. managing agents. Professional bodies with more stringent requirements than the single Code will be allowed.
  2. The establishment of an Independent Regulator that owns the Code of Practice
  3. Lettings and Managing Agent individuals, including sole traders, will personally need a nationally recognised qualification to practice. It will be the firms responsibility to evidence this to the Regulator
  4. Agents will be required to undertake Continuing Professional Development
  5. A Working Group will be set up, reporting early next year, on how to implement the proposals
  6. The requirement for all agents to be members of an approved professional body will be examined by the Working Group
  7. Criminal sanctions if required for agents who practice despite being banned
  8. Empowering leaseholders to switch Managing Agents
  9. Simplification of the Right To Manage application process

CMP

  1. Client Money Protection (CMP) schemes will need to be approved in order to operate and will be mandatory in the Private Rental Sector.
  2. CMP will be enforced at County Council level (e.g. Trading Standards) and failure to comply will be a civil offence

ARMA expects to be invited to take part in the proposed Working Group to ensure that the proposals are implemented in a reasonable and proportionate way.

 

 

 

Qube – New Management Software

March 27th, 2018

We are delighted to announce that Rebbeck Brothers have chosen to implement Qube to support our block and commercial management business. We are implementing the award-winning property management solution Qube PM, to improve on existing accounting procedures and implement robust processes to scale for future growth.
Matthew Strong, Managing Director at Rebbeck Brothers said: “We selected Qube following a beauty parade of software providers – their program stood out as the market leader and offered a comprehensive solution to help us streamline our business procedures and concentrate on customer service and adding value”.

Daniel Foryszewski, Business Development Manager at Qube Global Software added: “It is fantastic that Matthew and the management team at Rebbeck Brothers are going ahead and implementing Qube. I am looking forward to starting work with them to achieve operational efficiencies and improve communications with their established client base”

Christmas Opening Hours and Emergency Contact Information

December 8th, 2017

We would like to wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from all the Team at Rebbeck Brothers!

 Please note our office hours for the Festive Season:

Mon 25th Dec – Closed

Tue 26th Dec – Closed

Wed 27th Dec – 9am – 5pm

Thu 28th Dec – 9am – 5pm

Fri 29th Dec – 9am – 5pm

Mon 1st Jan – Closed

Tue 2nd Jan – 9am – 5pm

 

In the event of an emergency over the holiday period please call one of the following numbers:

Ian Finch Plumbing & Heating (Plumbing & Heating) – 07580760495

Active Drainage (Plumbing and Drainage) – 01202 877318

BECS Electrical (Electrical, Intercom, Fire Alarm and Gates) – 01202 209260

For lifts and other plant and machinery please refer to information that has been posted up on site or previously circulated to directors. Please note that contractors called over the holiday period will invoice a reasonable call out charge.

Thank You To All Our Contractors

December 8th, 2017

As an end of year ‘thank you’ to all of our contractors, Rebbeck Brothers and the other ARMA-Q agents in town (Burns, Hamilton Townsend and Napier) held a drinks reception at the Wessex Hotel on Tuesday 5th December. Our MD Matthew Strong thanked the 150 contractors attending for all their hard work and commitment over the last year. Matthew commented ‘without all your hard work, we could not provide the service we do to our clients’.

Health and Safety and Collaboration With Other Local Agents

June 8th, 2017

As you are aware, over the last year we have been reviewing our health and safety procedures and the way that we check the contractors who we work with. This is to ensure we are complying with current regulations and ensuring the safety of our clients, contractors and other visitors to the blocks we manage.

We have recently met with some of the other ARMA-Q (www.arma.org.uk) managing agents in the Bournemouth and Poole area including Napier, Burns and Hamilton Townsend to discuss how we can work together.  As a group, we have reviewed the way we deal with health and safety and in particular, the way we competency check contractors in accordance with the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015. As agents, we tend to use the same contractors, so it make sense that we join forces in the checks we have to undertake. Working with these other agents, we have jointly instructed local  Health & Safety advisor Malcolm Pitcher of MSP (www.mspbusinessservices.co.uk) to streamline our procedures and ensure a uniform approach to health and safety.  We have invited all the contractors we work with to a meeting next week in order to discuss this approach and to introduce them to MSP.

We trust that this keeps you informed but please let us know if you have any queries.

April 28th, 2017

April 26th, 2017

 LEAP – The New Energy and Money Saving Service – FREE For Local Residents

Call now to book your free home visit on 0800 060 7567

Bournemouth Borough Council has recently launched a new, completely free-of-chargeservice called LEAP (Local Energy Advice Programme) for eligible residents. This service aims to help you save money and keep your home warm and cosy.  It is funded by energy companies and approved by energy watchdog Ofgem. You can arrange now to have a free home visit by a LEAP Home Energy Advisor.

 The Home Energy Advisor will:

  • Install free simple energy saving measures in your home – such as low energy LED lightbulbs, reflective radiator panels, shower savers and draught-proofing to wooden windows and doors. These measures save the average household £30 on their energy bills each year (subject to the suitability of your home).
  • Give you energy efficiency hints and tips and, if you have a heating controller, advice on how to set it to keep your energy bills under control.
  • Help you to check if you are on the cheapest energy tariffs. On average, a household can save £287 each year by switching their gas and electricity supply to the cheapest tariff.

After the home visit, the Home Energy Advisor can also arrange for you:

  • Free telephone advice on unclaimed benefits and grants from a money advice specialist – through IncomeMax.
  • Advice on further funding for energy efficiency improvements, such as insulation and heating.
To see if you’re eligible for a LEAP home visit, please look at the checklist overleaf.
If you have any questions or to book a home visit straight away:

Please call on 0800 060 7567 (office hours 8.45am till 5.30pm, Monday to Friday)

 

Eligibility Chart If you pay Council Tax to Bournemouth Borough Council then any of the below qualifies you for LEAP. Your personal information will remain confidentia at all times.

 QUALIFYING CRITERIA – anyone in the following situations:

  • Household with maternity/ child under 5 or particularly large family
  • Carers in receipt of carers allowance
  • Receiving Disability Benefit (e.g. Disability Living Allowance, Personal Independence Payment, Attendance Allowance, Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit)
  • Difficult family situation such as victim of domestic violence or recent bereavement

 INCOME CRITERIA– anyone receiving one or more of the following:

  • Housing Benefit
  • Council Tax Reduction
  • Income Support
  • Income-related Jobseeker’s Allowance
  • Contribution-based ESA or JSA
  • Income-related Employment & Support Allowance
  • Pension Credit
  • Child Tax Credit
  • Working Tax Credit with an income below £16,190
  • Universal Credit with an income below £16,190
  • Income below £16,190

PHYSICAL HEALTH CRITERIA – anyone with one or more of the following:

  • Cardiovascular condition (e.g. coronary heart disease, stroke, hypertension, transient ischemic attack)
  • Respiratory condition (e.g. COPD, childhood asthma)
  • Neurological condition (e.g. dementia, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy)
  • Musculoskeletal conditions (e.g. osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis)
  • Blood conditions (e.g. Sickle cell disease, thalassemia)
  • Cancer
  • Physical or sensory disability
  • Other illness exacerbated by living in a cold home (confirmed by your GP)

MENTAL HEALTH CRITERIA, such as:

  • Schizophrenia
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Serious depression (receiving regular treatment)

New Staff

March 27th, 2017

We are delighted to welcome two new members to our team this week.

Maria Sadowska will be offering additional support to our Accounts department.

Andy Thorn is joining us as a Residential Property Manager, bringing with him a wealth of experience.

 

YMCA Homeless Appeal

January 27th, 2017

For our office Christmas party this year, 16 members of the team spent an exciting evening at Poole Stadium grey hound racing… Our random choice of dogs earned us an £86 win which we have just donated to the YMCA homeless appeal.

Health and Safety Update

November 25th, 2016

How we are trying to protect you and ourselves from fines and prosecution.

Over the last year we have been working hard to comply with the changes in health and safety regulations relating to maintenance and repair works (Construction Design and Management Regulations 2015).  Our commitment to safe working practices is to protect the interest of all parties involved – some clients have asked why not all managing agents are following the same rules, a few continue to instruct contractors themselves without our knowledge and some contractors feel we are being inflexible. With a team of safety inspectors roaming the area, all agents and contractors  should be following the same rules. The following incident report demonstrates what can happen……

This is a case that came to light in the courts just a few days ago. It involves an management company, a self-employed gardener doing roofing work and an elderly gentleman who sadly lost his life as a result of a fall from height through a sky-light. It is a good example of what can go wrong.

Roman Lodge Asset Management Limited in Congleton, failed to have adequate systems in place to ensure a competent roofer was appointed. Both the company and the property manager failed to adequately plan and supervise the work, due to their own lack of understanding of standards and the law relating to maintenance/repair works.

Roman Lodge Asset Management Ltd pleaded guilty to breaching Regulations and were fined £20,000 with £8,010.00 costs. Its director, pleaded guilty to breaching the Health and Safety at Work Act and was sentenced to four months imprisonment on each count (suspended for 12 months) and was ordered to pay £8,010.00 costs. The gardener who was instructed to do the roof repair, pleaded guilty to breaching  the Health and Safety at Work Act and was sentenced to six months imprisonment (suspended for 12 months) and was ordered to pay £8,610.47 costs.

http://press.hse.gov.uk/2016/three-fined-after-man-loses-life-due-to-fall-through-fragile-roof/

The simple and reasonable procedures  that we have put in place are designed to avoid this type of incident. Rebbeck Brothers have also retained the services of a health and safety consultant who is working with us to ensure safe working practices and on larger projects to undertake site inspections.  We are working in your best interest to protect your home and investment.


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