New National Standard for Property Managing Agents Launched

Residents of some 2,300 private condominium estates can now be assured of better service from their managing agents.

There is now a new national standard that aims to raise the level of professionalism of these agents.

While only 15% of the population live in private housing estates, the number of condominiums and private apartments has been on the rise.

And so there is a growing need for managing agents to manage these private estates.

Teo Nam Kuan, Group Director, Quality and Standards Group, SPRING Singapore, said, “We were first approached by the Association of Property and Facility managers, APFM, to develop the standards. And this arose because the association actually had to handle many disputes regarding the performance of managing agents.”

Developed by SPRING Singapore, the new standard will act as a benchmark for the management corporations and residents.

Professor Lim Lan Yuan, President, Singapore Institute of Surveyors and Valuers, said, “Therefore with this standard agreement, the duties of the managing agent are all spelt out, rights and responsibilities are all spelt out. Therefore it makes it clearer. Therefore when they engage a managing agent, they know exactly what a managing agent would be doing.”

Managing agents welcome this new standard as it would boost their professional image.

Teo Poh Siang, Managing Director, Wisely Property Consultants, said, “If managing agents could fulfil the requirements of the code of conduct, the profession would be improved and would be taken to a higher milestone. And if managing agents through this Singapore Standard 519 could improve themselves through competency, through sharing of knowledge, the whole profession would be improved further.”

And management corporations (MCs) see this as a win-win solution.

Lim Tat, Secretary, Yong An Park Management Corp, said, “The MCs are benefiting from (the) industry’s efforts to improve their standards, and as users that can’t be a bad thing.”

This new standard will also help reduce opportunities for contention between the managing agents and management corporations.

Source: Channel NewsAsia, 01 September 2006

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