PETALING JAYA (Jan 15): The Board of Valuers, Appraisers, Estate Agents and Property Managers (BOVAEP) should work with the Ministry of Urban Wellbeing, Housing and Local Government (KPKT) and commissioner of buildings (COB) to ensure that Joint Management Bodies (JMBs) and Management Committees (MCs) are protected from unscrupulous property managers, said Henry Butcher Malaysia (Mont’Kiara) Sdn Bhd executive director Low Hon Keong.
“Many property managers have their own interpretation of the Strata Management Act 2013 (Act 757) or the previous Acts. Hence, they tend to be selective in the requirements of the Act and use their interpretation to their advantage. As a result, many JMBs and MCs had been misled in delivering their statutory duties,” he told EdgeProp.my.
“As we are all aware, the majority of JMCs (joint management committees) and MCs members are laypeople who are not familiar with the statutory requirements and mostly depend on the property manager’s advice in making decisions.
“This is the reason why there are cases where the accounts of JMBs and MCs have not been audited for three to five years; a group of parcel owners dominating the management since day one due to the limitation of terms of service not being adhered to; and AGMs (annual general meetings) not being conducted annually,” he added.
Hence, he urged BOVAEP to work with KPKT and COB in educating JMCs and MCs on Act 757, which has been implemented since June 1, 2015.
“If BOVAEP, KPKT and COB can work hand-in-hand in providing standard interpretations as well as enforcing the requirements of Act 757, the interest of JMBs and MCs can definitely be protected,” he said.
On top of that, BOVAEP can also focus on educating parcel owners, especially MCs, on the implication of appointing non-registered property managers via awareness campaigns, he added.
BOVAEP falls under the purview of the Minister of Finance, while the COB reports to KPKT; Act 757 is likewise under the jurisdiction of the KPKT, causing some property management bodies and experts to highlight overlaps between these ministries that need to be resolved for better enforcement.
Low said the newly set-up property managers registry by BOVAEP — which follows the amendment of the Valuers, Appraisers, Estate Agents and Property Managers Act 1981 that was passed on Oct 17, 2017 and gazetted on Jan 2, 2018 — will definitely bring a positive impact to all property management stakeholders, in light of the growing number of strata properties in Malaysia.
This is because the new requirement serves as a control mechanism in the property management industry by allowing only qualified parties to deliver comprehensive property management services, he said.
“This is vital since the number of maintenance charges transactions is growing and the party managing these transactions needs to be of integrity and accountability,” Low said.