Welcome to the December 2018 edition of the APM Client E-Newsletter.
Here’s to 2019
At Auckland Property Management we are about to close off on a busy 2018, pay all our residential and commercial landlords, and all of the tradespeople who have helped us throughout the year before we then head off to the beach, the hills, and beyond.
To say the year has been a turning point for our 71 strong team would be an understatement. With a new government; new legislation; new offices; many new clients; new records; industry recognition and awards, plus the huge support of our very loyal and much appreciated clients, our team at Auckland Property Management have been through many changes this year with many more to come.
To be truthful, some of it has not been easy, but a successful company is one that adapts, plans, and looks ahead to the changing real estate landscape and asks itself ‘what can we do better?’
I intend to make 2019 another memorable year for our clients and our team. We will be introducing new technology and systems to minimise our costs, and provide additional staff training to keep our service levels at the leading edge of our industry.
More of that in 2019…
For now I would like to take this opportunity to thank our clients for your continued support. We look forward to working with you and continuing to provide reduced risk management in 2019. We want to wish you all a safe and happy holiday season.
Enjoy spending time with your family and friends.
Auckland Property Management
APM office holiday hours
Monday 24 Dec – 8.30am – 3.00pm
Tuesday 25 Dec – CLOSED
Wednesday 26 Dec – CLOSED
Thursday 27 Dec – 8.30am – 5.00pm
Friday 28 Dec – 8.30am – 5.00pm
Monday 31 Dec – 8.30am – 3.00pm
Tuesday 1 Jan – CLOSED
Wednesday 2 Jan – CLOSED
Thursday 3 Jan onwards – 8.30am – 5.00pm
Legislation Update – Letting Fee Prohibition
APM thought carefully about how we as a property management company will manage the removal of letting fees due to the announcement that the Residential Tenancies (Prohibiting Letting Fees) Amendment Bill was passed in Government and came into effect from 12 December 2018.
So what has APM done to manage this legislative change?
Property Investment Seminars
We had great attendance to our Property Investment Seminars we held recently that covered topics of Residential, Body Corporate Property Management, Property/Trust Law, and Financial aspects of property investment. If you couldn’t attend the seminar on 15 November, have a read of the key points from each speaker.
We plan to hold more events like this in the New Year. If you have a particular interest on a topic then we would love to hear from you. Email Lana on [email protected] with your suggestions.
APM Rental Property Statistics
Our rental property managers are always busy bees. Take a look at some APM residential property statistics from 2018.
Swimming Pool & Outdoor Fire Regulations Reminder
Summer is here and that means more people will take advantage of outdoor activities at their home. We will be sending our tenants a timely reminder about the swimming pool regulations, the use of brazier/outdoor pizza ovens, and to conserve their water if on a water tank next week.
If you own or live in a property with a swimming pool, please note that any pool deeper than 40cm (fixed or portable) is now subject to safety provisions under the Building Act which could issue a $5000 fine.
Ensure you are compliant with the regulations and read more about them here.
Insulation – what scenario do you fit into?
As a property management company it is our job to look out for our clients properties and make sure they adhere to current and incoming legislations. The minimum insulation requirement of ceiling and underfloor insulation has the looming deadline of 1 July 2019. Below are a few scenarios we have come across in the insulation journey which may help clarify your situation.
My rental property does not have insulation so is not yet compliant.
My rental property has insulation but I am unsure if it is compliant.
My rental property has insulation and is compliant.
My rental property is exempt from installing insulation.
Looking ahead to 2019 – 7 things to consider
As 2018 draws to a close, let’s dust off the crystal ball and take a look at what may be in store for Body Corporate, Cross Lease, and Residents’ Society owners in 2019.
- Owners with mortgages will continue to see historic low interest rates during 2019. We may know that this will be the case, but the question is, will owners make the most of it?
- Annual levies should remain relatively flat next year aside from buildings which are experiencing distress (such as those facing remediation which come with nasty special levies). So if in 2019 you are not facing building issues it could present you with an ideal opportunity to either pay down some debt or alternatively build up your property rainy day fund.
- The insurance market will continue to come under stress which may see an increase in premiums, or for repetitive events specific to any one complex – like burst water pipes or flooding – an increase in excess.
- Don’t expect to see any changes to the Unit Titles legislation any time soon. The current Government is not convinced that the recent proposed changes go far enough so will hold off for now. KiwiBuild will retain their property focus as well as the proposed tax working group recommendations. Out of that will also come a focus from the Government on social housing issues and ensuring a second term in office.
Thanks for taking our Survey
Throughout the year we surveyed our client database up until clients starting after August 2018. We thank all those who took the time to answer our survey and we appreciated all the comments we received. The feedback we gathered allows us to reflect on what we do well, and also on areas we can improve. We received some lovely testimonials, read just some of the ones we received below:
“A trusted pair of hands for your property. Everything is done properly and thoroughly, my property is in safe hands. Needs of both owner and tenant are well looked after. As I live abroad I am glad I chose APM to take care of my investment. They’ve not put a foot wrong. APM I can only highly recommend. Keep up the good work.” – D. Strack
“APM has provided a knowledgeable and efficient service to our Body Corporate over a long period. They have a depth of expertise that has assisted our Body Corporate to operate as efficiently as possible and with maximum compliance. I would be happy to explain why to anyone considering using their services.” T. Bradley
“Dealing with Auckland Property Management has made the process of renting out our family home a stress free process. They have provided us with good tenants and do regular inspections. Any maintenance gets done quickly and professionally. I would happily recommend your services and have done so already to anyone I know with a property to manage.” L. Kingston
“As a Body Corporate Committee member I have to work closely with APM and at all times found their approach to be of a high standard and very professional…Their knowledge of BC regulations has also been invaluable as we work through the process of remediation and litigation. I would not hesitate to use APM again or recommend them to others in the future.” T & F. Turrall
Welcome to the new faces who have joined our growing team here at APM. Meet Estela Guidote, Commercial Business Development Manager/ Commercial Property Manager; Tess Maree, Reception Administrator; and Sophia Lin, Property Management Administrator.
Making holiday accommodation easier
Waiheke Escapes is a division of APM that offers holiday accommodation management. As Waiheke Escapes grows, ensuring that we have the best systems in place to deliver results for our owners with the support that is required, has always been the focus of APM and its team. Several months ago, the decision was made to change the Waiheke Escapes reservation system from the American designed and supported Escapia, to the locally designed and supported ResBook.
Escapia was a great option when we started Waiheke Escapes but the more we used it, the more we realised that it also had several system limitations that affected outputs for both owners and the reservation team. These limitations together with poor response times to support queries, and the lack of flexibility with the system design, led us to make the change.
We are pleased to advise that the Resbook changeover has now been completed and we are already seeing the many benefits including:
- Faster booking calendar response times for our guests.
- Allowable add-ons for services i.e. portacots and tourism options i.e. Seg Wai tours
- Faster support response times due to ResBook being based in Auckland.
- Customised options in the reservation system design that help our processes more efficiently.
- A feature request area that allows us to suggest features for the bookings system that will benefit all users.
- An upcoming app that will be available to use on phones and tablets to support reservation staff and guests.
As we continue to use ResBook, we are sure that we will discover many other attributes that will enhance the experience for our owners, guests and reservation team.
7 Questions With…Jessie Wu
Jessie Wu, Business Development Manager
Q. How long have you been in property management?
Nearly 10 years.
Q. What do you think landlords need to consider when putting their property up for rent?
Get the property ready to be tenanted e.g does it need re-painting, does it need refurbishment, does any maintenance need attending to? The other important thing is to make sure the property is compliant with legislations.
Q. What has been a favourite memory during your time as a Property Manager/BDM?
I organised a makeover for a property and rented it within one week to great tenants. The Owner was very grateful for the fast turnaround.
Q. What do you plan on doing over the holiday season?
Family time, I feel bad as I have not spent enough time with my daughter due to being very busy at work this year.
Q. If you could play one instrument you aren’t able to now, what would it be and why?
Piano, it sounds beautiful! Need a lot of practice though that I unfortunately don’t have time for.
Q. What is your favourite thing to cook/bake, and why?
I have a great husband that likes cooking, and with in-laws living next door, I have been very lucky that I haven’t done any cooking for quite a while.
Q. What do you wish you knew more about, and why?
I wish I had more accounting knowledge so I could help my clients with their investment planning.