Year-end checklist from a Body Corporate perspective

Introduction

It’s beginning to feel a lot like Christmas! As the year draws to an end the trustees may wish to take stock of where the management of the scheme stands. This article will set out a list of things that the trustees may wish to address or conclude going into the festive period.

Checklist

1. Final trustee meeting

Before the holidays commence we recommend that the trustees hold their last trustee meeting to go through this checklist and finalise all matters that can be brought to completion.

2. Meet with managing agent

The trustees should meet with the managing agent to ensure that the management functions will be handled by the portfolio managing agent over the festive period despite any possible leave.

3. Available trustee over holiday

The trustees should ensure that there is at least one trustee available to the members of the body corporate during the festive period.

4. Trustees’ report

Regardless of the scheme’s financial year end or when the scheme has held their annual general meeting we recommend that the trustees deliver the members a year-end report that sums up pertinent management and financial matters as well as projects undertaken and completed. Good communication fosters a heathy community.

5. Minutes

All minutes of all meetings held should be completed and sent out before the ends of the year.

6. Check budget

The trustees and managing agent should check thecurrent status of the financial position of the body corporate to ensure that spending is still in line with the approved budget.

7. Finalise projects

The trustee in charge of physical management should push for any projects that can be completed before the builder’s holidays commence.

8. Pay invoices

The trustee in charge of financial management should ensure that all invoices are paid before the end of the year.

9. Payment of bonuses

The trustees are responsible for supervising all employees of the body corporate. It is standard practice to pay staff bonuses at this time of year. The trustees should have budgeted for this additional expense, and should therefore ensure that body corporate employees be paid their bonus.

10. Co-ordinate employees

The trustees should ensure that all body corporate employee’s responsibilities, leave, salaries and bonuses are dealt with during the festive period.

11. Deliveries

This time of year brings with it increased online Black Friday and Christmas shopping. There is, as a result, increased amounts of deliveries. I suggest that the trustees ensure that the delivery policies are known and adhered to.

12. Access control and security

Many members travel more at this time of year. There is also increased numbers of short-term tenants and/or visitors. The trustees should ensure that access control and security measures are operating efficiently.

13. Alarm, electric fence and security cameras

It is always wise to keep the alarm system, electric fences and security cameras serviced such that all the beams and sensors are in working order. This is a good time to schedule such a service. That way the body corporate can ensure that the alarms, electric fences and security cameras are in optimum working order while you are on vacation.

14. Short-term tenants

The body corporate must deliver a copy of the rules to the short-term tenants. The rules could be left on a public notice board at the scheme, or the rules could be left within the section that is let. The trustees are then tasked with the duty to control, manage, and administer the common property, and do all things reasonably necessary for the enforcement of the rules of the scheme. The trustees must enforce the rules against the owner of the unit on the basis of the owner being a member of the body corporate. The owner of the unit will then need to ensure the tenant’s compliance with the rules on the basis of their rental lease agreement (contractual relationship).

15. Visitors

Festive periods bring increased visitors to sectional title schemes. I recommend reading my article on the enforcement of rules on tenants an visitors to ensure that owners and occupiers are not subjected to undue noise or nuisance.

16. Parking

As I have highlighted – the holidays bring increased visitors to sectional title schemes. The visitor parking bays may be put under pressure.  I recommend reading my article on parking in sectional title schemes to deal with parking problems.

17. Garden

The garden service company or gardener may go on leave. I therefore suggest that the trustees schedule a last mow of the lawn before that time.

18. Irrigation system

It may be that the body corporate have an irrigation system made up of sprinklers that operate on a timer. This is useful to ensure that the garden is regularly watered.

19. Swimming pool

During the festive period the pool will be used more regularly. I recommend that the owners and occupiers be reminded of the pool use rules. The person responsible for maintaining the pool may be on leave. I therefore recommend that it would be wise to give the pool a proper clean. It may be that there will be loads of rain during the period such that it should be backwashed to lower the water level to accommodate the additional rain water. Alternatively, high temperatures may require the pool to be topped up to compensate for the evaporation of the pool water.

20. Festive decorations

For a detailed discussion on festive decorations I suggest you read my article on this topic.

21. Street party

A year-end street party is a lovely way to close off and celebrate the year. This fosters a close community and gives the opportunity to give and receive any information on the holiday checklist.

Conclusion

I hope this checklist helps your body corporate prepare for the festive holiday period. Travel safe wherever you may go. I wish you a lovely holiday and a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

Written by Dr Carryn Melissa Durham

Related Posts

Body corporate
Webinars

Taking the Fees out of Attorneys

Willie Roos (CEO of Stratafin) and Dilen Heerschop (DTB Attorneys) give insight into how Attorneys fees work; how schemes can recover these fees and how to make your collections more

Full story
Body corporate
Webinars

Taking the Fees out of Attorneys

Willie Roos (CEO of Stratafin) and Dilen Heerschop (DTB Attorneys) give insight into how Attorneys fees work; how schemes can recover these fees and how to make your collections more

Full story