Rawson Properties Somerset West in the Western Cape is the only residential franchise in the Rawson Group that has a property management division.
The Rawson Properties Somerset West franchise is the only one that has a property management division and they intend to use it to double their current portfolio.
This makes the property management service unique within the group. The new division was initiated by Johann van der Merwe, franchisee for Somerset West, Strand and Gordons Bay and it now manages six sectional title schemes with up to 1 000 units.
Van der Merwe says it had always been a goal of his to offer a complete one-stop property service because it would complement his franchise’s sales and renting operations.
The Rawson's Somerset West property management team is headed by Chantelle Landers and Lilian Waldeck.
“Unlike most managing agents, we are in the strong position of being able to offer a two pronged model," he says. They divide the duties between the maintenance and the management of the scheme and finance and levy collection when taking on a property account.
Van der Merwe says many sectional title schemes and homeowner associations have trustees who are inexperienced in property matters although often very competent in other fields. Therefore, over a quarter of South Africa’s sectional title schemes are allowing their members’ levy payments to lag behind, resulting in consequences for the upkeep, the provision of services and the value of the units in the scheme.
When a scheme does run into financial difficulties, it takes real effort and a great deal of skill to put it right, he says. The rectification process can involve the raising of a special levy, but once a scheme has been pulled up, it shouldn't need special levies unless an unforeseen disaster occurs or a further upgrade is thought to be essential.
Rawson Properties expect to take on two more managing agents in the coming months and to double the number of units they are handling by the end of the year, says van der Merwe.
As part of their plan to offer a one-stop service, they plan to establish a commercial property management, selling and renting service.