Owning a shared ownership property can be a rewarding experience. However, managing this relationship without a third party in place can soon have both co-owners at each other's throats.
A property manager does more than just collect the rent and pay bills. We strongly recommend that you appoint one to ensure smooth management of your co-owned property. These are some of the ways they can make your life easier.
Taking Care of Maintenance and Repairs
It's a late Friday night and a water pipe bursts which forces the Owner Occupier to turn off their water main. They have no water to the property and the owner investor is on holiday for the weekend without phone service. This would then become the owner-occupiers problem as they would be required to obtain quotes, arrange for someone to attend the property for any fixes along with taking care of the payment and getting reimbursed from the Owner Investor when they become available.
If a property manager is appointed, they could easily be contacted and have everything arranged in a favourable time, whilst maintaining an open line of communication with the Owner Occupier. The property manager can then invoice the co-owners appropriately.
Keeping the Co-owners at an Arms Length
If you were managing the property yourselves, who would be in charge of arranging maintenance and inspections? This can be very time-consuming and in time you would likely end up in a one on one confrontation with your co-owner if the load wasn't being shared.
With a property manager in place, it's less personal and keeps you at arms-length.
They can navigate the expectations of both co-owners and apply a solution fairly, and if need be they can then become the adjudicator and have those difficult conversations.
Enforcing Rights and Regulations
For an example, the owner-occupier causes damage to the property, a dispute arises as the Owner Investor feels they are not required to provide compensation towards the fixes as it is at the fault of the Owner Occupier. If you don't have the expertise to manage those issues, it can quickly escalate and the co-owners can find themselves at a tribunal.
A co-ownership property manager can save you time and money and enforce both co-owners rights fairly with an unbiased view.
For the small investment of appointing a property manager, the benefits far outweigh the cost, additional time, risk, effort and potential of damaging the relationship with your co-owner.