Changing cleaner

When an existing cleaner is not doing a good job cleaning the estate, perhaps it is time to change the cleaner. Most of the time, before making the change, it may be necessary for the Council to identify where the gaps are before going out to get new quotes. Otherwise, the same mistake and poor cleaning results would recur.

An example would be not specifying the need for monthly water jetting to clean the car park or an annual cleaning of the estate or extra waste disposal work before and during  major holidays like Chinese New year, Hari Raya Puasa and Deepavali etc. Without these requirements written in the scope of work in the agreement, the cleaner would assume these are not required and omit doing these. Mismatch of expectations between the Council and the Cleaner happens. Consequently, the residents/Council may be unhappy with the state of affairs. Changing to a new Cleaner without addressing this would result in the same situation repeated. There have been situations where Councils changed from one Cleaner to another without achieving the results desired.

What to look for in AGM

Normally before the Annual General Meeting (AGM), your Managing Agent would prepare and send out a package of materials called the Notice for AGM. While the list of items could be endless, there are a few main items to look for in this package.

Firstly the package should give 2 weeks notice to owners if no special resolutions are presented. However, if there are special resolutons, 3 weeks notice is required by law. This is to give the owners enough time to read through, digest and prepare for the issues at hand.

Take note of the dates for last payment of Maintenance and Sinking Fund. Those in arrears cannot be nominated to be Council members. Also, note the requirements to be proxy for the actual owner of a unit.

Apart from the above, some of the usual resolutions would include:-

  1. determination of interest payable for late payments;
  2. determination of insurance to purchase for the estate;
  3. powers to Management Corporation to recover legal fees from owners for defaults;
  4. determination of the number of members for Council and nomination of Council members;
  5. appointment of auditor;
  6. appointment of managing agent;
  7. budget for coming year;
  8. special resolutions including by-laws addition, amendment or removal.

The special resolutions would normally cover one-off projects like painting of estate, water-proofing works, resurfacing of tennis courts, replacement of old switchgear / electricals etc. These are normally large outlays of expenditure from the Sinking Fund and need the AGM to approve these expenditures.

Sometimes the special resolutions cover actions to be taken by the MCST eg action against an owner for persistenly flouting the by-laws and the need to park aside funds for the legal action.