Your next general meeting is in a few months and you are not satisfied with your current trustee? It's time to start selecting candidates. Our Tips for Effective Recruitment
When to Start Prospecting?
The search for a new trustee can not be improvised. Start by drawing up specifications summarizing what you expect from your future property manager: number of visits and meetings with the union council in the year, responsiveness … You must meet the candidates at least twice: in their premises and it's important in your condo. This process takes about two months.
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The law requires the syndic to send the convocation at least 21 days before the date of the general meeting (AG); in practice, professionals leave themselves a margin of safety of two or three additional weeks. You must therefore send the contracts early enough (at least two months before the date of the meeting) so that they can be attached to the agenda. In total, it will take four to five months between the beginning of your survey and the meeting.
How to select the candidates?
Start by learning about the "specialty" of the professional. This may not be known, but trustees often have special skills on one type of property. Some, for example, mainly manage new condominiums (they often require the use of contractual guarantees: annual, biennial and decennial), Haussmann buildings or towers (IGH, high-rise buildings). When you meet these specialists, ask them the percentage of buildings with the same characteristics as yours in their portfolio.
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The problems specific to your co-owners can also refer you to a trustee rather than another. For example, if you are faced with numerous unpaid bills, prefer a firm with a litigation department or a professional "handgrip", which will send a raise without delay. If you have a lot of work ahead, choose firms with a technical department. Finally, if your co-ownership is confronted with irreducible litigants systematically attacking AG decisions, recruit a trustee with legal training or having, there too, a litigation department.
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Also check the professional guarantees of the candidates for the position of syndic. They must have two guarantees: a professional liability insurance (RCP), which covers the damage related to its business, and a financial guarantee, which compensates the co-owners in case of bankruptcy. Get the certificates and the amounts guaranteed. The higher these are, the better.
Finally, find out about the validity of the professional card of your interlocutors. Since the reform that took place on July 1, 2015, the trustee must have a S card "Syndic de copropriété" dating back less than three years.
Can we negotiate a trustee contract?
Before negotiating the contract, start reading it carefully. Indeed, since July 2, 2015, trustees who conclude or renew their mandate must comply with a standard contract, whose content was defined by Decree No. 2015-342 of March 26, 2015. This text requires that almost all benefits are fixed. Only about twenty so-called "special" services, exhaustively listed (among which the establishment of the dated state, the recovery of unpaid or the holding of a general meeting outside these hours or for a duration greater than what is provided in the package) may be billed separately. Check that the law is respected and that the contract does not provide for illegal billing.
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Then, look at the scope of the services included in the package because it varies significantly from one firm to another. The duration of the general meeting and its schedules are among the points of vigilance. For example, if the package provides for a limited general meeting time of one hour you will probably have to pay additional fees every year! Be careful not to let yourself be blinded by a very competitive package: this sometimes masks a mediocre level of benefits or a prohibitive cost of certain particular services …