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Helping to help

account.”However,aswellaskeeping your block looking clean and wellmaintained, an efficientcleaningand/ormaintenance companycan add valuefor residentsby spotting health&safetyissues andidentifying building faults and the need for repairs.RMCs/ RTMCos canthendealwithany problems quickly before they become amajor issue Any cleaning andmaintenance firm


thatRMC/RTMCo directors and company shareholders appointshouldnot only want to work foryou butwithyou (andwhere applicable yourmanaging agent)toensure that your block ismaintained to the highest possible standard. At ACS, ouroperativesare trained notonly

to clean communal areas but to ‘inspect’ themwhileonsite, reportingbackany areas of concern that theymay have. In our experience themost common problemsare damagedcommunalentrancesecuritydoors, faulty entrysystems,dumped waste, defective lighting in communal corridors andvermin such as rats andmice. Once spotted, such issues canquickly be reported to theclient. Anycompany worthemploying will be on hand to help resolvethe problem-withthe aim ofmaking thewhole processthatlittlebit easier forresidents. Of course the cleaning teams you appoint

do -from timeto time-need alittleassistance fromresidents to help them do their job efficiently andmaintain a strong, mutually beneficial relationship. At ACSour tips forRMCs/RTMCos are that youtry anddothe

following: nMake readilyavailable copies of ALL communal entrance keys andgatefobs when you appoint a new cleaning contractor.Doing this will ensure that your cleaning company is able to attend site as perthe termsofthe contract and accesstothe development is guaranteed.There should

Flat Living Spring2012

Communal Cleaning in leasehold developments is sometimes referred to as “anunnecessary expense on the service charge

US cleancredentials

Craig Covell looksatwaysinwhich cleaning companies canadd value–and howRMCshavea part to play in keeping their block wellmaintained

YOU then be no compromiseonthe standard of

work youreceive. nBe specificwithcleaningcompanies when youare asking themto quote. No twodevelopments arethe same.Cleaning dutiesvaryfrom blocktoblock andclient requirements varytoo.Ifyou explain exactly what you want, the price you are quoted will reflect this. You can then decidewhether the feeisacceptable orwhetheryou need to shop

around. nStress theimportancetoyourfellow residentsofNOT storingpersonalorbulky itemsincommunalareas.Thisisnot only to abidebyhealthand safety,fire risk and insuranceregulations butifitemssuch as bikesand buggies arestoredinthese areas

requirements vary too

cleaningduties vary fromblock to blockandclient

If youwanttoappointacleaningcompany you should look out for the following:

nSaFeContractor accreditations niSoaccreditations

nWillingness – tomeet on site to reviewthe works required before submitting a quote

nreferences–ask to go to andlookatother sitestheymaintain andservice in your local area so youcan seethe actual standardsof service they are providing

nCostsandfrequencyof visits – be sure that the contractor is pricing per visit, not on an annual basis. This will then give you the ability towork out the frequency of visits and your overall annual expense on your service charge account.

nadditionalandotherservices – check whether there are anymethods in place to ensure services are checked and operativesmanaged on a regular basis, so that if thereisacomplaintitcan be easily resolved.Alsomostcleaningcompanies nowoffer other services such as carpet cleaning, gutter cleaning, windowcleaning, waste clearance and repairs. If youwant one ormore of thesemake sure they are included in the quote.

nPublic liabilityandindemnityinsurance – ask to see these certificates and for copies so you can checkwhen they expire.

it is very difficultfor operatives to carryout theirdutieseffectivelywhileonsite. Cleaners are reluctant tomove such items for fear of breakagesand damage andcan only remove themif authorised to do so.Someexamples that we have comeacross at ACSinclude:bikes chained to staircaserailings; fishtanks (with fishinthem) in thecommunalhallways; a computer on aPCtable plugged in andrunning off thelandlord’selectricsupply; andinone block, morethan100 plantpotsonasingle staircase. Above all, keep talking to your cleaning contractor.Ifyou do this, you can discuss any concerns on a regular basis andmake sure that the service you want is the one you get. ●

CraigCovellOperationsManager Advanced Cleaning Solutions Ltd

CemeInnovationCentre,MarshWay, Rainham, Essex,RM13 8EU

Tel 0208 5965386 mob07720447780 Fax0208 596 5471


teams youappoint do – fromtimeto

time– need a little assistance from residentstohelp

themdo their job efficiently

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