P1 residents have been served with a notice from GCD of the developer’s intention to stop the provision of security services with effect from January 1, 2014, or earlier. GCD is entitled to serve this notice as the Security Period provided for in the Deed of Mutual Covenants has already expired. P2’s security Period expires on December 31, 2015.
The reason given by GCD is that the continued provision of the service is no longer commercially viable on their part. Let’s be frank and acknowledge the rates for both security and maintenance services are on the low side when compared with other gated and guarded communities. On top of this, GCD has kept the rates unchanged for the last 5 years. Let’s not debate their business strategy, however strange it looks. A problem they will face if they were to make any sharp upward move in the rates is the concern many residents will have whether more money will lead to better things after the experience we’ve had. Life is difficult if you are between a rock and a hard place.
In the letter GCD has asked all P1 property owners to come together to elect a committee to represent the majority. It can be an informal group of ‘like minded citizens’, I suppose. The problem is you may have owners questioning the legitimacy of the group and whether it has majority support. It can be an excuse for not paying the dues. Presently, the percentage of P1 owners who are in default with GCD is quite staggering, despite GCD having some firepower under the DMC and they have been together for a much longer period. Even then, with the muscle, there may be factors that hinder their ability to pull the trigger, like counter claims of non performance, etc. A few have never paid a dime since day 1. So how do you handle these owners?
What firepower will an informal group have to enforce the dues? Goodwill and trust and the desire to live in harmony and that is just about it.
When there are different security service providers on the ground, accountability issues arise. The GCROA has always maintained that with common areas and shared facilities and the freedom to go into the other precinct, the security service must be an integrated one. Mind you, it is possible to have a single security company and P1 owners have just to pay for the guards within the precinct. If it is that simple, why would GCD issue this notice? Shifting the payroll burden for a few guards to P1 property owners is small beer. My guess is debt collection problem is the real headache. It is also an opportunity to drive a wedge into the GCROA. They can hope but this Committee will do what it takes to resist, with members’ support.
Note that P1 owners will also have to pay their fair share for the security services for the common areas and facilities and the maintenance services as well. For instance, guards will still have to patrol the boardwalk, the jetties, the (capsized) boat house needs to be manned, etc. The new clubhouse will not be a free lunch. P2 property owners (who are the better paymasters, I’ve been informed) are no fools and they will want to make sure there is fairness in distributing the cake. Heck, some may just stop payment if they simply do not agree with the maths.
The GCROA will represent P1 property owners who are members of the GCROA and Messrs Jeff Harris and Santok Singh, both of P1, will lead this effort. The GCROA will also be willing to represent owners who are not members of the GCROA. Join up so we can be a stronger group. The application form to join the GCROA can be obtained here.