Magazine article Journal of Property Management

Condo Management, Italian-Style: Absence of Both Regulations and Association Involvement Mean Scarce Direction for Condo Managers

Magazine article Journal of Property Management

Condo Management, Italian-Style: Absence of Both Regulations and Association Involvement Mean Scarce Direction for Condo Managers

Article excerpt

Italy leads the world in the number of condominiums in private buildings yet, incredible as it may seem in a country full of rules and bureaucracy, there exists not a single regulation governing the people who manage housing for 80 percent of Italy's population. For years the Italian Parliament has debated instituting a register of condo managers, but it seems unlikely to ever happen. In court judgments/sentences, the formal description of property manager varies from "professional" to "simple" building representative/agent.

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Under current Italian regulations, the building representative/agent has no obligation other than to act with good sense and "the care and diligence of a good father toward his family." With respect to liabilities caused by ignorance or incompetence, the responsibility falls back on those whom residents imprudently entrusted with the original mandate. Often residents don't even know who their property manager is or what he or she does. Yet when there's a facility problem, they expect and demand of the property manager the same presence, availability and attention of a hotel concierge. In the end, not even property managers know exactly what their roles are, and so they operate as best they can--within their own means and technical capabilities which certainly does nothing to redeem their image.

The first bill (introduced into Parliament) that suggested the institution of a professional register dates back to 1974, but it still awaits passage. It's incredible that for a profession such as that of property manager--one that literally manages the actual monies of its customers and clients--there are no professional standards, regulations, codes or governing body in Italy.

The only form of indirect regulation appeared in 1998 with the introduction of obligatory and extremely articulate and complex fiscal declarations. …

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