Bristol Association of Letting and Managing Agents: BALMA
- To encourage professionalism within the lettings profession.
- To share best practice with professional colleagues and clients.
- To aim to protect the general public against bad business practice.
- To endeavour to raise standards within the lettings profession.
- To promote the lettings profession in both the industry sector and outside of it.
- To use BALMA as a discussion forum and to receive feedback from various Landlord Panels and Council contacts.
Membership shall be drawn from companies, groups, or individuals engaged in management and letting of residential properties. Only one representative person per company will be entitled to vote at meetings.
Any company, group or individual seeking membership must make an application on an association form signed by the applicant.
All Members are required to comply with the Constitution and the rules of the “Code of Practice”. Failure to do so shall entitle BALMA, after following the appropriate procedure, to withdraw membership, without refund of subscription. Withdrawal of membership will require a resolution passed by a majority of members present at a meeting.
The Committee also reserve the right to suspend a member’s membership pending investigation of a complaint should it prove necessary to do so.
Before BALMA membership is granted, all current members will be contacted by the Chairperson/Vice Chairperson/Committee Member to ask if anyone knows of any reason why the applicant should not be admitted to membership.
Before membership is granted the applicant must produce details of Professional Indemnity Insurance and registration with an authorised deposit protection scheme.
On election Members shall pay an entrance fee and an annual subscription as agreed by BALMA at its AGM.
Payment will become due each year on a date determined by the BALMA Committee.
Membership renewal fees are currently payable by the 31 January each year. Should a member not renew their membership within a month of that time, whether demanded by the Treasurer or not, their membership shall cease immediately.
Members must produce their Professional Indemnity insurance details upon renewal.
A Member may resign Membership by giving one month’s written notice to the secretary of BALMA. This will be recorded at the next committee meeting. No refund of membership fees will be given.
Membership will cease automatically if a winding-up order or receiving order is made against a Member or if the Member makes an arrangement with creditors. No fee or subscription will be refunded.
Members agree to attend a minimum of one meeting per year, in addition to the Christmas meeting.
An Annual General Meeting (AGM) will be held once a year on a date and place fixed by the Committee. One calendar month’s notice will be given to the Members.
The AGM shall consider and approve the report and accounts, elect members of the Committee and conduct all other business as may properly be conducted at an AGM.
No business shall be transacted at any general meeting unless a quorum is present when the meeting is formed. Seven members present in person shall be a quorum.
Extraordinary General Meetings (EGM) may be held at such times, as the Committee think necessary. An EGM may also be called at the request of 25% of the Members provided that the object of the meeting is stated. The Committee shall give notice of such a meeting within seven days of receiving notice of the request.
Notwithstanding the notice referred to above, the Chairperson, or in their absence the Vice Chairperson, shall have the power to summon an EGM at shorter notice for the purpose of considering and dealing with any matter of urgency provided that such shorter notice is not less than two days.
The accidental omission to give notice to any Member shall not invalidate the proceeding at a general meeting.
OFFICERS OF THE ASSOCIATION
The Chairperson and Vice Chairperson shall be elected at the AGM. All Officers of the Association hold their position for 3 years from election, but may seek re-election at the end of their term. The Chairperson will be entitled to a casting vote.
The Chairperson, or in their absence the Vice Chairperson, shall take the chair at all general meetings. If neither are present, then fifteen minutes after the time appointed for holding the meeting, the Members present shall elect one of their number to the chair. That Chairperson will be entitled to a casting vote in an addition to their own vote.
Each Member shall be entitled to one vote at a general meeting, AGM and EGM. Voting will be by simple majority.
Votes may be given either personally or by proxy. A proxy vote shall be confirmed in writing by or on behalf of the appointed Member.
For the purpose of conducting the business and carrying out the objectives BALMA, a Committee shall be elected comprising of the following officers:
- Vice Chairperson
Candidates for the election must be proposed and seconded by a Member. A candidate must indicate their willingness to accept such a position before being proposed. They must also be willing to accept proposal for election fourteen working days before the AGM. The list of candidates for election to the Committee should be circulated to the Members as early as possible before the AGM.
Election to Membership of the Committee shall be determined by a majority vote at each AGM.
The Committee shall have the power, on the majority vote at any meeting duly convened, to relieve a Member of the Committee from any office held by that Member of the Committee.
The Committee can, by resolution, delegate any of its powers to one or more of its Members to carry out a duty assigned to it by the Committee.
BALMA shall have the powers at a meeting to make alterations to the Constitution, provided that the proposed alteration or addition be proposed to the full Membership prior to the meeting. Any resolution must be passed by a simple majority of Members present.
Complaints are directed to Chairman and in their absence Vice Chairman and the member shall have the right to respond to Chairman/Vice Chairman before taking any action.
In the event of a complaint made by a member or, in the event of a complaint made to it by an outside party, the complaint will be passed on to the relevant member. A reply to this complaint would be expected to be given the utmost urgency and a copy of all correspondence being passed to the Committee.
The Complainant must exhaust the individual Company's complaints procedure before referring to BALMA.
Please note that BALMA cannot assist with deposit disputes, which must be referred to the relevant Deposit Scheme's dispute resolution service.
The Committee may also appoint one of its Members, or an impartial outside body, to administer the membership rules for disciplinary reasons. The appointee(s) shall be empowered to:
- Make investigations into alleged breaches of membership rules and serious breaches of the Code of Practice. These may require the Member to be questioned by the Committee.
- Make recommendations to any such Member with regard to the Committee failure to take action in connection with the Membership rules and Code of Practice.
- Make recommendations to the Committee on appropriate action to be taken on matters arising from proven breaches.
The Committee reserves the right suspend a Member’s membership while a complaint is being investigated until it is resolved.
The Committee reserves the right to terminate membership should a serious complaint be made against a Member, if no satisfactory explanation is forthcoming from the member.
The Committee reserves the right to contact the local press with outline details of any member whose membership has been terminated.
A Notice served on a Member by sending it by Letter, Fax or Email will be deemed as served.