New strata laws will start on 30 November 2016. They have been modernised to fit the reality of living in a strata townhouse or apartment today.
The new building defect bond scheme will start on 1 July 2017.
Currently more than a quarter of NSW’s population lives in, owns or manages strata.
Many new requirements will not impact strata communities immediately. This includes allowing time for pre-appointed strata managing agents, building managers and executive committee members to continue in their roles once the law reforms start.
Some key changes include:
- strengthening the accountability of strata managers
- allowing owners to adopt modern technology to conduct meetings, vote, communicate and administer their scheme
- the need for owners to review by-laws (strata community rules) within 12 months, which can be customised to suit their lifestyle – such as whether to allow owners to keep a pet by giving notice to the owners corporation
- a process for the collective sale and renewal of a strata scheme
- a simpler, clearer process for dealing with disputes
- broadening tenant participation in meetings
- a new option to manage unauthorised parking through a commercial arrangement between a local council and a strata scheme
- a clearer and simpler three-tier renovations process, which waives approval for cosmetic renovations within the strata lot (for example, installing handrails for safety).
There are also measures to reduce red tape, such as simplifying financial statements for owners.
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