New Owners Corporation laws: what will they mean for you?

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Changes to Victoria’s Owners Corporations Regulations will come into effect on 2 December 2018.

It important that both owners and managers are aware of the changes to ensure a smooth transition to the new regulations, and to avoid any unexpected surprises.

A range of reform options were considered, and a Regulatory Impact Statement was examined.

From there, the preferred changes were decided upon.

The RIS was open for public consultation from 1 August to 30 August 2018.

Consumer Affairs Victoria received 12 public submissions, all of which were considered and responded to in making the new regulations.

You can download the Owners Corporation Regulatory Impact Statement and a summary of the issues raised here.

So, what are the key changes, and what will they mean for you and your property?

Key changes to Victoria’s Owners Corporation Regulations

The following are the key changes make to the Owners Corporation Regulations in Victoria that will come into effect on 2 December 2018.

Change: Additional information is required for Owners Corporations’ maintenance plans.

What it means for you: The new regulations require that more capital items must be included in maintenance plans, including common property structures, such as the roof, stairways, balustrades, window frames, shared services, fences, pools, water tanks.

Change: Owners Corporation committees can, by resolution, remove members who are absent from 25 per cent or more meetings within a six-month period without giving prior notice or a reasonable explanation to the committee.

What it means for you: You can remove a committee member from office if they are absent from 25 per cent of committee meetings within any six-month period without reasonable explanation.

Change: The required minimum level of professional indemnity insurance for registered Owners Corporation managers increases to $2 million.

What it means for you: Managers must now hold professional indemnity insurance that is sufficient to meet claims of up to $2 million, up from $1.5 million previously.

Change: Additional model rules have been prescribed about the appointment of sub-committees, making changes to the external appearance of lots, and renovations or other works which may affect common property.

What it means for you: A new model rule 2.1 allows a Committee to appoint members to a sub-committee without referring to the Owners Corporation.

A new Model Rule 5.2 requires that an owner or occupier of a lot must obtain the written approval of the owners corporation before making any changes to the external appearance of their lot.

An owners corporation cannot unreasonably withhold approval, but may give approval subject to reasonable conditions to protect quiet enjoyment of other lot owners, structural integrity or the value of other lots and/or common property.

A new Model Rule 5.3 requires that an owner or occupier of a lot must notify the owners corporation when undertaking any renovations or other works that may affect the common property and/or other lot owners’ or occupiers’ enjoyment of the common property.

Read the new regulations in full on the Victorian Legislation and Parliamentary Documents website.

At Beyond Strata, we strive to keep you up to date with any changes that are made to relevant laws and regulations.

If you would like to know more about the services we offer, please visit Beyond Strata or call us on 03 8595 4364.

Author: Beyond Strata

Beyond Strata is a professional owners corporation management firm that was founded on overarching principles of professionalism, honesty, integrity, openness and transparency. We strive to continually improve our people, culture, technology and processes improving our firm’s ability to provide the highest level of service possible to our clients.

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