Model by-laws for new schemes

The following by-laws have been extracted from the NSW Strata Schemes Regulations, gazetted in August 2016 the come into effect on November 30, 2016.

Note. These by-laws do not apply to a strata scheme unless they are adopted by the owners corporation for the strata scheme or lodged with the strata plan.

1. Vehicles

An owner or occupier of a lot must not park or stand any motor or other vehicle on common property, or permit a motor vehicle to be parked or stood on common property, except with the prior written approval of the owners corporation or as permitted by a sign authorised by the owners corporation.

2. Changes to common property

  • An owner or person authorised by an owner may install, without the consent of the owners corporation:
    • any locking or other safety device for protection of the owner’s lot against intruders or to improve safety within the owner’s lot, or
    • any screen or other device to prevent entry of animals or insects on the lot, or
    • any structure or device to prevent harm to children.
  • Any such locking or safety device, screen, other device or structure must be installed in a competent and proper manner and must have an appearance, after it has been installed, in keeping with the appearance of the rest of the building.
  • Clause (1) does not apply to the installation of any thing that is likely to affect the operation of fire safety devices in the lot or to reduce the level of safety in the lots or common property.
  • The owner of a lot must:
    • maintain and keep in a state of good and serviceable repair any installation or structure referred to in clause (1) that forms part of the common property and that services the lot, and
    • repair any damage caused to any part of the common property by the installation or removal of any locking or safety device, screen, other device or structure referred to in clause (1) that forms part of the common property and that services the lot.

3. Damage to lawns and plants on common property

An owner or occupier of a lot must not, except with the prior written approval of the owners corporation:

  • damage any lawn, garden, tree, shrub, plant or flower being part of or situated on common property, or
  • use for his or her own purposes as a garden any portion of the common property.

4. Obstruction of common property

An owner or occupier of a lot must not obstruct lawful use of common property by any person except on a temporary and non-recurring basis.

5. Keeping of animals

Note. Select option A or B. If no option is selected, option A will apply.

Option A

  • An owner or occupier of a lot may keep an animal on the lot, if the owner or occupier gives the owners corporation written notice that it is being kept on the
  • The notice must be given not later than 14 days after the animal commences to be kept on the
  • If an owner or occupier of a lot keeps an animal on the lot, the owner or occupier must:
    • keep the animal within the lot, and
    • supervise the animal when it is on the common property, and
    • take any action that is necessary to clean all areas of the lot or the common property that are soiled by the

Option B

  • An owner or occupier of a lot may keep an animal on the lot or the common property with the written approval of the owners corporation.
  • The owners corporation must not unreasonably withhold its approval of the keeping of an animal on a lot or the common property and must give an owner or occupier written reasons for any refusal to grant approval.
  • If an owner or occupier of a lot keeps an animal on the lot, the owner or occupier must:
    • keep the animal within the lot, and
    • supervise the animal when it is on the common property, and
    • take any action that is necessary to clean all areas of the lot or the common property that are soiled by the animal.
  • An owner or occupier of a lot who keeps an assistance animal on the lot must, if required to do so by the owners corporation, provide evidence to the owners corporation demonstrating that the animal is an assistance animal as referred to in section 9 of the Disability Discrimination Act 1992 of the Commonwealth.

6. Noise

An owner or occupier of a lot, or any invitee of an owner or occupier of a lot, must not create any noise on a lot or the common property likely to interfere with the peaceful enjoyment of the owner or occupier of another lot or of any person lawfully using common property.

7. Behaviour of owners, occupiers and invitees

  • An owner or occupier of a lot, or any invitee of an owner or occupier of a lot, when on common property must be adequately clothed and must not use language or behave in a manner likely to cause offence or embarrassment to the owner or occupier of another lot or to any person lawfully using common property.
  • An owner or occupier of a lot must take all reasonable steps to ensure that invitees of the owner or occupier:
    • do not behave in a manner likely to interfere with the peaceful enjoyment of the owner or occupier of another lot or any person lawfully using common property, and
    • without limiting paragraph (a), that invitees comply with clause (1).

8. Children playing on common property

  • Any child for whom an owner or occupier of a lot is responsible may play on any area of the common property that is designated by the owners corporation for that purpose but may only use an area designated for swimming while under adult supervision.
  • An owner or occupier of a lot must not permit any child for whom the owner or occupier is responsible, unless accompanied by an adult exercising effective control, to be or remain on common property that is a laundry, car parking area or other area of possible danger or hazard to children.

9. Smoke penetration

Note. Select option A or B. If no option is selected, option A will apply.

Option A

  • An owner or occupier, and any invitee of the owner or occupier, must not smoke tobacco or any other substance on the common property.
  • An owner or occupier of a lot must ensure that smoke caused by the smoking of tobacco or any other substance by the owner or occupier, or any invitee of the owner or occupier, on the lot does not penetrate to the common property or any other lot.

Option B

  • An owner or occupier of a lot, and any invitee of the owner or occupier, must not smoke tobacco or any other substance on the common property, except:
    • in an area designated as a smoking area by the owners corporation, or
    • with the written approval of the owners
  • A person who is permitted under this by-law to smoke tobacco or any other substance on common property must ensure that the smoke does not penetrate to any other lot.
  • An owner or occupier of a lot must ensure that smoke caused by the smoking of tobacco or any other substance by the owner or occupier, or any invitee of the owner or occupier, on the lot does not penetrate to the common property or any other lot.

10. Preservation of fire safety

The owner or occupier of a lot must not do any thing or permit any invitees of the owner or occupier to do any thing on the lot or common property that is likely to affect the operation of fire safety devices in the parcel or to reduce the level of fire safety in the lots or common property.

11. Storage of inflammable liquids and other substances and materials

  • An owner or occupier of a lot must not, except with the prior written approval of the owners corporation, use or store on the lot or on the common property any inflammable chemical, liquid or gas or other inflammable material.
  • This by-law does not apply to chemicals, liquids, gases or other material used or intended to be used for domestic purposes, or any chemical, liquid, gas or other material in a fuel tank of a motor vehicle or internal combustion engine.

12. Appearance of lot

  • The owner or occupier of a lot must not, without the prior written approval of the owners corporation, maintain within the lot anything visible from outside the lot that, viewed from outside the lot, is not in keeping with the rest of the building.
  • This by-law does not apply to the hanging of any clothing, towel, bedding or other article of a similar type in accordance with by-law 14.

13. Cleaning windows and doors

  • Except in the circumstances referred to in clause (2), an owner or occupier of a lot is responsible for cleaning all interior and exterior surfaces of glass in windows and doors on the boundary of the lot, including so much as is common property.
  • The owners corporation is responsible for cleaning regularly all exterior surfaces of glass in windows and doors that cannot be accessed by the owner or occupier of the lot safely or at all.

14. Hanging out of washing

  • An owner or occupier of a lot may hang any washing on any lines provided by the owners corporation for that The washing may only be hung for a reasonable period.
  • An owner or occupier of a lot may hang washing on any part of the lot other than over the balcony railings. The washing may only be hung for a reasonable period.
  • In this by-law:

washing includes any clothing, towel, bedding or other article of a similar type.

15. Disposal of waste—bins for individual lots [applicable where individual lots have bins]

  • An owner or occupier of a lot must not deposit or throw on the common property any rubbish, dirt, dust or other material or discarded item except with the prior written approval of the owners
  • An owner or occupier of a lot must not deposit in a toilet, or otherwise introduce or attempt to introduce into the plumbing system, any item that is not appropriate for any such disposal (for example, a disposable nappy).
  • An owner or occupier must:
    • comply with all reasonable directions given by the owners corporation as to the disposal and storage of waste (including the cleaning up of spilled waste) on common property, and
    • comply with the local council’s guidelines for the storage, handling, collection and disposal of waste.
  • An owner or occupier of a lot must maintain bins for waste within the lot, or on any part of the common property that is authorised by the owners corporation, in clean and dry condition and appropriately covered.
  • An owner or occupier of a lot must not place any thing in the bins of the owner or occupier of any other lot except with the permission of that owner or occupier.
  • An owner or occupier of a lot must place the bins within an area designated for collection by the owners corporation not more than 12 hours before the time at which waste is normally collected and, when the waste has been collected, must promptly return the bins to the lot or other area authorised for the bins.
  • An owner or occupier of a lot must notify the local council of any loss of, or damage to, bins provided by the local council for waste.
  • The owners corporation may give directions for the purposes of this by-law by posting signs on the common property with instructions on the handling of waste that are consistent with the local council’s requirements or giving notices in writing to owners or occupiers of lots.
  • In this by-law:

bin includes any receptacle for waste.
waste includes garbage and recyclable material.

16. Disposal of waste—shared bins [applicable where bins are shared by lots]

  • An owner or occupier of a lot must not deposit or throw on the common property any rubbish, dirt, dust or other material or discarded item except with the prior written approval of the owners corporation.
  • An owner or occupier of a lot must not deposit in a toilet, or otherwise introduce or attempt to introduce into the plumbing system, any item that is not appropriate for any such disposal (for example, a disposable nappy).
  • An owner or occupier must:
    • comply with all reasonable directions given by the owners corporation as to the disposal and storage of waste (including the cleaning up of spilled waste) on common property, and
    • comply with the local council’s guidelines for the storage, handling, collection and disposal of waste.
  • The owners corporation may give directions for the purposes of this by-law by posting signs on the common property with instructions on the handling of waste that are consistent with the local council’s requirements or giving notices in writing to owners or occupiers of lots.
  • In this by-law:

bin includes any receptacle for waste.
waste includes garbage and recyclable material.

  • Change in use or occupation of lot to be notified
    • An occupier of a lot must notify the owners corporation if the occupier changes the existing use of the lot.
    • Without limiting clause (1), the following changes of use must be notified:
      • a change that may affect the insurance premiums for the strata scheme (for example, if the change of use results in a hazardous activity being carried out on the lot, or results in the lot being used for commercial or industrial purposes rather than residential purposes),
      • a change to the use of a lot for short-term or holiday letting.
    • The notice must be given in writing at least 21 days before the change occurs or a lease or sublease
  • Compliance with planning and other requirements
    • The owner or occupier of a lot must ensure that the lot is not used for any purpose that is prohibited by law.
    • The owner or occupier of a lot must ensure that the lot is not occupied by more persons than are allowed by law to occupy the lot.