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Forum: Trapped in lockdown renovation Hell

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Regular readers of Flat Chat may remember how last year we wrote about a Melbourne couple who were enduring the living Hell of a major renovation taking place in an adjacent apartment while they were stuck at home during the lockdown.

Back then, there were regulations in Victoria preventing people from renovating in apartment blocks during the lockdown.

As we reported then, renovators flouted the regs, the strata chair didn’t want to get involved, the building manager – who was doing his own reno elsewhere – scoffed and the cops didn’t know whose job it was to stop the work (it was theirs, by the way).

Well, so far in NSW there are no regulations to stop work inside buildings during the Sydney restrictions … at least not yet, while we’re in the midst of an open-ended lockdown that could end next week (but won’t).

And that has turned what was a major irritation into a nightmare for one Flatchatter. For weeks, Sydneyguy has been enduring hammering and drilling associated with an upgrade to fire safety in his block.

Until last week, he was able to go to work or out to cafes to get away from most of it, but now he’s stuck at home, enduring the awful din.

He had already approached his rental agent about getting either a rent reduction or some kind of compensation, but to no avail.  So is there anything he can do?

If he wants immediate relief, he could ask the rental agent to ask the landlord to ask the owners corporation to tell the contractors to limit the noisy work to certain times on specific days. It’s a palaver but that’s the chain of communication.

All major contracts have project managers and it’s part of their job to find exactly those kinds of compromises.  And if the agent/landlord/strata committee refuses, then Sydneyguy has clear grounds for a claim for compensation now and rent reduction in the future if (when) there is another lockdown or this one is extended.

Are you going through reno Hell in your block? Read about Sydneyguy, and the advice offered so far, HERE.

Elsewhere in the Forum

  • A sub-par tradie’s incompetence has extended to not invoicing for the work done (badly).  What should I do?  That’s HERE.
  • The strata committee is demanding very thick sound insulation for my timber floor, meaning I will have to lift all my doors. But the specs are not in the by-laws. Can they do that?  That’s HERE.
  • How can I split my house from a small-scale NT strata scheme?  That’s HERE.
  • My upstairs neighbour (in Victoria) has installed a noisy hard floor and the building manager says it’s not their problem.  Is it?  You’ll be surprised HERE.
  • When a strata committee’s “private” discussions can become public knowledge. That’s HERE.

There are a lot more questions and answers on the Forum which is enjoying a huge upsurge in readership (probably thanks to the Sydney lockdown).

The best way to keep up to speed with what’s happening is to register (if you haven’t already done so), then login and subscribe to the topics that interest you most.

That way you’ll get an alert whenever the discussion moves forward, and you can also chip in with your own comments and questions.  Have a look HERE at our instant guide to getting online.

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