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I am an owner of an apartment that is situated close to the common garage door leading to the basement car park.
The garage door has always been noisy, but particularly so lately. It’s quite old, so I suspect wear and tear over time are getting to it. The noise is caused by vibrations from motor or door (or both) permeating through the concrete floors / walls. Hence it goes right through my apartment and the noise is prominent even in my bedrooms.
I have raised it with the body corp manager but they have simply stated that it’s working normally.
Is it fair for me to be putting up with this noise given the location of my apartment, or does body corp have to do something about it?
What would be a reasonable next step in my situation?
Unless you building manager is either a mechanical engineer or an acoustic expert, they can’t say if the gate is functioning as it should. The fact that it opens and closes on demand is not enough.
The owners corporation has an almost unlimited duty to maintain and repair common property. With that in mind, I would do the following:
1. Contact the building manager and politely but firmly tell him/her that I wasn’t satisfied with their answer and I will be taking this to the strata committee or strata manager, with a view, if necessary of taking it to Fair Trading.
2. Do exactly that IN WRITING and if I didn’t get a positive response within two months, initiate Mediation at Fair Trading with a view to seeking orders at NCAT under Section 232(2) “Failure to exercise a function …”
3. In the meantime, gather as much evidence as possible, including a diary of how often and when this occurs, recordings of noise, statements from friends and neighbours and, if possible, an assessment from a gate installer or maintenance firm about the state of the equipment and the level of noise it is generating.
Your approach to the committee should say something like
Although the garage gate is functioning at a base level, it is seriously in need of a radical overhaul and/or replacement, as evidenced by the excessive noise and vibration experienced in my unit whenever it is operated.
As the Owners Corporation has a duty to maintain and repair common property, please advise me of any intention you have to carry out necessary work on the gate, when this will commence and who will be hired to undertake the work.
Please note that I reserve my rights to pursue this under Section 232 (2) of the Strata Schemes management Act 2015, if need be.
Send this to the committee secretary, the strata manager and the building manager and, while the two months are ticking down, start collecting your evidence.
By the way, if they come straight back with a negative response, you can go right ahead and start proceedings with the obligatory Mediation at Fair Trading.
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