Renters: cuts all round

QUESTION: The owners in our building have just cut the concierge services so they can reduce their levies,  meaning that not only do we no longer have 24-hour security, we…

Dog flap

QUESTION: The Executive Committee at our complex has received an application from a resident to install a doggy door on to their balcony.  Our building manager has told us we…

Renters: Between bonds

QUESTION: I’m leaving my apartment to move somewhere closer to work, I’ve given my notice and everything is fine.  The problem is, with the cost of moving house, buying a…

Plan to ban renovations

QUESTION: A slim majority on our executive committee want to introduce a new by-law to prevent owners making any internal structural renovations to their units because recent work done was…

Renters: Rights and wrongs

Noise, nuisance and in-your-face “couldn’t give a stuff” attitude.  Sure, there are some tenants like that but what happens when an owner is the problem and tenants are the victims?…

Renters: Sitting tenants

QUESTION: We have been on a series of one-year fixed-term leases with our current landlord which has been fine but now we are seriously thinking of buying our own apartment.…

How to stage a revolution

The executive committees and chairmen of strata blocks get a hard time – usually unfairly since they can’t please everyone and are giving up their time for free.  But every…

Votes for all

It’s a bit of a tenants’ special this week, given that we’re launching our dedicated tenants column.  And it’s not before time. Tenants generally get a bad press (not on…

Money for nothing

One of the most common complaints in strata living is about levies and specifically, why people should have to pay for things they don’t use. But there’s no such as…

Towering Inferno

Ever wonder why flat roofs, especially on older buildings, often have pebbles on them?  Decoration? Drainage? Or something very “now” that the original builders probably didn’t even think about? QUESTION:…

Hot topic, cold facts

Even if you believe there is no such thing as Global Warming (and the earth must be flat or the Nile would flow uphill, right?) saving energy and other resources…

Suite and sour

“You treat this place like a hotel,” is a common cry from parents as their teenage kids come and go at will.  But what if someone actually did run your…

Choice cuts

I got an email the other week from a reader whose building has been effectively taken over by a nuisance couple who are abrasive and abusive. Things have got so…

State of emergency

Long-time readers of this column will be amazed at this week’s question. For once, a strata manager isn’t accused of doing too little; the complaint is they are doing too…