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  • #8199

    Hi Jimmy,

    I live in a predominately strata street of home units & duplexes.  Beside me is a strata duplex, the owners of which has taken up drying theirlaundry on he front balcony, which is level with mine.  This is most unsightly as she washes several times a week.  I have not seen any other balcony in the street with washing hung out to dry in the last 20 years!

    I have spoken to the neighbours and asked them to refrain from this, but without success. 

    My strata by-laws prevent me from drying washing on balconies in the building.  Is this a common strata by-law?  How can I find out whether the drying of clothes on the balcony is allowed under the by-laws in the neighbouring duplex?

    Yours desperately


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  • #15719
    Sir Humphrey

    I just don’t get the objection to laundry drying on a balcony. The cheapest and best value for money solar equipment is a clothesline. I am far more offended by one of my neighbours who never puts her washing on a line, on the balcony or anywhere else. She thinks we should all be using electric dryers! 


    I tend to agree, Peter, but Flat Chat is a broad church and we try to accommodate all views. Interesting, when I was researching my answer I came across an attempt to ban electric dryers from one council area. And I believe some councils are insisting on communal drying lines on the roof (for instance) so at least there is an alternative.

    Sir Humphrey

    I understand that this topic does arouse passions! I think the trend is to tolerance and even encouragement of open air drying on environmental grounds. Reducing the use of electric clothes dryers is very low hanging fruit among the range of measures one can take to reduce greenhouse gas emissions or reduce your electricity bill. In the ACT a Rule (Bylaw) is now invalid if it prevents a sustainability measure. I think balcony drying could only be banned by an ACT OC’s Rules if the OC provided a good alternative such as roof-top drying or some other location that was sufficiently practical for residents, at least that is my interpretation.  I think QLD has something similar.


    I recently visited a friend who has just moved in to a new apartment. This is complex has a rule of no washing what so ever. No communal lines, no balcony drying, no courtyard/garden drying. No buts about it. Luckily my friend has enough space to dry inside as well as using the dryer.

    I have to say that this complex looked like a resort. It is strict on other rules too such as only one type/colour blinds to be seen from outside. Together with well kept grounds and nothing unsightly to be seen, it looked very neat and orderly. I don’t see how a little washing discreetly placed on a balcony or courtyard would affect the look of this complex. Though it’s when you allow people a little then they display commercial quantities of laundry that the look of a complex could be affected let alone the visual disturbance to neighbours.


    As Jimmy often mentions, the hip pocket is a sensitive area with owners of real estate.

    Is the sight of washing being dried on a balcony going to detract from the value of another unit looking in on it or even from the others in the block of units where the washing is being dried on the balcony?

    “Probably” is my answer.

    Electric clothes drying isn’t the answer with electricity costs soon rising by 18% or whatever it is. Community clothes lines or one or two indoor clothes horses of your own left in any spare space (such as the bath or shower recess when not being used) may be. Thats works for us.

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