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    Topic
  • #49243
    AvatarNice Landlord
    Flatchatter
    Chat-starter

    Would it be unreasonably harsh to introduce a by-law that prevents owners doing conversions (either temporary or permanent) to their lot that would increase their capacity for persons to reside on the lot.

    For example, persons wanting to alter a one bedroom to a two bedroom property, allowing four persons to reside in the lot rather than two persons ( not including family or Indigenous provisions specified in the Act?).

    We have a lot owner who has done this. We took the matter to the NCAT and they ordered an EGM. Despite the EGM being scheduled and not yet held, he has already filed with NCAT for an unreasonable refusal.

    Given he wants retrospective approval for his by-law, would it be possible to introduce a by-law preventing owners from increasing the one bedroom to two bedrooms and two bedrooms to thee bedrooms?

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  • #49439
    AvatarPistonbroke
    Flatchatter

    I would also contend that in older buildings, a DA for an additional bedroom may give rise to several compliance issues including fire upgrades. Any by-law should recognise that the applicant would be responsible for any such required upgrade to the building (this may include but not be limited to the installation of fire doors, exit & emergency signage, fire hose reels, stair pressurisation systems etc) as well as any amendment or redrafting of the Strata Plan or other Council planning requirements for parking etc

    • This reply was modified 1 month, 1 week ago by .
    #49278
    Avatartharra
    Flatchatter

    Some other things to consider:

    Fire safety – do the new “bedrooms” have adequate fire protection? In our building these sorts of proposals disappear due to the cost of fire engineering reports, additions to the sprinkler system, & wired in smoke alarms.

    I also wonder if the strata plan would need to be redrawn to show any new bedrooms? Do the new internal walls form part of common property & need to be reflected on the strata plan?

    A read through the National Construction Code (excellent lockdown reading) might also be useful to see what constitutes a bedroom for your class of building. Bedrooms need minimum dimensions & natural light.

    https://www.abcb.gov.au/Connect/Categories/National-Construction-Code

    #49265
    Jimmy-TJimmy-T
    Keymaster

    And another thing …

    You can’t create a by-law that is superseded by a superior law.  Planning law is a superior law to strata by-laws so any by-law that you created that didn’t recognise that there was a development approval aspect to this would probably be invalid.  As such, your chair could declare it invalid at the start of the meeting.

    Check your local council planning laws to make sure, then insist that the would-be subdivider submits a by-law that complies with both local planning laws and the DA for your building (which may dictate the number of bedrooms in any case).

    Again, this is more of a planning issue than strata, but obviously there is an overlap.

    #49250
    Jimmy-TJimmy-T
    Keymaster

    Most council planning laws require apartment owners to seek development approval before they change the layout of their apartments.

    So get yourself a by-law that says unit owners must seek planning approval (and definitely NOT a complying development certificate) before they do anything like that, and, of course, you object when they apply.

    By the way, you should maybe have gone to council with this complaint, not NCAT, as this sort of thing is very much a planning matter.

    • This reply was modified 1 month, 3 weeks ago by .
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