Flat Chat Forum Strata Committees Current Page

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  • #53153
    Avatarmark1980
    Flatchatter

    We had a general meeting today and I nominated myself for members of the strata committee. Currently I am having a dispute with the OC regarding a common property repair. I submitted a strata mediation through NSW fair trading. Because of this, the strata manager said I’m not eligible for the nomination. We have to resolve the dispute first. Is that correct? What if an existing member has a dispute with the OC? Does she/he have to get out of the committee first? Cheers

    • This topic was modified 1 week, 6 days ago by .
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  • #53354
    Jimmy-TJimmy-T
    Keymaster

    BTW, I had a conveyencor to look at these matters, would strata minutes searching be one of their duties?

    There are searhes and there are searches.  A more thorough (and therefor more expensive) search would have turned up the debt to council, an ordinary search probably wouldn’t have.  You get what you pay for.

    I recall one case where a purchaser’s lawyer’s strata search failed to pick up strata committee notes that they were intending to ban pets fom the building.  By the time whe had exchanged, the new by-law was in place and she was told she couldn’t bring her dog into the building, even though she had chosen that flat becasue the block was supposedly pet friendly.

    • This reply was modified 5 days, 9 hours ago by .
    #53348
    Avatarmark1980
    Flatchatter
    Chat-starter

    … at this point I’m getting preilously close to giving legal advice which I am not qualified to do. You should talk to a lawyer

    I really appreciate your time and explanations! I’ll definitely seek legal advice.

    • This reply was modified 5 days, 9 hours ago by .
    #53349
    Avatarmark1980
    Flatchatter
    Chat-starter

    This is really between you and the previous owner (and whoever did the search on the strata minutes before you bought). In reality, I think you’ve missed your chance.

    BTW, I had a conveyencor to look at these matters, would strata minutes searching be one of their duties?

    • This reply was modified 5 days, 9 hours ago by .
    #53346
    Jimmy-TJimmy-T
    Keymaster

    The extraordinary general meeting was conducted almost half year ago. Now it seems that it was conducted in a wrong way. Does that mean the absolution of maintenance by-law they passed at the meeting is not valid? Or that it passes a time limit, it cannot be undone?

    The limit on challenging by-laws is, I think, two years.  However, there is a wrinkle in strata law that says that says just becasue an element of a meeting was wrong, not all the decisions taken at that meeting are invalid. It’s complicated and you would  probably have to show that the actual decision to create the by-law was improperly taken.

    And at this point I’m getting preilously close to giving legal advice which I am not qualified to do.  You should talk to a lawyer.

    #53341
    Avatarmark1980
    Flatchatter
    Chat-starter

    This is definitely not right. Owners are absolutely allowed to attend committee meetings but they can only speak if invited to. I think it’s safe to say your committee members and/or strata manager don’t know what they are doing or do know what they are doing but have decided to flout strata law.

    The extraordinary general meeting was conducted almost half year ago. Now it seems that it was conducted in a wrong way. Does that mean the absolution of maintenance by-law they passed at the meeting is not valid? Or that it passes a time limit, it cannot be undone?

    #53343
    Jimmy-TJimmy-T
    Keymaster

    Will Strata Answers represent a client to deal with OC and strata manager?

    They used to, for a fee.  Don’t know if they still do as they are now providing strata education services for City of Sydney.  You might also call Sachs Gerace and see how much it would cost to get them to write a letter to your strata manager explaining how they have broken the law and what they need to do to fix it..

    By the way, you might also explain that it doesn’t matter what the committee decided regarding conflicts of interest – the law is the law and they can’t ignore it when it suits them.

    And I would report the strata manager to Fair Trading immediately.

     

    • This reply was modified 5 days, 10 hours ago by .
    #53338
    Avatarmark1980
    Flatchatter
    Chat-starter

    I would also consider contacting our sponsors Strata Answers and asking them to come in, give the committee and the strata managers the facts of life (for a fee) and then try to move on from there.

    Thanks, Jimmy! Will Strata Answers represent a client to deal with OC and strata manager? I registered on their website a while ago and my impression is they answer your questions and give suggestions.

    • This reply was modified 5 days, 10 hours ago by .
    #53337
    Jimmy-TJimmy-T
    Keymaster

    … the strata owes council 2 years of water related bill from years before. I just became an owner early this year. Should I pay this bill?

    This is really between you and the previous owner (and whoever did the search on the strata minutes before you bought).  In reality, I think you’ve missed your chance.

    The level of non-compliance and incompetetence in your block is incredible.  I would be raising a complaint with Fair Trading about the strata manager and would seriously consider taking action at NCAT to have the other members kicked off the committee under Section 238 of the Act.

    Or you could just say to the committee members and the strata managers that these are your options and do they want to do this the easy way or the hard way?

    I would also consider contacting our sponsors Strata Answers and asking them to come in, give the committee and the strata managers  the facts of life (for a fee) and then try to move on from there.

    #53330
    Avatarmark1980
    Flatchatter
    Chat-starter

    During the general meeting last week, they were discussing raising strata fee. One reason is that the strata owes council 2 years of water related bill from years before. I just became an owner early this year. Should I pay this bill? At the meeting, I didn’t think of this inappropriate. But now think of it……

    #53334
    Jimmy-TJimmy-T
    Keymaster

    I attended the first half of the meeting. I wasn’t allowed to attend the second half where they discussed the absolution of maintenance by-law, because I wasn’t a committee member. Was this right? The owners are not allowed to attend committee meetings if they are not a member?

    This is definitely not right.  Owners are absolutely allowed to attend committee meetings but they can only speak if invited to.  I think it’s safe to say your committee members and/or strata manager don’t know what they are doing or do know what they are doing but have decided to flout strata law.

    #53329
    Avatarmark1980
    Flatchatter
    Chat-starter

    Out of 11 owners, 7 of them are investors. And they don’t attend these meetings. So the 2 OC members decide everything around here. I suspect other meetings were conducted in the right way. We had an Extraordinary General Meeting in June this year and they passed an absolution of maintenance by-law. That’s why they said I need to take care of the balcony sliding door issues. I attended the first half of the meeting. I wasn’t allowed to attend the second half where they discussed the absolution of maintenance by-law, because I wasn’t a committee member. Was this right? The owners are not allowed to attend committee meetings if they are not a member?

    #53328
    Avatarmark1980
    Flatchatter
    Chat-starter

    Thanks a lot for your comments, Pamster! I’ll definitely cite your case.

    #53292
    AvatarPamster
    Flatchatter

    Hi, So read about your issues, believe me I know how frustrated you must be. I was also unlawfully and incorrectly denied the right to self nominate for the Strata committee at the AGM, and again it was the Strata Manager who said I was not allowed to self nominate.  The only ‘punishment’ for the SM’s error this was an “education session” from Dept of Fair trading.

    I also lived in a small block of only 6 units.  The outcome was long winded and led to the other two members of the committee – but mainly the secretary, disparaging me to the other owners, this meant that year after year it became impossible for me to get a spot on the committee, despite being the only resident occupier in the block.  Thank heavens proxy harvesting was banned so it is not as easy for one person to do this anymore.  I took my case to NCAT and the Adjudicator stated that I had been adversely affected by not being able to self nominate. Maybe you could cite this case in your dealings with the SM and the committee?

    https://www.austlii.edu.au/cgi-bin/viewdoc/au/cases/nsw/NSWCATCD/2015/65.html?context=1;query=williamson;mask_path=au/cases/nsw/NSWCATCD

    See Paragraphs 30 and 39

     

    #53206
    Avatarmark1980
    Flatchatter
    Chat-starter

    Hi Jimmy. I really appreciate your time!

    #53188
    Jimmy-TJimmy-T
    Keymaster

    So what’s the time limit? The general meeting was 9am Friday 20//11 . Let’s say, they give me the right to nominate myself. What if the 2 members all veto … is it possible for them to keep me out of the committee?

    The time limit on Section 25 (denied a vote) is 28 days. Section 24, (improperly conducted election) doesn’t have a time limit specified but I wouldn’t go beyond 28 days.

    There are two options here.  The first, being co-opted on to the committee, would allow a “veto” since the existing committee member are the only ones who vote on your admission to the committee, after it has been elected at a General Meeting.

    If you present this as a compromise, to avoid another NCAT confrontation which you will surely win, maybe they will see sense.

    If they refuse, even after you explain why the strata manager is wrong, then you have to challenge the election at Fair Trading and NCATso that it has to be conducted again and then you can nominate.

    Your problem then is to convince a majority of owners, not so much that you have been denied your legal rights, but that the strata scheme is facing unnecessary expenses because of poor decisions based on false premises.  You want to join the committee to put things on an even keel.

    The issue with the entry gate motor is one example.  That could and should have been dealt with without anyone having to go to Fair Trading.  The highly dubious decision to deny you the right to stand for election has just compounded the problem where bad and legally questionable decisions pile on top of each other.

    One argument might be that the owners corporation is being encouraged to avoid its responsibility to maintain and repair common property by a strata manager who cites aspects of strata law that don’t exist.

    It’s a truism of strata that trying to avoid paying legitimate expenses for repairs always ends up costing more when you have to go through the hassles of an NCAT challenge and then have to do the repairs anyway.

    The committee members are clearly getting dubious advice that they follow because they think it will save the scheme money.  You will need to convince the other owners that these are false economies and they could be doing better.

    Yoiur next challenge will be to convince the strata manager to provide you with the email addresses of all the non-resident owners.  Give the SM’s previous actions, I’d bet they will cite privacy issues for not doing so.  This, again, would be pure BS.

    Owners are entitled to see all records of the strata scheme and that includes email addresses where they have been provided.

    • This reply was modified 1 week, 4 days ago by .
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