CEO/President Report – Winter 2021

Welcome to our new look Inside Strata magazine, after previously outsourcing the production, we have now brought the magazine back in house which will allow us to have greater control over the content and make it easier to access via our interactive website.

Andrew Chambers, SCA President

In our last edition we wrote about the challenges that Strata Managers face on a daily basis and unfortunately this has come to light again with many of our members currently in lockdown, dealing with numerous storms and increasing pressures and demands. Our SCA states and chapters have again rallied to support members and those living/working in strata communities by providing advice and assistance in navigating the everchanging rules in each jurisdiction. It is important to remind members that we have resources available to help them and their clients via your local SCA office and websites.

In June 2021, SCA Australasia held their timely National Convention and Annual Awards for delegates who could travel to South Australia. The Awards celebrated those who represent excellence in our community during one of the most challenging years ever. Challenges that only continue, and we keep persevering and adapting. Our conference was made possible with the support of our National Partners, the session sponsors and trade exhibitors.

Advocacy is one of the main roles of SCA and over the past 18 months we have increased this substantially, during the first few months of Covid there were many representations to governments especially in those areas where emergency changes to legislation was required for electronic meetings and the like.

Alisha Fisher, SCA CEO

Keeping Strata Covid Safe for Residents

Over the last 15 months, SCA and its members, both strata management firms and suppliers, have been working to ensure those living and working in strata are kept Covid Safe by implementing best practice recommendations.

In this most recent outbreak, each region has been working closely with their governments to seek clarity around miscommunication to those living in residential strata, and again are seeking clarification on essential services to have each region clearly define the role of essential services in strata as its close-knit communities continue to deal with COVID-19.

With more than two million Australians living in strata communities, the pandemic has made high-density living harder with rising demand on services such as cleaning and maintenance.

High density living has become more complex with Coronavirus. Strata management is not just an essential service – it’s a critical one and will remain so even after this crisis as the economy and communities rebuild.

Approval for upgrading Strata Qualifications by AISC

Mid 2020, SCA submitted via the Property Services Industry Reference Council a case for change following directives from the Australian Industry Skills Committee (AISC). Approval was provided to scope new units of competencies for the CPP40516 Certificate IV in Strata Community Management and to seek requirements for the CPP50316 Diploma in Strata Community Management. Over a 12-month period the new units were scoped, and stakeholder engagement was undertaken with a new Case for Endorsement being placed forward at the 39th meeting of the Australian Industry and Skills Committee (AISC) held on 21 July 2021.

The Committee considered the ten new Cases for Endorsement across ten Industry Reference Committees (IRCs) for referral to Skills Ministers. The Property Services IRC placed forward the Project for Strata Community Management and the proposed upgrade to the qualification for the Cert IV in Strata Community Management has been accepted subject to some minor conditions.

Additionally, it has been agreed to have a strata specialisation stream be added to CPP5119 Diploma of Property (Agency Management), subject to the acceptance of a project plan demonstrating completion by the end of 2021.

SCA will have its working group begin this project plan.

Strata Insurance Research Report

In 2020, SCA National established the SCA National Strata insurance Taskforce, a body of 12 strata management and strata insurance representatives from across Australian jurisdictions to scope and formulate industry positions, action plans, make recommendations and provide representation and input into strata insurance advocacy.

SCA and the taskforce have held meetings with government representatives, filed submissions, written articles, press releases and member communications among other actions.

This past July, a report by Deakin University has been finalised to give an in-depth summary of strata insurance in each state and territory in Australia, the challenges faced by the industry and potential solutions. This report will be officially launched in August and SCA will be making representations to federal, state and territory government representatives and regulators.

Communicating with your Strata Manager

In this edition of Inside Strata, we also include a guideline for residents living in strata properties developed by SCA (WA), with review by Wal Dobrow.

Strata Managers will often manage up to 60 schemes, comprising hundreds of owners, tenants and other service personnel which can generate over 300 emails daily. Emails by residents are important to their Strata Manager and they will respond, however, each day they encounter emergencies, and these matters will always be given priority.

The contribution of our National Partners cannot be underestimated, and we would like to welcome our latest national partner BIV Reports. They join BCB, CHU, Grace Lawyers, Macquarie Bank, and Active along with our education partner Kelly + Partners and business partner nbn. If you have not yet connected with our Partners, please do so as they support our industry.

Strata Community Association – The unified, dominant voice of Strata in Australia & New Zealand.

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