SCA has been a heavy contributor to the ANZSCO reclassification process over the past months, specifically advocating for strata managers to be included as their own unit group under the framework. A strata manager unit group allocation is an essential for recognition as the professional occupation it is, and a monumental step towards the regulation of strata managers in the long term.
In the face of a cost-of-living crisis, the topic of strata insurance commissions has maintained a strong presence in the national discourse. SCA is working hard to ensure that strata stakeholders, government and the wider national audience are aware of the value that strata managers provide in the strata insurance placement process, and we are very close to releasing our Strata Insurance Disclosure Best Practice Guides, which will prove a pivotal tool for members and consumers alike.
Australian Capital Territory
The ACT Government recently implemented a landmark minimum energy efficiency standard for rental homes, a regulation under the Residential Tenancies Act 1997 that requires all residential rental properties in the ACT to meet a new minimum energy efficiency standard for ceiling insulation.
SCA (ACT) has been engaged by the government to assist strata managers, owners corporations and apartment owners in this critical transition period. This has notably included supporting the provision of apartment specific fact sheets, that demonstrate step-by-step the actions an apartment rental provider must undertake to comply with the new standard.
New South Wales
SCA (NSW) has maintained a strong focus on its collaboration with the NSW Government, who is showing an increased recognition of the challenges the strata industry is facing. Specifically, SCA (NSW) is continuing its ongoing cooperation with both the NSW Property Commissioner and NSW Building Commissioner, supporting their work to fight for improved outcomes for sector and its stakeholders.
Importantly, SCA (NSW) also recently had the opportunity to meet with the newly appointed Minister for Better Regulation and Fair Trading, The Hon. Anoulack Chanthivong, who has shown a keen interest in the strata sector. SCA (NSW) is excited to continue to raise the bar of strata with his ongoing support.
The recent passing of the Unit Titles (Strengthening Body Corporate Governance and Other Matters) Amendment Act 2022 saw the introduction of a raft of changes, aimed at improving body corporate governance and protecting consumers.
In order for necessary changes to information requests, electronic voting and tribunal costs to be implemented under the Amendment Act this year, a set of regulations are required for the Unit Titles Act 2010. Through the consultation and collaboration of our diverse membership, SCA (NZ) prepared a comprehensive response to the proposed regulations, aimed at ensuring the changes are introduced to the overall benefit of the body corporate management industry of NZ.
Queensland has recently seen the introduction of the Body Corporate and Community Management and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2023 into Parliament. The bill represents a significant change to the powers wielded by a body corporate in the state, limiting the introduction of bylaws to ban pets, as well as allowing by-laws that prohibit smoking (including vapes) on common property or an outdoor area such as a balcony.
SCA (Qld) has known these changes have been coming for a long while, and have worked closely alongside the Attorney General to ensure the legislation is introduced smoothly, and is balanced to meet everyone’s needs.
South Australia / Northern Territory
SCA (SA/NT) is eagerly awaiting the results of feedback provided regarding proposed changes to the South Australian Strata Titles Act 1988 and Community Titles Act 1996, in the form of the draft Statutes Amendment (Community and Strata Titles) Bill 2022. The Bill is one of the most substantial pieces of strata legislation South Australia has seen in recent years, and its effective implementation is critical to protect the needs of strata stakeholders in the state.
SCA (SA/NT) is also preparing the establishment of an NT Advocacy Working Group in the coming months, aimed at rectifying the specific challenges that our membership is facing, and bringing strata to the forefront of the government’s agenda.
Reforms to the Strata Titles Act 1998 are still being considered by the Tasmanian Government. These reforms promise to address the key issue areas of body corporate insurance, common property and service infrastructure, disclosure of body corporate information and records, dispute resolution processes and the regulation of strata managers. SCA (Tas) is motivated to push government to usher the reforms through as quickly as possible.
SCA (Vic) has been busy meeting with the Victorian Government and providing advocacy on issues which are important to members putting forward our policy priorities and industry concerns.
The Victorian Government is presently working on development of a standardised Building Manual, to help ensure the safety of buildings. SCA (Vic) has been actively involved in meeting with the Department of Transport and Planning to provide feedback to further refine the building manual concept. In addition, SCA (Vic) recently provided a submission to the Victorian Parliament regarding rental and housing affordability, and are currently working on providing further submissions and feedback to state and local government across a variety of strata-related matters.
SCA (WA) continues to work closely alongside the WA Land Titles Office (Landgate), working through regulatory and legislative issues that significantly impact the sector. Notably, SCA (WA) was recently presented with the 2022 Annual Returns Data for the strata management sector in WA, which highlighted the ongoing growth, size and contribution of the sector to the wider economy in WA.
The state government recently introduced amendments to the Perth Parking Management Act, updating the 25-yearold piece of legislation. Advocating to fix issues relating to the application of the Perth Parking Levy is something that SCA (WA) is particularly passionate about as strata residents in mixed use communities continue to be charged for parking spaces they do not utilise.