What is an owners’ corporation?

What is the role of an owners’ corporation manager?

What service charges apply to the Industry?

What is there to know when living in an Owners’ Corporation?

What is the difference between a lot owner’s responsibility and common areas?
What are units of liability and entitlement?
The plan of subdivision sets out the lot entitlement and lot liability of each owners’ corporation member. Every plan of subdivision contains a list of lots and a corresponding allocation of a unit entitlement. Lot entitlement is the proportionate share of ownership of owners’ corporation assets, including the common property (Eg: relates to a share in the common property such as for the use of a driveway, lift or vehicle gate). It also determines voting rights at a meeting or with respect to a postal ballot for the owners’ corporation. Lot liability is the proportion of Owners Corporation expenses (Eg: relates to the contribution attributed towards say renewing the insurance or proportion of maintenance levies or obligation to contribute to repair and maintenance of common property) the lot owner is obliged to pay. 

How is the annual budget set?  
As part of determining fees for the financial year, the Manager estimates the cost of administration, maintenance, insurance and contributions based on previous years whilst taking into account any upcoming projects or necessary works which need to be budgeted. The owners’ corporation manager will prepare and issue a proposed budget for your property prior to the AGM. Any feedback on the financials typically needs to be received prior to the AGM. Without available funds, your owners’ corporation may be unable to engage contractors or renew the insurance. All of the above aspects are factored into the numbers when preparing your budget.

Where can I find a copy of the Financial Services Guides (FSG)?
A copy of the FSG is available on request.

How do I update my contact details?
It is the responsibility of owner’s to notify the Manager of any changes in tenancy details (including Industry type). This is a requirement of the Insurance Underwriter with respect to the associated risk. Should you need to update any ownership contact information please complete and return the Owner Questionnaire.
What is the process to replace a fence?  
Dividing fences are a common source of most neighbourhood disputes. State legislation covers the rules for working out who pays for the dividing fence and also what happens if there are disputes about where the boundary lies. These laws apply to the owners’ corporation. However, if one neighbour wants a fence of a different standard, that neighbour will usually pay the additional cost involved. As for construction of the fence, if there is a disagreement as to the fence or cost sharing, application may be made to the Magistrate's Court for determination. If there is a dispute about the boundary line, a land surveyor needs to be engaged to fix the boundary. That said, replacing a fence tends to be a protracted activity which generally will take time to complete given all the parties involved. The following is the determination and cost sharing for land affected by an owners’ corporation:
 - A dividing fence between a lot and the common property is shared between the owner of the lot and the owners corporation.
 - A dividing fence between two lots is shared equally between the lot owners.
 - A boundary fence between a lot and an adjoining property is shared between the lot owners and the adjoining property owner. 
 - A boundary fence between common property and an adjoining property is shared between the owners corporation and the adjoining property owner.
In terms of next steps, please be aware of the following process:
•	Obtain 2 quotes to replace the fence
•	Either discuss the matter at the AGM or issue a postal ballot to all owners with the included quotations
•	Send fence quotes to the Neighbouring site/OC Manager. If the ownership details of the neighbour are not known then our office will ask an owner to contact their local council (due to the Privacy Act) for these details. 
The Fences Act 1968 provides that adjoining owners are required to equally share in the costs to replace a fence. If there is a dispute about the standard of fencing, a neighbour must give the other a notice to fence which sets out the type, location, length and cost of the proposed fence. 
•	Strike the fence levy with OC members to fund the project
•	Give the go ahead to the selected Fence contractor
•	Fence contractor is obliged to give affected owner’s 7-days notices prior to any works commencing
What can you do about that overhanging tree branch?
Trees are a common source of dispute between neighbours. Overhanging branches and encroaching roots have the potential to cause property damage and personal injury, and they can also affect the way you enjoy your property. It is always best to resolve any problems over trees directly with your neighbour. This will be quicker, cheaper and less stressful than any other channels. Before considering any action, you should talk to your neighbour about the problem and ask them politely to prune the tree back to the fence line, dig up the roots or provide you with assistance and vice versa. Think carefully about the trees and shrubs you are planting; and if they may become a problem in the future discuss the potential issue with your neighbour directly.

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Owners’ Corporation functions are not those of real estate agents. Please ensure you direct your property management enquiry to the appropriate channels.,Responsibilities