An ode to ARAMA
23 Jan 2015
I am still astonished me as I bounce around the management rights community to find people that have invested heavily in management rights, or make their living from it (as I do), who are not members of ARAMA. Some of those people can be are quite vocal as to why they are not members.
Any organisation comes with its issues. Schisms, splits, laziness, indulgence, skullduggery. Sort of like what happens with body corporate committees. Or large law firms. Those things happen. They will always happen.
Irrespective of that, ARAMA is the only body standing between the management rights industry and the opponents of the management rights industry. And there are some quite vocal opponents at times.
You might have a sour taste in your mouth with ARAMA for some reason. Perhaps you had a bad experience a few years ago with an ARAMA committee member. Maybe you didn’t get the returned phone call you wanted. Maybe an ARAMA staffer couldn’t give you the advice you wanted. That doesn’t mean to me that that you should not contribute by being a member of the only organisation that will actively seek to prevent the anti-management rights brigade from hurting the management rights industry.
We had an ARAMA group meeting a few weeks ago to help collate ARAMA’s response to the latest BCCM review paper. Six lawyers (notionally in competition with each other) all in the one room with a common cause, which is supporting the management rights industry. Only ARAMA could facilitate that. It wouldn’t happen without it.
I personally think that any person who owns a management rights business should be an ARAMA member. That comments applies equally to service providers who make their living (or a substantial part of it) from the management rights industry. Those that don’t support ARAMA leave the burden of protecting the management rights industry only to the paid up members.
Strength is in numbers. The government listens to numbers.
Our firm is a fully paid up member. We are quite proud of that. The services we provide to ARAMA are free. That is a little way for us to give back to the industry which is obviously a fairly large part of our legal practice. We are not Robinson Crusoe in terms of our contribution to ARAMA. All of the lawyers on the lawyer’s panel do their bit.
The benefit of ARAMA as an organisation was quite clearly seen in the recent Property Occupations Act amendments which is something that, but for the involvement of ARAMA over many years, simply would not have happened the way it did. The legislation and forms were changed through ARAMA’s intervention to help management rights owners.
And there is more legislative change on the way. The balance of the Body Corporate and Community Management Act amendments. The next attack on the tenure of management rights agreements, which seems to happen at least every five years or so. The review of the Property Occupations Act regulations.
Of course, on top of those, there will be various policy positions taken by government departments and the Office of Fair Trading which could impact adversely on management rights owners. Everyone needs to chip in to make ARAMA viable because without that support, the management rights industry could be left in a very vulnerable position.
Everyone involved in the management rights industry can do their bit by at least becoming an ARAMA member. You can contribute more to the organisation if you have the time and the inclination, but an ARAMA membership is at least a very good place to start.
Click here to find out more about ARAMA.