Body Corporate FAQs
Who is responsible for maintaining common property?
In almost all cases, the responsibility for maintaining common property falls on a strata scheme’s body corporate.
Swimming pools, foyers, gardens – a body corporate must maintain common property, and each lot owner must maintain their lot. The exception can be where a lot owner installs something on common property.
What constitutes ‘common property’?
The question then comes down to: What constitutes ‘common property’.
This will depend on whether the scheme is a building format plan (which applies to most high-rise apartment buildings) or a standard format plan, such as most townhouse complexes. A high-rise will never be standard format, but a townhouse can be building format.
Under a building format plan, the common property will extend to railings, balustrades, membranes, supporting framework, roofing structures that provide protection and more.
The onus then is on the body corporate to take responsibility for maintaining those additional aspects of a scheme.
The different body corporate responsibilities for these types of plans come into focus with two particular issues: termite damage and fixtures/fittings in a lot.
Hynes Webinars for repairs and maintenance in Body Corporates
Improvements vs. maintenance: https://blog.hyneslegal.com.au/webinars/improvements-vs-maintenance
Where a body corporate was held liable for damage to a lot-owner’s car because common property was not maintained: http://www.austlii.edu.au/cgi-bin/viewdoc/au/cases/qld/QBCCMCmr/2019/78.html?context=1;query=damage%20to%20vehicle;mask_path=au/cases/qld/QBCCMCmr