What’s mine? What’s ours?

11 Feb 2013

Monday, February 11th, 2013

House owners have it fairly easy when it comes to the ownership of their homes and surrounding land. They know it’s all theirs and when in doubt a local council or government department will hold a plan that shows the boundaries.

Apartment owners know that this is not necessarily the case and many have been left scratching their heads about what part of the property they own and are responsible for and what is part of the owners corporation remit.

The confusion has led to many disputes and there are a plethora of lawyers out there who specialise in providing advice on common property issues.

One initiative that has attracted interest is the Who’s responsible? guide, which was developed by Strata Community Australia (NSW) members to try to address the issues around common property ownership and has recently been adopted as an official document by the NSW Government. The guide aims to provide some certainty around what is common property.

It says that generally, in most strata schemes, the lot owner owns the airspace and everything in it within the boundary of the unit. They don’t own the main structure of the building.

The guide then provides a list of items that could reasonably be expected to form a part of the common property and therefore be the responsibility of the owners corporation. Items such as:

  • balcony columns and railings
  • TV aerials
  • guttering
  • intercom handset
  • blocked floor drains
  • garage line markings
  • main car park garage doors

Individual owners are responsible for:

  • Bathroom cabinets, shower screens, basins and toilet bowls and cisterns
  • Paintwork within their apartment
  • Light switches in their apartment
  • Security cards and keys
  • Internal carpet and linoleum
  • Built in wardrobes and cupboards
  • Stoves and ovens
  • Water leaking from shower taps or baths

Some areas can be grey about ownership for example the owner may be responsible for fixing a leaking shower tap but may jointly be responsible with the owners corporation for attending to a leaking shower. Remember when in doubt seek professional advice.

Disclaimer: The information provided above is a general guide only and not intended as a substitute for legal advice. The company disclaims all responsibility and all liability for any expenses, losses, damages and costs which might be incurred as a result of the information provided by the company in this article.


# At 8:30am, July 5, 2015, Joelso said:
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# At 2:55am, October 14, 2015, Waleed said:
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JohannJustin McBride b7 Attorney at Marais Muller Yekiso Inc.Hi DeemisterI am representing a ceinlt on a similiar matter. If they are acting the same, you may want to join us in a class action against them. The following points are at issue. was a valid contract signed, look at your contract, there is a condition that states that the contract is not concluded until they have tested you for credit worthiness. This is as a suspensive condition. If my matter is the same, there would be no date to fulfil this condition which would mean that they would need to fufill it in a reasonable time. in my matter they did not inform that ceinlt would be accepted and my ceinlt cancelled the contract. A reasonable time for fulfillment should be two weeks. Irrespective of this, under the Consumner protection act you would have 5 days after the contract to cancel, alternatively, you can cancel an agreement with 20 days notice. It is probably true that you would have been in either one of those, and I bet that to date they have not advised you that you have been accepted as a member or that credit has been granted which means that the contract has not yet come into existance and can be cancelled.Reply b7 2 b7 Likeb7 September 28 at 7:09am
# At 8:11am, October 21, 2015, Bobby said:
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同意好康兄所說 貪腐瀆職是很有可能的 但現時還沒有證據 所以很難說 執法不嚴 我倒不大同意 衛生部或質檢總局跟著會如何執法 刑事起訴 撤除免檢資格或禁售等等 還有待觀察 現在首先碰到的問題其實不是執法不嚴 而是延遲執法 早該回收的拖到現在才回收 當然 好康兄可能覺得我在咬文嚼字 因為廣義而言 延遲執法也是執法不嚴的一種 但我想強調的其實是普通法入面一個概念 就是 "justice delayed is jutisce denied" 內地雖不是行普通法 但我覺得有關官員如果能理解這個概念的話 便不會搞到如斯田地了
# At 5:33am, December 26, 2015, Sabrina said:
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marsha gomez - Tuve la aportunidad de comer hoy en pica pica !! todo es desiicolo!!! estoy de visita desde novato y espero regresar muy pronto a comer sus delicias!! el cervicio al cliente estubo perfecto ! la muchacha fue muy amable en explicarme el significado del nombre PICA PICA .August 28, 2011 11:30 pm
# At 8:17pm, December 26, 2015, Anita said:
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Nice article Jim! Although I would never buy a vacoitan property (I don't want to be tied to the same holiday every year), I was thinking that for us to fly the extended family down to Florida and do a one-week cruise it probably cost close to $16K. In that context, having access to a 2-bedroom unit for a whole year doesn't sound so bad!
# At 7:03pm, March 29, 2016, Mateen said:
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I just hope whveeor writes these keeps writing more!

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