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Strata Community Festive Season

By October 7, 2021November 26th, 2021No Comments

With the festive season fast approaching and more social gatherings being organised, having good etiquette in your strata community is particularly important.

While celebrating this time of year can be  fun, there are still rules to be mindful of, this will ensure that you keep peace between your neighbours and avoid any breaches or conflict.

Here are a few top tips for a successful festive season at your strata community

Noise complaints

Identify which unit the noise is coming from and, if it is safe to do so, have an open conversation with them about the noise. It is easy for residents to be unaware of the noise they are making especially in apartments.

If the noise continues, the matter can be escalated and reported to the Strata Scheme in writing, stating specifically the dates and times when noise occurs and what the nature of the noise is (ie shouting, TV playing too loudly, pet barking, etc).

If the noisy neighbour is not another lot within the complex, the issue should be reported to the Local Shire for investigation or the Police Assistance Centre may be contacted on 131 444 at the time when the noise occurs.

Smoking

If some of your guests are smoking when they visit your property, it’s important to be aware of smoke drifting into neighbouring homes.

By-laws

Are there any restrictions on where you can place Christmas decorations? It’s worth checking before you start decking the common hallways and foyers.

Read more about by-laws here.

Shared facilities

If your strata community has shared common space such as BBQ area, pool or gym, it’s best to be considerate of other residents. Keep watch for any inebriated guests to ensuring they do not disturb your neighbours and, don’t forget to check if your strata community has a booking system for shared facilities to avoid disappointment. Sometimes it can slip your mind when you’re having fun, but remember  to leave the area clean and tidy.

Parking

The first step is to have a conversation with the owner of the vehicle if they can be identified. Some residents may be new to the building and may not be aware of the rules/by-laws around parking. If issues persist, speak to your Strata Manager to see how we can help.

Section 1 of Schedule 2 – Conduct By-Laws of the STAA 2018, states the following;

  1. Vehicles and parking 

An owner or occupier of a lot must take all reasonable steps to ensure that the owner’s or occupier’s visitors comply with the scheme by-laws relating to the parking of motor vehicles.

An owner or occupier of a lot must not park or stand any motor or other vehicle on common property except with the written approval of the Strata Company.

Read more about parking here.

Excess Rubbish

It is best to be mindful of all residents if you are planning to host guests in your unit, this can mean more people on the property, more noise, and more rubbish. With many public holidays during this time, it is best to check your rubbish collection schedule with your local shire/council.

Incorrectly disposing of waste on common property may be in breach of the by-laws registered with your complex. A good way to reduce your waste is to determine what can be recycled, what can be thrown into the general waste and what can be taken to a “Containers for Change” recycling centre.

The email should contain the following;

  1. a brief description of what the complaint (ie. “It is alleged that…”)
  2. details of what the rubbish/chattels are
  3. where item/s have been left on common property
  4. a photo as evidence
  5. how they have breached the by-law (the appropriate Schedule 2 Compliance bylaw/s should be referenced)
  6. lastly, when the rubbish should be removed by

How to handle disputes at strata communities?

No one wants to be the Grinch, but if neighbouring lights are stopping you and your family from sleeping at night you may need to have a conversation with them. Being polite and offering a compromise may result in a better outcome (eg. lights off by 9pm, moving the party indoors after 9pm)

At ESM, we assist many Strata Companies with disputes between residents commonly arising over issues including unauthorised parking of vehicles on common property, general maintenance issues, unauthorised pets which are causing a nuisance, loud noise complaints (including construction noise), and other issues.

It is important to realise that the situation in most circumstances is not personal and that it is vital to have good communication with your neighbours. The best avenue can be to take a few minutes to sit down together at a mutual location and discuss both sides of the matter calmly and come to an amicable solution that would suit you both. Try to reach a resolution before the problem escalates into something it should not. If you believe an issue cannot be resolved in this manner, or if the issue persists, then you should write a formal complaint to the strata company, so that the Sstrata Company can assess and if need be attempt to rectify the issue.

The Strata Titles Act Schedule 2 Conduct by-laws are in place to help determine what behaviour is acceptable, and what isn’t. To minimise these issues, it is a requirement for each proprietor and resident to adhere to these by-laws. The elected Council of the Stata Company have a duty to manage these by-laws and the compliance of the residence. If you believe that a by-law is being breached, you should contact your Strata Manager or council member to discuss the matter further. If necessary, the Council of the Strata Company can send a letter to the party in breach, outlining the breach and seeking compliance with the relevant by-law(s). In most cases, the party in breach is not aware that the by-law existed or that they were in breach of it. If they continue to breach the by-law then the Council of the Strata Company can act to send a formal breach notice.

Some things can’t wait

If you are concerned about your or others’ safety, loud music, illegal activity, or parties occurring at the time of calling, please contact: • 000 for all emergencies • 131 444 to call WA Police

For more support visit our knowledgebase, here.

The team at ESM Strata wish you and your family a safe and happy festive season.