When you own a strata titled property, you and the other lot owners on the plot are responsible for paying for the upkeep and maintenance of common areas on the property, such as carparks, gardens, foyers and pools. These contributions are made in the form of strata levies.
Your regular contribution covers the costs required to keep the Strata Property in good condition. To determine how much each lot owner is required to pay, a unit entitlement will be assigned to each lot. The unit entitlement of a lot represents its value as a percentage of the property on a whole. Your individual unit entitlement will determine how much you contribute in levies.
Strata levies differ across different types of Strata Properties. Each building has its own set of attributes that will determine the size of the levy contribution. Survey Strata properties often attract lower strata levies, as there is less common property to be maintained. Properties with shared facilities such as pools, gyms, lifts and gardens will attract higher levies, as the costs associated with the upkeep of these spaces will be higher.
The value of levies can also fluctuate, depending on a variety of factors. Strata Managers do not set, or determine the levies, rather they are determined by the owners at the Annual General Meeting. The levies will often be loosely based on the budget for the following financial year, but often need to take other needs into consideration. The levies not only take into account gardening, cleaning, and general maintenance costs, but they also account for the Strata Company’s insurance, future projects and any unplanned or emergency works.
Each Strata Company will have a different method for collecting levies from the lot owners. Your Strata Company should have a clearly defined process for the collection and management of your Strata Levies. Your Strata Manager will be able to answer any questions relating to the payment of strata levies, and will be able to assist if you are unable to make payment due to an increase in your strata levy.