A committee member from NSW is wondering whether their building can adopt a generic renovation bylaw for major works such as the renovations of bathrooms. Leanne Habib, Premium Strata provides the following response.
Question: Is it possible to have a generic renovation bylaw for major works set up by the Committee so that everyone can use it without having to go to the trouble and the cost of setting up their own?
Being a member of a Strata Committee where I live I have been asked to look into some things regarding By-Laws for Major Works.
We have at least three owners of Units wanting to renovate their bathrooms, and they, therefore, need to have a Special Resolution and By-Law passed.
- Is it possible to have a Blanket / Generic Renovation ByLaw for Major Works set up by the Committee so that everyone can use it without having to go to the trouble and the cost of setting up their own?
- I assume the renovation bylaw would have to be registered.
- What would the procedure be for each Unit Owner to take once they have the Generic Bylaw?
- Do they then follow the same steps as before: Present the renovation bylaw, Plans and Details to the Strata Manager and wait till it is passed at a General or Extra Ordinary Meeting?
- Does it have to be registered again with their signature on it, therefore, taking the responsibility hereafter for the waterproofing and work carried out in their unit.
Answer: Yes this is possible. You pass a “management bylaw” which sets up the guidelines for major works
We have addressed each question below:
- Yes this is possible. You pass a “management bylaw” which sets up the guidelines for major works eg “Major Renovations” means works that:
- involve structural changes;
- change the external appearance of a Lot;
- detrimentally affect the safety of a Lot or common property including fire safety systems;
- involve waterproofing or plumbing or exhaust system(s); and/or
- are on the common property, for clarity, works that add to, alter or erect a structure on the common property, as are more particularly described in the Scope of Works.
- This bylaw is then registered. Then an owner wanting to carry out the works provides the Scope of Works to the strata committee, agrees to comply with the generic by-law and a one-line by-law stating the relevant lot owner’s lot number and specific scope of works is then registered (and the lot owner agrees that the provisions of the generic by-law are adopted or incorporated into the short by-law).
Alternatively, we have seen blanket authorisation bylaws (granting common property rights) for each and every lot providing strict guidelines are met (with only the generic bylaw being registered and no subsequent bylaws being registered in respect of any particular lot).
- As per the above
- Correct. We prefer the management bylaw approach so that all plans/details etc are registered on the title for a specific lot owner. This will avoid doubt in the future as to what scope of works were carried out .
- It depends on which approach you prefer. The former blanket bylaw approach you would require a short bylaw to be registered in addition to the generic one. If you adopt the alternative course, no.
This post appears in Strata News #172.
- NSW Strata Reforms: Cosmetic & Minor Renovations – what can & can’t you do?
- NSW: Q&A Are there template renovation bylaws available?
This article is not intended to be personal advice and you should not rely on it as a substitute for any form of advice.