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Approvals and Renovations   Carrying out cosmetic works and minor renovations has become easier


Carrying out cosmetic works and minor renovations has become easier with the release of the new strata legislation in November 2016.

Owners from time to time may wish to undertake works, renovation or changes to their lot, and there is now a clear process to handle the different types of works being sought to be carried out.

Owners should always contact our office first in the event you are not sure of the approval process so we can direct and provide you advice. If approval is required and you subsequently carry out works, you could be liable for penalties including costs associated with rectifying the work and/or damages to the common property.

Seeking and being granted permission by the owners corporation will not be necessary for cosmetic works, while approval for minor renovations will now only require approval at a general meeting by general resolution (50% of votes). This will streamline the process and remove the red tape for these minor works.

Approval for major renovations will require approval of the owners corporation via a special resolution (75% or more in favour) as well as renovations and common property rights, which relates to the use of the common property such as a solar panel or air conditioning unit being attached to a common property wall.

Q: What is classified as cosmetic works?

Cosmetic works include:

  • Installing or replacing hooks, nails or screws

  • Installing or replacing handrails within your lot

  • Filling minor holes and cracks to internal walls

  • Painting

  • Laying carpet

  • Installing or replacing built in wardrobes

Q: What is classified as minor renovations?

Minor renovations include:

  • Renovating kitchen

  • Changing recess lighting

  • Installing wood and other hard floors

  • Installing or replacing wiring or cables or power or access points

  • Work involving configuring walls

What is classified as major renovations?

Major renovations include:

  • Removing structural walls

  • Enclosing a veranda

  • Removing waterproofing and re-tiling

  • Installing air-conditioner, satellite dish or similar on the roof or common property

  • Bathroom renovations

Owners must give written notice of proposed minor renovations to the owners corporation.

Q: I have a minor renovation to carry out. Can I start work and then seek approval?

No. Approval must firstly be granted by the owners at a general meeting. Bearing in mind the owners may decide for one reason or another not to grant approval.

Q: I want to install a satellite dish on the common property roof. Do I need a common property rights by-law?

Yes, you will need a common property rights by-law. You must put your proposal in writing first to the owners corporation and then a general meeting must be called along with the proposed installation and a common property rights by-law included.

The motion must be passed via a special resolution. It can take several months to have all information in order prior to the owners corporation calling the meeting.

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