Heartbroken self-managers need a hand in small strata


It wasn’t the work or even the legal liability that stopped Robert (name changed) from managing his own strata, it was the lies and broken promises from his fellow owners. As the kids say, he was just over it. And so ended another successful but very one-sided term of self-management of a red brick strata scheme.

The red brick blocks of Sydney are fairly simple things. Built to withstand a nuclear attack they are as strong as some might say plain. Usually they are six homes side by side on the ground with a shared driveway and minimal gardens. Sometimes they might have a floor or two above but hardly ever a lift. They also come in packs of two, four and ten.

At one point in the sixties or seventies Robert thought he was up for managing this themselves. It couldn’t be much harder than what he managed at work.  Have an annual meeting, strike a budget, collect the levies four times a year and pay the gardener every once and a while, more in summer. There was the insurance but a broker handled that.

Each year when the owners gathered there was a vote of thanks, never a gift of a bottle or two but there was that sense of satisfaction that came to a volunteer of a job well done that kept him coming back. But things changed.

Strata laws got more complex, councils got funny about fire safety, things needed replacing, owners wanted air conditioning and floating floor boards and people got ruder. The last straw; more changes to the strata laws. You see, more consumer protection comes at a price and our friend is sure he’s not going to be the only one to pay for it.

So this red brick block will now get a professional strata manager. There will be more paper and rules than before, and of course there’ll be the cost but it will be shared evenly and at least when our mate leaves someone will be left in charge.

A bottle of wine for Robert with the vote of thanks might have been the cheaper option but that’s the way of the world.

If you manage a small block and want to discuss options for full or partial management of your strata call Block Strata on (02) 9562 6500 now for a free no obligation inspection and management plan.

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