Maintenance schedules will be strata managers’ burdens to bear

Show Me the Money

When it comes to settlement of a new block the developers focus could not be more narrow: to borrow from Jerry Maguire, “Show me the money!”.

At this time when the developers construction loan facility is fully drawn and every days’ delay is equal to the yearly cost of educating a child at a Sydney private school, tempers fray and attention to detail is wanting.

This is precisely when the strata manager starts asking pesky detailed questions about what is it that the owners corporation owns and manages. Like a millennial avoiding commitment, a developer will deflect these requests. All too often the strata manager gives up and the owners corporation never gets the key information it will need in the months and years ahead to maintain and repair its buildings.

Our law makers have twigged to this and have created a thing called an initial maintenance schedule. Developers will need to list the competent parts of the building in great detail, attach warranties, service manuals, and the names, addresses, and contact details of manufacturers and installers. Developers must provide a schedule for the inspection of the 24 items listed in the legislation, down to details about the asphalt and guttering.

With the possible exception of one or two big brand name developers who take handovers seriously, the task of compiling the initial maintenance schedule will come down to the strata manager, or it won’t get done. That’s just the way these things work.

Buildings now under construction and to be completed after 30 November 2016 will require an initial maintenance schedule. My tip – there will never be a better time to get working on this than now.

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