Strata Legislation 2024 updates – FAQ

Strata Renewal

Question: What is a “Strata Renewal”?

ANSWER: “Strata Renewal” refers to repurposing a piece of land for redevelopment. For instance, when an existing strata scheme undergoes a “strata renewal” process, it essentially involves winding up the scheme to make way for new residential units.

In New South Wales (NSW), Australia, strata renewal follows a specific legal process outlined in the Strata Schemes Development Act 2015. The primary purpose of this legislation is to facilitate the redevelopment or renewal of aging strata-titled properties to meet modern standards and community needs.

Question: Does not every owner / strata committee member have a pecuniary interest in the outcome of a Strata renewal process.

ANSWER: Yes, the declaration requirements pertain to individuals with a distinct interest apart from being a lot owner in a strata scheme. If the interest is a shared interest among all lot owners, there is no need for declaration.

Self Managed

Question: If a landlord self-manages (ie: does not use an Agent) I assume the landlord must provide information. Is this correct?

Answer: Section 258 states that a tenancy notice must be given to the owners corporation. If an owner self-manages, they are required to adhere to the Act’s provisions and obligations as if they were a property manager. Even if you self-manage your property, it is essential to ensure compliance with the Strata Schemes Management Act. If you have any doubts, please stay in touch with your Strata Manager who will be happy to help.


Question: Does this apply to ONLY Asssitance Animals or is it all pets?

Answer: In this case, the amendment to legislation applies to all pets, ensuring their well-being and protection under the law. This change aims to create a more inclusive and compassionate society where all animals are valued and cared for. It signifies a step towards recognising the importance of animals in our lives and the need to provide them with the care and respect they deserve. By extending these legal protections to all pets, we are taking a significant stride towards building a more harmonious and understanding relationship between humans and animals.

Question: So, what protections do OC’s have now in regards to damage and noise from pets?

Answer:  The same protections they would have if the damage and/or noise is created by residents. In situations where damage and noise are caused by residents, it is essential for everyone in the community to understand that the same protections should apply regardless of who is responsible. By upholding consistency in these standards, we promote a fair and harmonious environment for all individuals involved. Encouraging mutual respect and accountability can lead to a more peaceful and cooperative community where everyone’s well-being is valued and protected. Remember, treating others with consideration and understanding goes a long way in fostering positive relationships and a sense of unity among neighbours.

Question: Is this regulation limited by the number of pets allowed?

Answer: Good question. In situations where there is uncertainty or lack of specific information, the concept of reasonableness often plays a crucial role. When considering various factors and perspectives, the idea of reasonableness helps in making sound judgments and decisions. It involves thinking critically, weighing different possibilities, and acting in a way that aligns with logic and fairness. Therefore, even in the absence of a definitive answer, applying reasonableness can guide us towards thoughtful and just outcomes.

Question: Does this new legislation cover visitors that want to bring their animals to the strata building?

Answer:  Visitor behaviour is a key aspect that many by-laws address to ensure the safety and well-being of everyone in a particular area. In the case mentioned, regulations regarding visitor behaviour would likely cover the specific situation in question. By-laws often outline guidelines for appropriate conduct, noise levels, parking restrictions, and any other actions such as pets for owners and occupiers that may impact the community.

It is essential for owners to ensure their visitors are aware of these requirements and adhere to these by-laws to maintain harmony and respect within the area. By promoting responsible behaviour, these by-laws contribute to creating a welcoming environment for all.

Question: how many pets can an owner have for 1 lot.

Answer:  Legislation is silent on this. One would assume a test of “reasonableness” would apply.

When legislation does not specifically address a situation, it often falls to the principle of reasonableness to guide decisions and the schemes by-laws.

Question: Can you give an example of what kind of existing common by-laws are likely to be impacted by the requirement to adhere to the Act? e.g. does this affect exclusive use by-laws?

Answer:  Thank you. The most obvious one that comes to mind would be “pet by-laws” that are restrictive / prohibit the keeping of animals altogether.

Question: Can a unit block have a by law restricting all pets?

Answer: A building may have a by-law that prohibits all pets. The recent legislation allows for successful challenges to such by-laws, effectively rendering them void.


Question: Can the chair of SC or OC raise with the person that they have a conflict?

Answer: No. The declaration of a conflict/pecuniary interest, is a self-reporting obligation.

When it comes to conflicts of interest or pecuniary interests, honesty and transparency are key. As individuals involved in various fields and industries, it is crucial to acknowledge and disclose any potential conflicts that may arise. By doing so, we uphold the principles of integrity and trustworthiness. Remember, it is not a sign of weakness to declare a conflict of interest; rather, it demonstrates a commitment to ethical conduct and ensures that decisions are made with fairness and objectivity. So, let us embrace the responsibility of self-reporting any conflicts of interest, as it is a fundamental step towards maintaining credibility and upholding professional standards.

Question: what if the conflict of a member is clearly obvious from the documents being discussed at the relevant committee meeting and where the member does not voluntarily put on the record the obvious conflict?

Answer: Then one would expect the balance of the strata committee to vote accordingly. The legislation provides for declarations of conflict to be dealt with in a self-reporting manner.

Members of the strata committee should act with integrity and transparency when it comes to voting on important matters. It is crucial that any conflicts of interest are disclosed promptly and managed appropriately. By self-reporting conflicts, the committee can uphold fairness and ensure decisions are made in the best interest of all residents. This not only fosters trust within the community but also upholds the principles of good governance within the strata setting. By following these guidelines diligently, the committee can maintain credibility and work towards a harmonious living environment for all.

Question: If an owner sends abusive communications to the Strata Manager are those records kept under the new scheme electronically?

Answer: Yes.

Question: If landlord, agent, tenant do not provide notice to terminate what recourse does the committee/OC have?

Answer:  The Strata Committee / Owners Corporation can consider an application with the NSW Civil & Administrative Tribunal (NCAT). One would hope that non-compliance with the requirement could be more efficiently resolved with direct communication between the parties.

Question: We have a chair who just rules motions out of order.  He refuses to give any reason.  I know the Act and they do not breach the Act.  I quote the relevant section of the Act.  No point in going to NCAT – or is there?  If so what orders woudl i seek.

Answer: The first step we would suggest is to outline your position to your strata manager. They can assist in clarifying their understanding of legislation/the issue at handand ensure that the reason for the motion being ruled out of order is detailed and minuted.

The legislation provides that the chairperson at a meeting may rule a motion out of order if;

(a) the chairperson considers that the motion, if carried, would conflict with this Act or the by-laws of the scheme or would otherwise be unlawful or unenforceable, or

(b) any requirement of this Act to include the form of the motion in the notice of the meeting has not been complied with.

AGMs, Notices & Record Keeping

Question: What requirements are there for how the notice is given?   I was told it is ok to only have a piece of paper on a noticeboard at the property?

Answer:  Notice requirements vary depending on the type of meeting and size of building. For example, in a strata scheme that is less than 100 primary lots, the requirement for notice of a strata committee meeting is to place a copy of the notice on the notice board at least 72 hours before the meeting. For a strata scheme 100 lots or more, the notice must be sent to all lot owners with at least 3 days’ notice. All general meetings require notice to be given 7 (for general meetings) or 14 (for Annual General Meetings) clear days before the meeting.

When it comes to ensuring that meetings run smoothly within a strata scheme, understanding the specific notice requirements is key. These requirements can vary depending on the type of meeting and the size of the building. For instance, in a strata scheme with fewer than 100 primary lots, the protocol for a strata committee meeting involves posting a copy of the notice on the notice board at least 3 days prior to the meeting not including. On the other hand, for a strata scheme comprising 100 lots or more, the notice should be sent to all lot owners with a minimum of 3 days notice.

Furthermore, for general meetings, it is essential to provide notice either 7 days in advance for regular meetings or 14 days beforehand for Annual General Meetings. This allows all stakeholders to prepare adequately and participate meaningfully in the decision-making process. By adhering to these notice requirements, the strata community can promote transparency, efficiency, and collaboration in their meetings.

Question: Is there a financial limit associated with the 14 Days time frame? EG per lot limit up to a set $ value?

Answer: No.

Question: What are the consequences when a strata notices are electronic and a lot owner does not have an email address?

Answer: The particular entity would need to accommodate non-electronic service of notices for the lot owner.


Question: Have there been any legislative changes that affect the use of capital reserve funds for unexpected works or the transfer of funds between admin and capital reserves? I had heard that unexpected capital works should now be paid out of admin reserves, which seems strange. Thanks

Answer: Indeed, there have been modifications concerning fund transfers between administrative and capital funds. Previously, transfers necessitated repayment to the fund within 3 months. With the new legislation, owners can now vote on waiving the repayment of transferred funds.

Question: If committee members cannot vote on matters in which they have a financial interest, how does this work with committee members voting on budgets and annual strata levies (which they are clearly interested in as they pay those levies)?

Answer: A declaration of pecuniary interests would be necessary if the “interest” extended beyond the scope of being a lot owner or committee member.

Question: Was there a change in relation to the length of the term of a strata committee?

Answer: No.

Question: Is the number of possible committee members increasing from 9 to 14? What is panels view?

Answer:  For owners corporations, no.

Under the Community Land Management Act, the number has been increased to be up to 15 members for association committees with over 3 members. As 1 of three panelists, I can only say that this change is assumed to cover off on Community Associations/Neighbourhood associations with a very large number of members e.g. a site with 100s of different entities. My view is that 9 was likely enough and that this change was in response to outlier sites with a large number of members.

Health and Safety

Question: Who determines what a health or safety issue is? Example – owner claims water pooling in the garage is a slip/safety issue when walking to car however committee does not deem this to be a safety issue and therefore delays repairs.

Answer: This decision would be made by the owners corporation when formulating the motion up for vote. Any innovative ideas regarding health and safety status can be contested at the NSW Civil & Administrative Tribunal. It is likely that case law will develop in this area.


Question: Do tenants have a right to vote?

Answer:  Not in meetings of the owners corporation or its strata committee.

Question: If a new lease (eg 1 year) is issued to a current tenant, does that require the agent to give notice?

Answer: Yes, it is a requirement pursuant to section 258 of the Strata Schemes Management Act 2015

Question: Whilst the tenant receives a copy of the by-laws, is there an explicit requirement to follow the by-laws and hence enforce breaches?

Answer: All residents and lot owners and occupiers must comply with the schemes by-laws. Any reported violations must be addressed through the NSW Civil & Administrative Tribunal (NCAT) for enforcement or in consultation with your Strata Manager determine that a Notice to Comply be issued


Question: Re the two independent quotes over $30000 how does this work if it is water remediation work under the design practitioners act with different issues and the cause of the issues being unclear across multiple units within a property? Every designer/tradesperson has a different opinion and/or want to do their own investigation so it is becoming very difficult to get like-for-like quotes.

Answer: Our recommendation is to address complex issues through a specific scope that is tendered out. All tenders should follow the scope outlined by the design professional.

Common property

Question: If an owner obtained a privilege such as an attachment to common property that did not require a bylaw when granted still not require a bylaw under present legislation

Answer: The correct/complete way a privilege, conferring common property rights from the owners corporation, to a lot owner is via a by-law. It is noted that special resolutions can be passed to allow for alterations to common property and that such a motion can be progressed without a by-law.


Question: Do these rules also apply to Commercial Strata Plans

Answer:  Yes.

Question: is it 75% of units or 75% by unit entitlement?

Answer: By unit entitlement the determination of decisions in a meeting often relies on the unit entitlement of the votes cast by the attendees. Unit entitlement represents the proportional ownership interest each individual holds within the group. This method ensures that each member’s voice is heard and considered in the decision-making process. By taking into account the unit entitlement of the votes, the meeting can reach fair and equitable outcomes that reflect the collective interests of all participants.

Question: Adrian, you mentioned developers buying into  building and then objecting to a development to advance their own desires and they possibility being ordered to  bear their own costs or paying the costs of the 75%. What about an owner/objector who simply and genuinely does not want to be part of a collective cale or redevelopment; would they be at risk of paying their own costs or paying the costs of the 75%?

Answer:  The risk would only materialise if their “dissenting view” is deemed to be “unreasonable” or “in bad faith”.

In such cases, it becomes crucial for individuals to express their differing opinions respectfully and constructively. By engaging in open and honest dialogue, it is possible to navigate potential conflicts without the need for accusations of bad faith or unreasonableness. Encouraging a culture of active listening and mutual understanding can help bridge gaps in viewpoints and lead to more inclusive and productive discussions.

Remember, diversity of thought is a valuable asset that can foster innovation and progress when managed with respect and empathy.

Question: When did this ruling came into effect?

Answer:  No need to apologise and thank you for your question! Changes came into effect 11 December 2023.

Question: further changes are coming and a Strata Commissioner has been appointed. How do views of Strats Owners feed into the conversation?

Answer:  The government typically invites input from those impacted as part of their consultation process.

Question: If more changes are coming why would we review all the bylaws, costly exercise, instead of waiting to see the further changes?

Answer: Staying up to date with the ever-evolving legal landscape is essential for maintaining a well-managed strata scheme. Regularly reviewing and adjusting by-laws to ensure they align with current legislation is not only a proactive approach but also a crucial aspect of effective governance. Embracing legislative changes as a continuous process rather than a one-time task is key to ensuring that the by-laws remain relevant and compliant. By engaging in this ongoing “house-keeping” exercise, owners corporations and Community Association can navigate legal complexities with confidence and adapt to regulatory changes seamlessly.

Question: How are these legislation changes expected to be Governed. Who is responsible and accountable in regards to this?

Answer: The owners corporation holds responsibility and accountability in adhering to legislation. When it comes to governance, Strata Committees and Owners Corporations can seek guidance from their professional strata managing agent to ensure compliance with the law. Any allegations of non-compliance with legislation would be addressed by the NSW Civil & Administrative Tribunal (NCAT) through a tribunal hearing initiated by the applicant.