Colliers International says the new Strata Titles Amendment Act will provide a better legal framework for strata managers and for the growing number of people and businesses who own or lease strata properties in WA.
“Strata is becoming an increasingly popular land title and the changes will allow the Act to set higher standards for the industry and to catch up with consumer expectations,” Colliers International Director, Business Services Ali Qamar said.
“This will become increasingly important as WA’s population grows and more people want to live and work in high-amenity areas where strata properties are most common.”
Described by Landgate as the most important update to WA’s strata system for more than 20 years, the Strata Titles Amendment Act 2018 will apply to apartments, townhouses and units as well as retail, commercial and industrial properties.
Mr Qamar said the reforms would lift industry standards by imposing legal duties on strata managers which could be enforced by strata companies.
“This will provide a far greater level of consumer protection and require people who manage strata schemes to do so in a more accountable and transparent way,” he said.
“The reforms stipulate minimum education requirements and a working knowledge of the Act, higher accounting standards, including the use of a trust account to hold a strata company’s funds and professional indemnity insurance to cover any loss arising from any act or omission of the strata manager.”
Mr Qamar said the reforms were already in place at Colliers International’s portfolio of apartment and commercial buildings and as they were adopted by other managers, strata expertise and service would improve.
“With more than 300,000 strata properties in WA it’s crucial that owners and tenants of strata properties have confidence in strata schemes and their managers,” he said.
“Unfortunately, the new reforms stopped short of introducing licensing for strata managers, which would have accelerated management standards while also formalising career paths for this high-growth industry.”
Landgate’s community consultation on the new regulations closed today and the Strata Titles Amendment Act (General) Regulations 2019 is expected to be finalised and delivered to Parliament in November.