Michael Teys joins me for a “grown-up conversation” about extraordinary new laws destined to commence in NSW, which will finally hold owners corporations to account for their failure to comply with repair and maintenance duties. We cover:

  • low strata levies as a sign of poor governance,
  • why strata property owners need to take a good hard look at themselves as corporate citizens with unavoidable legal duties,
  • why Michael is tired of hearing that committee members are volunteers,
  • the need to cut the ‘weasel speak’ from the strata industry and start some plain talking,

and so much more.

Links mentioned:


4 Responses

  1. At one point there is talk of going to NCAT and the comment that flows freely is ‘get a lawyer”. Later in the podcast Amanda talks about representing people looking to deal with s 106 (repair) matters and numbers in the order of ten of thousands of dollars are thrown around to do this. I hate to keep saying it but the objective of NCAT, found at 3(d) of the CAT Act, “to enable the Tribunal to resolve the real issues in proceedings justly, quickly, cheaply and with as little formality as possible ….” is questionable

    Sorry i am mistaken; it is not questionable it is just rubbish yet we do not talk about it.
    Adversarial system = epic fail.

    In the podcast we see Michael finds it refreshing to be able to speak freely and I conclude from that he feels a sense of freedom finally being able to say things that he couldn’t when ‘owned’ by the overlords of the legal system who require one not speak ill of the legal profession, or system, or State so as to maintain the facade of public confidence in a system riddled with noise that is more than worthy of disdain.
    Yes; NCAT are pretty poor on strata. There are lots who know this and few (who need to be saying it) who will say it. Try telling those responsible for NCAT the system is broken and enjoy the PR rhetoric you get as a reply. It is pathetic how these ‘adults’ behaviour. Who votes for these people; if this is the product of democracy then democracy is not fit for purpose.

    I always find the education rhetoric quite amusing given there is no compulsory education at any point in anyone’s life in relation to the rule of law, the Westminster system, democracy, or what ever other label you care to put to it yet every person lives, every day, under ‘the system’. The plebs are kept oblivious for a reason and I am not disappearing down some conspiracy hole. The plebs are required to be plebs and do not need to know how it all works. They just need to be functional plebs.

    Not only is the lack of any compulsory education in the ways of the system absent from our lives but if one is to be truly objective about it then considering what is in a strata managers training and what are the requirements (bahahahaha) of the agent under the wish list that is the Rules for all Agents found in the drivel that is the PSA Regulations then of course people, agents or plebs, are not interested in engaging in the years and years of necessary work to get to the point of having a working knowledge of strata law. Too busy participating in a society whose machinations they know little to nothing about.

    Most strata professionals, professional being a deceptive term to be applying to most agents, do not have a working knowledge of the Act. They operate a business and that can occur with rather limited strata knowledge. To have a working knowledge would, I suggest, involve being across a decent swag of case law because what the Parliament want, what the Act says and what the Courts say it all means are all very different on too many occasions for a brief perusal of the Act to be enough to gain a working knowledge.

    To cut to the chase, there has been continuing incremental decline in quality of many, many, areas of strata for many, many, years. From building construction to the over seeing judiciary. Things have decline to the point where there is no incremental way back, someone needs to go hard on it and that is what we are seeing.
    The new legislation reflects a quantum shift, not incremental garbage that we typically see.
    It is time to kick some ass because that is what the system does when the plebs get recalcitrant and unruly.

  2. Very interesting but I would dispute that owners should be financially liable for building defects from scum builders and developers that refuse to meet their responsibilities!

  3. Hi Michael

    Very well commented: It’s causing too many people to have to go to lawyers and spend too much money and too much time for a pretty weak result at the end where you might get an order, you might not, depending upon whether the person at the tribunal knows what a pipe is or not.
    The quality of tribunal decisions, particularly in the jurisdictions that don’t have dedicated strata lists is pretty poor.

    Could not agree more with you, thank you

  4. The problem is that the NSW Government is treating Housing as places to make money instead of providing Healthy Homes.
    Please listen to the Great podcast on the ABC, The Birdman of Surry Hills where the State Government that it should be providing healthy Homes is not doing it so the taxpayers are wasting Money on experts and Lawyers instead of using the money to repair the buildings.
    I paid a great amount of Strata levies and previously special levies to pay for unnecessary work or shonky work $5,250.00 a year. So I believe the big levies are not the answer but us having people to help us in the present Nightmare Called Strata Living.
    In our building the special levy or its use to do repairs not needed or if the work is not done properly. My Home is on a Strata Scheme of 4 Lots where as you know the government changed the law to be able to force residents to sell to a developer.
    Hope Mr Chandler leaves a good Legacy.

    Thanks Amanda for the information!!

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