Previous owners illegal renos

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Forums Repairs and maintenance Previous owners illegal renos

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  • #390770

    Hello Amanda et al

    Have discovered the previous owner did illegal balcony renovations, no waterproofing certificate, no permission etc.

    As i understand, i think that responsibility now passes to me.

    Except – the previous  owner still owns in the building and is very loud and proactive, especially if anyone else should come within a hair’s breath of breaching a by-law or a policy.

    My Qs: Can i put a motion that a breach of by-law notice be issued to Mr A? Can i request that he make good?  Contribute to make good?  The balcony will need repairing very soon, probably due to his shoddy renos – is that still the OC’s responsibility?  The previous owner?  Or me?

    with thanks Miss


    Amanda Farmer

    Hi Miss,

    Very interesting scenario.

    Where the former owner of your lot is still an owner in the building, in my view yes, he can still be pursued for this past breach of the by-laws (subject to their precise wording…) and legislation.

    In relation to the legislation, see section 111 in the SSMA 2015:


    An owner of a lot in a strata scheme must not carry out work on the common property unless the owner is authorised to do so–

    (a) under this Part, or

    (b) under a by-law made under this Part or a common property rights by-law, or

    (c) by an approval of the owners corporation given by special resolution or in any other manner authorised by the by-laws.

    To be pursued for breach of this section, the owner just has to be “an owner of a lot”, not necessarily the owner of the lot where the work impacting the common property was carried out.

    Clever. I’d love to know how it plays out.

    In my view, until this is sorted out, the Owners Corporation retains responsibility for the common property impacted by this illegal work. So, the Owners Corporation should be the one bringing the application for rectification. That application can be made under section 132, which also permits a specified amount to be paid, in place of the work being done.

    Owners corporations try to pin this type of responsibility on subsequent owners when there is no evidence of when the work was carried out, so the OC can take the position that it’s as likely to be the current owner as any previous owner. In your case, it sounds like you have evidence that it was the former owner and this person can be pursued because they are still an owner in the building. If the Owners Corporation refuses to act on it this, then they are accepting responsibility for the impacted common property.


    Dee (NSW)

    WoW how interesting! And great question & answer.


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