By The Paddocks Club Team

Below are examples of two questions on the Paddocks Club discussion forum. We want to show you what is available to our Community members!

Lack of Parking

Member’s question:

A building that was built some 65 years ago as a residential hotel and then sensationalized.  Way back then there was less requirements for parking than there is today, especially as we only have over 50’s in residence. Times have changed and more people have cars.

Based on today’s town planning  standards the parking is totally inadequate. e.g. we have 8 visitors bays where today’s regulations require 26.There are also not enough parking hays for owners/residents.

We now have an owner who knowingly purchased a section that had no parking facilities attached to it demanding that the Body Corporate provide her with parking. This is not physically possible without converting part of the garden to parking. The Conduct Rules allow the Trustees to give written approval for someone to use the common property. To try to alleviated their and other owners plight they have agree to allow the visitors bays to be used overnight.

This raised a number of questions:

1) can an owner demand that the Body Corporate has to provide them with parking.
2) If we had to change parts of the garden to parking would this be a luxurious of non luxurious improvement.

Graham’s answer:

You say the building was sensationalised in 1991… Wow, sectional title is having a more dramatic effect than I realised. 🙂

1) No, a person who buys into a scheme knowing they are acquiring no parking rights cannot demand that other owners (via the Body Corporate) give them parking rights.

If it was possible to create additional parking opportunities on the common property,  I think the Body Corporate would have a hard time justifying their allocation to the owner in question. The logical thing would be for it to sell them to the highest-bidding owner.

2) I think that it could be convincingly argued that the provision of parking is not a luxurious exercise but one based on a practical necessity.

Who pays to replace an outlet pipe?

Member’s question:

Hi Paddocks team please advise who would be responsible to replace an outlet pipe from the kitchen of a unit if it has rusted through and broken off on the outside of the unit.

Anton’s answer:

Owners are responsible to repair and maintain their sections and the body corporate has the same responsibility in respect of the common property. The median line of the walls, floor and ceiling that surround a section are the boundary between the section and the common  property.  So in the situation you describe, one’s first thought is that as the pipe broke outside the section, replacing it is the body corporate’s responsibility. That would be true if only the part of the pipe on common property were to be replaced, the part that broke off. But there’s little point in replacing only that part of the pipe. Aside from the likelihood of the join leaking into the wall and causing even more damage, the pipe is probably rusted inside the section  as well.

The whole of the pipe should be replaced, from the kitchen sink to where ever the pipe leads in the common property. The cost should be divided pro rata between the owner and the body corporate. Strictly, one should get the plumber to invoice for each part of the job and materials.

Article reference: Paddocks Press: Volume 10, Issue 2, Page 5.

Professor Graham Paddock, Anton Kelly and Carryn Durham are available to answer questions on the Paddocks Club discussion forum for Community members. Get all your questions answered by joining Paddocks Club.

This article is published under the Creative Commons Attribution license.

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