Are you planning to buy a unit in a strata property? Read on and discover some of the documents that you should examine critically before you sign your owners' corporation certificate. Fee Schedules It is important for you to examine the schedule of all the fees that are associated with the unit you want to buy. For example, are there any unpaid fees that you are expected to pay? Are there any special levies that have been introduced lately? This information will bring you up to speed with any immediate costs that you will be expected to shoulder as an owner in that owners' corporation.
Maintenance and Repair Records
It is also helpful for you to familiarise yourself with the repairs that have been executed or will be done to your unit and the common property. Those records will give you an idea about whether any of the concerns that you have about the unit have been included in the plans for improving that unit.
Assets and Liabilities
Pay close attention to the statement of the owners' corporation's assets and liabilities. Find out whether the maintenance fund can cover all the anticipated repairs to the common property for the coming years. Properly run owners' corporations usually have a maintenance fund that reflects a surplus once the cost of anticipated repairs is deducted.
You should also take a close look at any contracts, service agreements, leases or any other contractual documents pertaining to the owners of the units and the common property. Contracts define the relationships and expectations of all parties. For example, a service contract for the electrical system outlines who meets the cost of materials during repairs. Note down any aspects for which appropriate contracts aren't available.
Legal Proceedings and Notices
Owners' corporations are legal entities that can sue or be sued. Examine any legal proceedings or notices that are outstanding against the owners' corporation. Such documents can alert you to any possible costs that may have to be met once those legal issues aren't resolved in the favour of the owners' corporation.
Read the different insurance policies that were taken out against the strata property or the unit that you wish to purchase. Confirm the currency and amounts payable as premiums. This will help you to decide what additional insurance you may need during the time when you will own that unit. Use the information above to help you to come up with suggestions and recommendations that you can make at the next meeting of the owners' corporation in case you decide to buy the unit. After all, you have a role to play in making the strata property better for everyone concerned.