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Courtyard and Body Corp

Discussion in 'Real Estate' started by tailcat, 17th Apr, 2008.

  1. tailcat

    tailcat Well-Known Member

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    I have an IP unit that is under a body corp. It has an internal courtyard (Almost an oxymoron) with the fourth side of the courtyard being the brick wall of the adjoining unit.

    My question is, who is responsible for the maintenance of the courtyard? Is the courtyard internal to the walls of the unit?

    Is there a `guideline' anywhere or does it come down to the actual wording used in the body corp? I'm pretty certain that this is the only unit with a courtyard in the complex, so it may not even be mentioned in the body corp documentation.

    Tailcat
     
  2. Simon Hampel

    Simon Hampel Co-founder Staff Member

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    If the courtyard is not common property - that is, only the tenants in your unit can use it ... then I'd guess it would be your responsibility.

    Any issues such as plumbing and electricity may be body corp issues if it relates to the supply of those services ... but general upkeep I imagine would be your issue.

    I'm certainly not an expert - I'm only going by my personal experiences as a tenant in unit blocks.
     
  3. Jacque

    Jacque Team InvestEd

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    Hi Tailcat

    Sim is right - if the courtyard is yours on title then it's your responsibility. If not, and it's for the usage of all unit owners then it's classed as common property and the OC is responsible for it's upkeep.
     
  4. tailcat

    tailcat Well-Known Member

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    Jacque,

    Thanks for the reply.

    However, it then begs the question, where does the courtyard stop and say the roof begin? Are gutters part of the roof or the courtyard? Downpipes?

    Whoops! In thinking about this reply, I suddenly thought that I have not explained how the courtyard is set up sufficiently well. Attached is a simple schematic of the layout.

    Tailcat
     

    Attached Files:

  5. Simon Hampel

    Simon Hampel Co-founder Staff Member

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    I would generally assume that roofing and guttering (including downpipes) is part of the building structure and not part of your apartment - thus a body corporate responsibility?

    I don't see how the courtyard would make this any different?

    Is there an actual dispute or issue that has caused you to ask this question ?
     
  6. tailcat

    tailcat Well-Known Member

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    Sim,

    There is no dispute.

    I was chatting with my property manager, (yes they are that good, they even make coffee and biscuits for the tenant every week when they come in to pay the rent.....) about several points including:

    1) the wall of the other unit is painted white. I was wondering if it needed repainting, and if so who would do it?

    2) there was a recent cloud burst (225ml in 1 hour) very close by (nothing at the unit, 3kms away), I was wondering who was responsible for the drains, guttering etc. in the courtyard, to ensure that no flooding resulted.

    When the body corp gets someone to inspect the `outside' of all the units, do they actually tell them about the courtyard. Presumably they would have to give 24 hours notice to `enter' the unit.

    I get on very well with the BC. I just want to get a feel of things before approaching them. They have a very professional attitude, but are actually only owner-occupiers.

    Tailcat
     
  7. Jacque

    Jacque Team InvestEd

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  8. lura

    lura Active Member

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    Strata issues

    Hi all,

    All roofs are the responsibility of the BC because it has the potential to affect multiple units. The gutterings form part of the roof structure and also has the potential to adversely affect more than one unit - therefore, the responsibility of BC.

    The wall that is painted white, that forms the wall of the other unit as well as your courtyard: the test you would use is - if you have private and exclusive use of this wall i.e it cannot be seen by anyone else - then you can paint and decorate it as you wish so long as any decorations you carry out do not affect the structure of the wall e.g growing invasive vines will be a no no because it has the potential to compromise the stability of mortar over time. But if you fancied aubergine as a colour to match your plants etc - you should be able to do this. Also, no part of the wall must be visible to anyone from a common area - if it is - you must not paint or decorate it without written approval from BC.

    Even if you repaint the wall the same colour and it is visible to anyone from a common area - some BC get iffy about this because all of a sudden your will look "fresh" and others still drab - this could offend as much as a completely different colour. So be careful.

    Body Corp will communicate with your property managers if they need access to the unit for any inspections that form part of maintenance - if so, relevant notice periods will apply. They may not necessarily need internal access to the unit so if they do the right thing - they will let your property managers know that someone will be on the roof and your property managers pass this information onto the tenants so they are aware.

    These generally are matters your property managers will liaise with BC on and unless it involves your authority - you can just let your property managers do their job. They will be able to tell you what I have said above - and they would be more aware in relation to your particular property because they look after it.
     
  9. Jacque

    Jacque Team InvestEd

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    Hi Lura

    You certainly sound like you've got a lot of experience in PM matters. Are you a Brissy based PM yourself?
     
  10. lura

    lura Active Member

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    Hi Jacque,

    I am first and foremost a property enthusiast - this was what steered me into the real estate field many years ago.

    I am currently a stay at home mum - taking some time out to look after my 11month old. So this is a little bit of down time for me, found this site and quite happy to share my knowledge.

    I've also done sales - new house and land, existing homes throughout SE Qld. Was a Business Dev. Mgr/Acquisitions Mgr for an investment company - so experienced in assessing growth areas and steering clients to high growth investments in SEQ. I have extensive knowledge of the PAMD and Residential Tenancies Act - utilised this years ago as a PM. Background in building and consulting to food businesses (in sydney - I am formerly from NSW) - so I treat assessing properties like I do for businesses - because it is. I am also an investor with properties in Brisbane. And I have interior design training - beneficial when sourcing properties (especially to fluff and flog). Doing some developing on one of my own properties at moment.

    I am a LREA and a member of REIQ.
     
  11. Jacque

    Jacque Team InvestEd

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    Well great to have you aboard, Lura, and for sharing your knowledge.
    Look forward to more contributions from you :)

    When did you decide to do the interior designing as well?
     
  12. lura

    lura Active Member

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    Hi Jacues,

    I did interior design 5 years ago. It was always intended to compliment the property side - and has been financially rewarding for myself and for clients - from colour selections to design layouts and more. Being in real estate, I know first hand what buyers look for and what tenants look for.

    Lu