A strata scheme refers to multiple unit properties that have multiple owners. They are all joint owners and therefore have the responsibility to manage and maintain the scheme. The owners are joined in a legal entity called the owners’ corporation and this is governed by legislation.
A strata plan or scheme represents the common areas and the lots. This should have at least one building facility. You can find strata schemes in residential complexes, retirement villages, commercial buildings, industrial complexes etc. When you buy into a strata scheme, you will own an individual lot. But this also means you are responsible for the upkeep of shared or common areas of the building. You can discuss about your strata plan and its responsibilities with the strata manager. Owning a strata is a little different from owning a house because you will not own the external areas. This includes the roof, external walls and floors. This is why these areas are classed as common areas and added to the overall responsibility of all the owners. Only the owners make up the body corporate or the owners’ association.
There are slight differences in the responsibilities of a property manager and a strata manager. A strata manager will manage each strata scheme and will be responsible for the administration and finances of the scheme. They will also be responsible for the maintenance of the common areas along with the social roles related to the strata scheme. However, a property manager will manage individual strata properties of the owners ensuring that the tenants pay rent and maintain the property in good condition. The strata title involves the ownership of the lots and common property. Common property can be gardens, driveways, stairwells, corridors etc. The strata title specifies the responsibilities of all parties involved in the scheme. It also sets out the rights of the parties and ensures that they are protected under the law. The strata title will be legal proof of your ownership of the building.
Legislation for strata schemes is constantly evolving with the industry. And when you are an owner, it can be a little difficult to follow changes to legislation as well as be thoroughly informed about the rules and regulations that pertain to the schemes. Strata management companies therefore provide the essential service of deciphering legal jargon and ensuring that everyone involves understands the rules that relate to the management of the scheme. Any property that is owned with a strata title is called a strata titled property and this can be one or more buildings owners by the owners’ corporation. The owners and occupants of the strata scheme have to abide by the by-laws that relate to it. There are certain restrictions that both owners and residents have to comply with such as keeping pets, noise and storing bulky items. There will be many meetings held by the lot owners to vote on important issues. The records of these meetings will be kept and distributed by the strata management company.