In this chapter we explain the articles, the default set, enforcement, and amending.
Articles are the rules of the strata corporation. Each strata corporation has its own articles. The articles bind the unit holders, tenants and the strata corporation to an agreement regarding the use and upkeep of units and common property. While legal obligations under the Strata Titles Act cannot be avoided or changed, the articles are determined by the strata corporation itself.
Schedule 3 of the Strata Titles Act sets out the articles for all strata corporations, (go to full set) however if a particular strata corporation wishes to adopt its own articles, or amend any number of its articles it can do so.
Articles can be quite prescriptive, some common provisions compel the owner or occupier to:
- keep the unit in a clean and tidy condition.
- not interfere with lawns, gardens etc. on the common property.
- not display signs without consent.
- not keep animals in or about the unit without consent.
- notify the corporation of changes in ownership or occupier.
- use the common property reasonably.
25. The functions of the strata corporation are as follows:
(c) to enforce the articles of the corporation.
What does this mean?
The strata corporation has an obligation to enforce the Articles when it is aware that a resident, visitor or owner are in breach.
The Corporation and its officers need to ensure they have evidence of a breach before warning or ‘breaching’ the owner or resident. Examples are:
- a signed diary by affected residents
- officers sighting the problem
In the case of tenants call the owner or their agent rather than the tenant. It is up to the owner or their agent to deal with their tenant or their visitors.
How to Change the Articles of a Strata Corporation: Articles of a strata corporation can be changed by a special resolution of its members, but any change must be lodged with the Registrar General at the Lands Titles Office to be effective and legal. We suggest your group seek the advice of a licenced conveyancer or lawyer.
19. (1) Subject to this section, the articles of a strata corporation will be as set out in schedule 3. (2) A strata corporation may by special resolution – (a) adopt articles in substitution for those set out in schedule 3; or (b) revoke or vary articles previously so adopted. (3) A resolution under subsection (2) has no effect until a copy of the resolution certified in the prescribed manner and accompanied (where appropriate) by the substituted articles, or the variation to the articles, is lodged with the Registrar General.
ARTICLES OF STRATA CORPORATION (print)
(Strata Titles Act, 1988 – Schedule 3)
1. A Unit holder must:
(a) maintain the Unit in good repair;
(b) carry out any work ordered by a Council or other Public Authority in respect of the Unit.
(2) The occupier of a Unit must keep it in a clean and tidy condition.
2. A person bound by these Articles:
(a) must not obstruct the lawful use of the Common Property by any person;
(b) must not use the Common Property in a manner that unreasonably interferes with the use and enjoyment of the Common Property by the other members of the strata community, their customers, clients or visitors;
(c) must not make, or allow his or her customers, clients or visitors to make undue noise in or about any Unit or the Common Property AND
(d) must not interfere, or allow his or her customers clients or visitors to interfere with others in the enjoyment their rights in relation to Units or Common Property.
3. A person bound by these Articles must not use the Unit, or permit the Unit to be used, for any unlawful purpose.
4. Subject to the Strata Titles Act, 1988, a person bound by these Articles must not, without the Strata Corporation’s consent, keep any animal in, or in the vicinity of, a Unit.
5. A person bound by these Articles:
(a) must not park a motor vehicle in a parking space allocated for others or on a part of the Common Property on which is not authorised by the Strata Corporation; AND
(b) must take reasonable steps to ensure that his or her customers, clients or visitors do not park in parking spaces allocated for others or on parts of the Common Property on which parking is not authorised by the Strata Corporation.
6. A person bound by these Articles must not, without the consent of the Strata Corporation: –
(a) damage or interfere with any lawn, garden, tree, shrub, plant or flower on the Common Property, OR
(b) use any portion of the Common Property for his or her own purposes as a garden.
7. A person bound by these Articles must not:
(a) bring objects or materials onto the site of a kind that are likely to cause justified offence to the other members of the Strata Community; OR
(b) allow refuse to accumulate so as to cause justified offence to others.
8. A person bound by these Articles must not, without the consent of the Strata Corporation. display any sign. advertisement, placard. banner or any other conspicuous material of a similar nature. –
(a) on part of his or her Unit so as to be visible form the outside of the building; OR (b) on any part of the Common Property.
9. The occupier of a Unit may, without the consent of the Strata Corporation, paint, cover or in any other way decorate the inside of any building forming part of the Unit and may, provided that unreasonable damage is not cause to any Common Property, fix locks, catches, screens, hooks and other similar items to that building.
10. The occupier of a Unit used for residential purposes must not, without the consent of the Strata Corporation, use or store on the Unit or on the Common Property any explosive or other dangerous substance.
11. A person bound by these Articles:
(a) must maintain within the Unit, or on a part of the Common Property set apart for the purpose by the Strata Corporation, a receptacle for garbage adequately covered; AND
(b) must comply with all Council By-Laws relating to the disposal of garbage.
12. A Unit holder must immediately notify the Strata Corporation of:
(a) any change in the ownership of the Unit, or any change in the address of an owner: AND
(b) any change in the occupancy of the Unit.
The Corporation has extensive powers to enforce the Articles. Where a unit owner is failing to maintain their unit:
- yard is a mess – overgrown
- rubbish about the unit
- no rubbish bin
- leaking hot water service
28. (1) A strata corporation may, by notice in writing to a unit holder, require the unit holder—
(a) to carry out specified work in pursuance of a duty of maintenance or repair imposed on the unit holder by the articles;
(b) to carry out specified work to remedy a breach of this Act or the articles on the part of the unit holder, a former unit holder, or an occupier or former occupier of the unit;
(c) to carry out specified work required to be carried out on the unit by a public authority or council.
(2) If the unit holder does not comply with a requirement imposed under this section within the time allowed in the notice, a person or persons authorised by the strata corporation may (using such force as may be reasonably necessary in the circumstances) enter the unit and carry out the specified work.
(3) A power of entry must not be exercised under subsection (2) unless the unit holder has been given reasonable notice of the proposed entry.
(4) Any cost reasonably incurred by the strata corporation in having work carried out under this section may be recovered as a debt from the unit holder.
(a) the strata corporation recovers costs from a unit holder under subsection (4); and
(b) the circumstances out of which the work was required are attributable to the act or default of another person, the unit holder may in turn recover those costs from that other person as a debt.