What is the Role of a Strata Manager?

strata manager
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Managing shared or co-owned property is a challenging task, as it’s a multi-faceted requirement that involves legalities, communication, and knowledge of finance. To help take this burden off your shoulders, strata managers come to your rescue. Strata managers, also known as body corporate managers, play a critical role in the smooth operation of strata communities across Australia.

A strata manager is decisive in ensuring a strata scheme operates smoothly. They relieve individual owners of the day-to-day management tasks and help to ensure that the property is well maintained, finances are in order, and legal obligations are met. A skilled strata manager can add significant value to a strata property by ensuring it’s well-run and helping maintain or even increase its value over time.

Who Appoints a Strata Manager?

Strata properties consist of multiple individual units, such as apartments or townhouses, along with common areas like pools, lifts, gardens, and gyms, all owned and used collectively by all the property owners.

These properties have a legal entity, the Owners Corporation, or the Body Corporate, comprised of individual owners, that governs and manages the strata scheme. The strata manager is appointed by the Owners Corporation or the Body Corporate to help manage the strata property.

Roles and Duties of a Strata Manager

With cosmopolitan localities on the rise across Australia, strata management assumes critical significance, as property dwellers or owners can invest their time and resources into more productive activities. A well-endowed strata manager will provide the following services:

Administrative Duties: The strata manager oversees the daily administration of the strata scheme. This includes handling correspondences, maintaining records and documents, and scheduling and managing meetings of the Owners Corporation.

Financial Management: Strata managers are responsible for preparing budgets, managing the financial accounts of the strata scheme, and ensuring that the owners pay their levies on time. They also help to collect these levies, manage arrears, and pay bills on behalf of the Owners Corporation.

Maintenance and Repairs: Strata managers coordinate the maintenance and repairs of the common property. They liaise with contractors, get quotes, and ensure the work is done satisfactorily and within budget.

Regulatory Compliance: Strata managers ensure that the Owners Corporation complies with laws and regulations applicable to strata properties. This includes understanding and applying the relevant Strata Titles Act, rules, and local council by-laws.

Dispute Resolution: Strata managers often play a role in resolving disputes between owners or between owners and the Owners Corporation. They should have a good understanding of the strata scheme’s by-laws and the processes for resolving disputes.

Insurance: They manage insurance policies for the strata property, including making claims when necessary. They rectify the failure of the owners to maintain insurance, keep adequate records or hold AGMs could open the owner’s corporation to penalties for non-compliance.
Advantages of Hiring a Strata Manager

Efficiency: Strata managers have the necessary tools, resources, and networks to manage properties efficiently. They can promptly address repairs and maintenance issues and coordinate services like cleaning, gardening, and security more effectively than individual owners might.

Expertise: Strata managers are experts in their field. They understand the complex legislation and regulations surrounding strata management and have the knowledge to ensure compliance.

Conflict Resolution: Strata communities often encounter conflicts, such as disputes over common property or disagreements over strata rules. Strata managers can mediate such conflicts, helping to resolve disputes professionally and objectively.

Financial Prowess: Strata managers can handle the financial aspects of strata living, including budgeting, collection of levies, and management of the sinking fund. They can also ensure that all financial transactions and records are transparent and in accordance with legal requirements.

Timesaving: For individual owners, managing a strata property can be time-consuming. By hiring a strata manager, owners can focus on other aspects of their life while the strata manager handles the administrative tasks.

Reduced Legal Liability: Strata managers ensure compliance with strata laws and regulations, reducing the potential legal liability for the strata corporation or owners’ corporation. This could include guaranteeing all insurance is up to date, safety regulations are followed, and all necessary meetings are held and recorded as required.

Property Value Retention: By ensuring that the building and common areas are well-maintained and any issues are quickly addressed, strata managers help maintain and potentially increase the property value, benefiting the individual owners.

Effective Communication: Strata managers act as a central point of contact for owners, tenants, and service providers. They can effectively manage and disseminate information, ensuring everyone is informed and updated.

In the long run, hiring a strata manager will enhance the competency and professionalism of any strata body in Australia. However, factoring in a region’s specific regulations, compliances, and legalities is essential before opting for a strata manager. This helps reduce effort, save time, and zero in on the best prospect at the earliest.

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