The New South Wales Government is set to start a comprehensive review of NSW strata and community title laws in the middle of 2012.

Given that more and more people are now living or investing in apartments and homes that are covered by the legislation this review deserves support and active participation. Not only from current owners by from across all levels of the industry.

The review being undertaken by NSW Fair Trading, will look at current legislation some of which is now more than 20 years old. For anyone currently impacted by the laws or considering the purchase of a new property I think the review is a good idea.

Apartment living is no longer a stopgap measure on the path to buying a ‘traditional’ free standing home. For many it’s now a preference and for many others a major investment choice.

Community consultation and participation

From the Fair Trading website I note that it is easy to take part in the community consultation. Global Access Partners is currently hosting an online community forum and anyone interested can register their details and participate in this online consultation.

To get full details simply go to www.openforum.com.au/strata

The online forum has been open for some weeks now and will run up until 29th February 2012. The review will cover all five current Acts and a quick scan shows that some interesting topics are already emerging.

These include: The rights of tenants and investors, including a suggestion that tenants should be able to attend Strata Plan meetings, the role of strata managers, financial reporting, proxy farming and the termination of a strata plan.

Interestingly a college told me they heard on ABC local radio last weekend (Saturday 21st January 2012) a very lively debate about this topic in particular the idea that tenants should have some formal role in management issues.

Let’s keep an eye on the progress of this important discussion. How Strata Plans are managed and the levies involved are central points that I will say more about over the next few weeks.