If you have some understanding of Body Corporate, there’s a good chance you know about Owners Corporation – this is because Owners Corporation is basically just the new term for Body Corporate. If you don’t know a single thing about Owners Corporation, however, make sure to read on! In essence, an Owners Corporation is a body that collectively manages a subdivision of a building or land that features multiple occupants. This then means that if you own a property affected by an Owners Corporation, you are automatically a member of that Owners Corporation. There’s a lot more to it, though, so in this article we take a look at what Owners Corporation management is all about.
Owners Corporation basics
Due to the complexity of the Owners Corporation system, those looking to remedy a legal dispute will have to secure the aid of Owners Corporation lawyers, as these legal professionals specialise in navigating the intricate field. To be more specific about the residences related to an Owners Corporation, these will usually be made up of apartments, flats, units, townhouses, and commercial estates. It doesn’t necessarily matter whether these properties are classed as residential, retail, commercial, industrial or mixed use – as long as a planned subdivision containing common property is registered with Land Victoria, an Owners Corporation is automatically created. Common property can be made up of more elaborate things like gardens, swimming pools, tennis courts or even smaller things that are often ignored, such as fences, passages, walls, pathways, driveways and lifts. There are many responsibilities that befall Owners Corporation Management, with functions including things like repair and maintenance of common property, administration of land and buildings, overseeing and maintaining appropriate insurance (such as compulsory public liability insurance), providing general management services and overseeing and enforcing the rules and regulations of the Owners Corporation.
Managing rules and regulations
There are many aspects of the subdivisions the Owners Corporation has to oversee, leading to some very complex and diverse decision making practices. Although they can vary to a great degree, decisions and resolutions of the Owners Corporation fall into 3 categories or levels – these are ordinary resolution, special resolution or unanimous resolution, with the category obviously being chosen in relation to the need at hand. In each of these forms of resolution there is also a differing requirement for passing the resolution – in the case of ordinary resolution, a minimum of 50% of eligible votes are required to pass the resolution, while a special resolution (which involves matters related to fees, expenditure, leasing or licensing) requires 75% of eligible votes to pass the resolution, and unanimous resolution requires 100% of eligible votes to pass. Unanimous resolution is required to resolve matters related to selling or buying common property, altering boundaries and managing lot entitlement or liability.
The levels of the Owners Corporation
There are four levels that constitute an Owners Corporation — the owners corporation (which consists of all the lot business owners), the committee (which consists of elected lot owners), a chosen delegate (such as a chairperson, the secretary, a committee member etc), and a delegate of the committee itself. As an entity consisting of all the lot owners, the Owners Corporation keeps control of all decision-making, has the ability to delegate powers where deemed acceptable, is capable of overturning earlier decisions and can appoint sub-committees where appropriate.