You’re going about your day when you suddenly spot signs of water damage on your walls or ceiling. What happens next – and who’s responsible when it comes to a strata property in NSW?
It could be from a neighbour’s bath overflowing, or a burst pipe within the walls. However if the leak occurs or worsens after it rains, there’s a good chance your strata building needs roof repairs.
Who’s responsible for strata roof repairs?
While this will depend specifically on your strata title, for most strata properties the owners corporation will be responsible for resolving an issue with the roof. If private property has been damaged or affected by an issue on common property, this may also be the responsibility of the owners to manage or repair.
What’s the first step in a roof leak repair?
The first step is to notify your strata committee or strata manager, who should arrange for someone to inspect the issue. If you have a strata manager, they may have authorisation to source quotes and arrange repairs on behalf of the owners corporation.
What if the roof needs replacing?
Major repairs such as a roof replacement will need to be voted in by special resolution, meaning approval from 75% or more of the owners. A larger and more complex roof replacement or roof repairs in Sydney could be covered by the capital works fund if there are enough resources to cover these changes. If there isn’t enough money in the capital works fund for a major repair like a roof replacement, then a special levy can be approved by special resolution at a meeting of the owners.
What about the damage to my property?
This depends on the source of any water damage. If the fault occurred on a neighbouring property, they would be responsible for the damage to yours. If the fault occurred on common property, this might either be covered by the owners corporation or by the strata insurance policy, depending on the specific cause of damage. You can speak to your strata manager or strata committee if you need to make this type of claim.
What if I’m not sure whose responsibility the leak is?
If the source of water damage isn’t clear, the best bet is to contact your strata manager, building manager or strata committee immediately. The earlier you can address any signs of water damage, the less severe the damage is likely to be. So if you see mould, drips or watermarks – act as soon as possible!