WHEN buying a property in a unit development, the land may be divided by a strata plan and referred to as a strata title.
Owning a strata title means you have individual ownership of an apartment or unit within a block or multi-unit complex. When you buy a property within a strata plan, you buy into a community lifestyle with shared responsibilities and liabilities.
Within the unit or apartment complex, there are common areas of joint ownership. A body corporate administers and maintains these common areas on behalf of all unit holders and arranges maintenance, organises meetings and oversees the day-to-day financial affairs of the unit block.
All unit owners are automatically members of the corporation and have to contribute funds to the running of the corporation.
When purchasing a strata property, make sure you understand the operations and fi- nances of the body corporate before signing the contract.
This information should be given to you when you express your interest as a buyer. Owning a unit or apartment will also allow you to have a say in things affecting the corporation, with one unit usually equalling one vote.
Owning a strata title also means there are restrictions on doing renovations to your property. Unit owners must have permission from the corporation before they go ahead with renovations, especially if it affects the external appearance of the property.
Most decisions are made by a majority vote from all the unit holders.