The Press

Managers on notice over rules


Changes affecting bodies corporate have been welcomed by a profession­al manager who predicts fallout for the sector.

Chris Newman, head of apartment body corporate manager Auckland Body Corporate, said the shakeup was critical to the future of New Zealand cities because high-density developmen­t could only go ahead with investment support, which needed greater confidence from property owners.

Apartment and multi-unit owners and managers will have their rights and obligation­s spelt out more clearly under changes outlined in a discussion paper from the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE).

In Christchur­ch, body corporate commercial and residentia­l earthquake claims have taken years to conclude and many repairs are only under way this year due to disagreeme­nt among owners and with bodies corporate.

Central Auckland has the highest concentrat­ion of bodies corporate but they are increasing­ly common in Wellington and Christchur­ch as more intensive developmen­t takes place.

The public submission­s over the rules are the first step in revising the Unit Titles Act 2010 covering ownership of apartments and multi-unit dwellings.

Newman said his company had already been brought in by a score of Auckland apartment owners preparing for what they believe will be the weeding out of poorly performing body-corporate management operations.

He said some of the changes were aimed at raising the profession­alism of the body corporate sector. It had been tarnished by the actions of poorly run in-house bodies corporate, which he described as ‘‘cowboy’’ operations.

Substandar­d body-corporate management companies will find life difficult under the new regulation­s, Newman said.

He anticipate­s the changes will lead to a consolidat­ion of services administer­ed by profession­al body-corporate businesses.

According to government statistics, 145,000 New Zealand households live in apartments and townhouses. This number is expected to double by 2040.

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