Home Decor

Home renovations in strata home: How to avoid unnecessary hustle

When looking for a new place to live, sometimes you’ll come across a place that would look simply gorgeous with a few improvements. Some people skip over those straight away because they don’t want to be bothered, but some homeowners prefer it that way. It allows them to give the place a personal touch and a bit of personality, and it usually knocks down the price of the property a bit. Sure, it means that you’ll need to put in extra money and effort, but in the end, you’ll have a home completely to your liking, which is a blessing in itself.

Sometimes you simply need to renovate, even though you’ve lived in that home for years. Something breaks or stops working, walls get a bit chipped here and there, or the flooring deteriorates and needs replacing. Still, before you start any actual works, you need to ask some questions. If you are the sole owner of your home, you’re not likely to have any problems. However, if you live in a strata home, things can get complicated. Here are some things you need to do before you renovate a strata home.

1. Understand the property

Firstly, you need to understand that you are not the sole owner of your home. Thus, you need to know what you do and do not own – and by that, what you can and cannot change. You do own the things inside your home, but, walls, windows, and entrance and balcony doors are examples of common property. They do not belong to you personally, so you won’t be able to change them at will. That means that changing the kitchen cabinetry and bathroom vanities are yours to do with them as you please. However, in order to take down an internal wall, you’ll need specific permission.

2. Learn the rules

Before you purchase the property, and before even thinking of renovating, learn the rules. Read the by-laws, because they will give you the info on what is and isn’t allowed when you want to renovate. Be aware of the fact that the by-laws can differ from one strata to another. Therefore, even if you’ve done that before, you should take a bit of time to check, just in case. In general, all cosmetic works (like painting, for example) are allowed, but for anything above that, you’ll need to check the rules.

3. See a professional

Of course, if you have to deal with any sort of rules, it’s good to have an attorney who will look after your interests. If it comes down to business with the owners corporation, it may be wise to have someone to represent you. A trustworthy company like Stevensen lawyers can help you get what you want. Finally, in the worst case scenario – if you get sued, or you want to sue, you’ll need someone to represent you in court, and it’s better if that person knows all the details on the case.

4. Do the paperwork

Make sure your paperwork is complete. Find out what kinds of approval you’ll need, and start collecting them before you start any kind of works on the property. There are several kinds of approvals you’ll need. The first is statutory approvals, which include plumbing approvals, consent development certificate, construction certificate, and so on. You’ll need a document showing that the works you’re planning won’t harm the building in total. BMC approval, Community Association approval, and the approval by the architect who made the building and whore rights you may be infringing are some of the papers you’ll need as well. There is a lot of paperwork, so make sure you’ve done your homework, in order to avoid potential problems.

Home renovation is always a good idea. It makes your home even more yours and makes you love it even more. Still, when it comes to strata home renovation, there are some boundaries you’ll need to respect. Make sure you’re aware of all the important things, and everything should run smoothly.


Leila Dorari

Leila Dorari is an entrepreneur and freelance writer from Sydney. She’s passionate about home improvement and living better lives by nurturing our surroundings. In her free time, you can find her window shopping or exploring new ways to make her life more meaningful.

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