Property Maintenance: Who is Responsible?
Responsibilities of Strata Owners
When you own a house, it is easy to understand that what you own is the building and the land which surrounds it. Owners of houses also know the property belongs to them, and they can approach their municipality to obtain a copy of the plan that describes the boundaries. House owners know intuitively that when it comes to repairs, they are responsible to repair and maintain their house and their land.
For the owners of strata lots in a strata corporation, it can be more difficult to understand what they own and what they do not own. It can be more complicated to understand who is responsible to repair and maintain, and what an owner’s rights are. Your strata property management company can help owners and the strata council to understand their respective responsibilities.
Guidelines for Strata Lots & Strata Councils
The Ministry of Energy, Mines and Natural Gas – Office of Housing and Construction Standards has also developed two guides to help owners of strata lots and strata councils:
1. ‘The Role and Responsibility of Strata Lot Owners (Guide 5)’
2. ‘Who is Responsible for Repairs (Guide 20)’
Every strata council is now required by the provincial government to keep depreciation reports. This is a 30 year outline for how the strata will handle repairs, upgrades and ongoing maintenance. As a strata owner, your monthly fees will support a contingency fund for these costs, as well as the monthly maintenance.
Strata owners should be up to speed on what your strata corporation’s depreciation report looks like, to understand how it will impact your fees long-term. The report is an important piece in the guidance of timely repairs to your building, which affects your home as an investment. If your strata council needs help maintaining the property or maintenance planning, consider hiring the services of a strata property manager for peace of mind.