All strata schemes have a set of by-laws (rules) that owners, occupiers and, in some cases, visitors must follow. By-laws cover issues such as whether or not pets are permitted on the scheme, how smoking is regulated, parking, noise, and the conduct of residents and visitors.
The owners corporation can enforce these rules through the Tribunal, which may penalise a person who breaches a by-law.
Owners corporations can determine the bylaws that suit the preferred lifestyle of the strata scheme. By-laws cannot be harsh, unconscionable or oppressive, restrict children from the scheme, or restrict dealings in a lot, such as the owner renting out their lot.
You can access a set of model by-laws from the Fair Trading website, which provide ‘sample rules’ to guide the owners corporation in setting their own by-laws.
These may be adopted as is, or with changes to suit the individual scheme’s requirements.
To make or change a by-law, the owners corporation must agree to a motion put forward on the proposed new by-law with no more than 25% of votes cast against it.
All strata schemes must review their by-laws by 30 November 2017. This helps make sure the by-laws are up-to-date.
© State of New South Wales (NSW Fair Trading). For current information go to fairtrading.gov.au