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Step 1 Draft the By-Law

Using DIY By-Laws you can easily add your lot details, select what areas you are renovating and attach the relevant plans to create a by-law and motion instantly! Your by-law will describe any impact there may be to common property (for example, waterproofing in bathroom, moving plumbing or external walls).

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Step 2 Before the Meeting

You will now need to give your draft by-law and consent form to your strata manager to be included in the agenda for the next annual general meeting. If there is not one coming up anytime soon, ask your strata manager the fee to call a meeting.

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Step 3 The Agenda

The strata manager will attach your motion to the agenda and be sent out to owners in your strata scheme 21 days before the meeting.

Make sure you have also given your consent form to the strata manager before the meeting.

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Step 4 The General Meeting

Your motion will be discussed at the AGM and details will be reviewed. Then a vote will be taken by all owners attending (and via proxy) the AGM on your motion. This will be specially resolved and you will get approval or could be asked to provide changes or more detail. A majority vote will get this approved.

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Step 5 Consolidation

Once this has been resolved, the new by-law needs to be added to full list of by-laws, thereby consolidating the new one with the existing by-laws.


DIY By-Laws can assist you with this step too!

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Step 6 Registration

The new by-law must be registered with Land Registry Services within 6 months.

A lawyer, your strata manager or DIY By-Laws can also assist you with this step.

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Step 7 Start Your Renovation!

Now that you have completed all the necessary steps you can start your renovations.


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No By-Law? No Sale? Digging yourself a Hole with an Unauthorised Renovation

Categories: Common Property

The Owners – Strata Plan No 9319 v Lovell [2020] NSWCATCD

Bannermans received instructions from an owners corporation that had recently discovered extensive unauthorised works to the common property, undertaken by a lot owner some years earlier. The owner undertook extensive excavation works underneath the lot to create a subterranean area complete with speakers and a video projector. These works were then concealed by a motorised trap door near the entry way. The owners corporation submitted that the unauthorised works did not have Council approval.

The lot owner alleged that the works were necessary to facilitate the installation of a sump pump underneath the lot to extract excess ground water. At the time the owners corporation discovered the unauthorised works, the property was being marketed for sale.

Bannermans pointed out the risks involved in allowing the property to sell whilst the unauthorised works were outstanding. Bannermans commenced proceedings in the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal to have the unauthorised works removed and the common property reinstated.

Throughout the duration of the proceedings, the lot owner indicated their willingness to proceed with the sale and her refusal to provide an undertaking not to sell until the proceedings were determined.

Orders Granted

Within five weeks of commencing proceedings, Bannermans was successful in obtaining the following orders for the owners corporation:

1. That the lot owner permanently seal the subterranean area within 4 months. Provided they obtained confirmation from a structural engineer, a hydraulic engineer and Council that the works to seal the subterranean area would not adversely impact on the common property; or

2. If the lot owner was unable to obtain the above advice and/or Council consent, they were required to permanently seal the trap door and reinstate the subterranean living area to a condition as close as practicable to its condition prior to the carrying out of the unauthorised works within 4 months; or

3. In the alternative to the above, within 14 days the lot owner could provide a written undertaking to the

Tribunal and the owners corporation that they would not sell the property until a by-law could be made either by the owners corporation or failing this, by Tribunal order. If a by-law was not made by the owners corporation or the Tribunal, then the lot owner was required to reinstate the works as per orders 1 and 2 above.

It should be noted that as a result of the lot owner not first seeking the proper authorisation for the works, many months of time was lost, they were unable to sell the property and unnecessary costs incurred. The moral of the story is, before carrying out works to common property, obtain the appropriate by-law and approvals from the owners corporation and Council.

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