Frequently Asked Questions
What do I do in an after-hours emergency? (existing clients)
An emergency is any loss of essential services, or an occurrence that is immediately potentially hazardous to the health and safety of residents/visitors, or which puts your property at risk of significant or further damage. If the occurrence can wait until the following business day to be fixed, it should not be treated as an emergency. Please see our Emergency Maintenance document for specific instructions on what to do.
What is a Strata Company?
A strata company is created upon the registration of a strata plan at Landgate (the State Government Land Department). A strata company is made up of all the owners of the lots comprising the strata plan (also called the scheme). Each owner is a shareholder in the company (refer to The Strata Titles Act 1985, Section 32).
What are the Strata Company’s obligations?
The strata company’s obligations are to manage the common property, if any exists, for the benefit of all owners and to hold such meetings as are required by the Strata Titles Act 1985. The strata company is also required to enforce the by-laws. The Council of Owners carries out the duties and obligations of the strata company.
My husband and I always attend General Meetings; do we need to fill in a Proxy Form?
Yes, only one co-proprietor shall be eligible to vote and we require you to fill in the proxy form nominating who is entitled to vote on behalf of your lot. In the case of an incorporated proprietor such as a company or association, this proxy requires the signature of a duly authorised director, secretary, attorney, officer or agent, who is authorised to sign by its Constitution/Articles of Association.
Do I have to contribute money to the Strata Company?
Yes. A strata company is obliged to establish a fund for administrative expenses that, in the opinion of the company, is sufficient for the control and management of the common property and for the payment of insurance premiums and the discharge of any other obligations of the strata company. You are obliged to contribute to that fund by payment of a regular levy, usually quarterly. You may also be obliged to contribute further money or pay another (special/reserve) levy if the strata company decides to establish a reserve fund for the purpose of accumulating funds to meet contingency expenses, other than those of a routine nature, and other major expenses of the strata company likely to arise in the future.
Are Strata Company funds audited?
There is no requirement under the Strata Titles Act, however Bellcourt Strata Management have their trust audited by HLB Mann Judd annually and can provide financial reports, along with bank statements on a monthly, quarterly, bi-annually basis to the Council of Owners. The annual reports are provided at the Annual General Meetings, so in effect this is similar to an audit process, however, we are more than happy to make available the accounts to be audited by an independent party if so required.
Can Bellcourt Strata Management provide individual bank accounts and interest bearing deposits?
Yes. It is sometimes a requirement under the strata company’s by-laws that individual accounts be set up, so it should be reviewed prior to deciding on who to appoint as your strata manager. It is also recommended should you want your financial records audited. If the appointed strata manager keeps all funds for the strata company’s they have under management in a single bank account, which is often the case, it can be a very expensive exercise to audit individual strata company accounts.
What is the Strata Council / Council of Owners (COO)?
The COO is regarded as the board of directors of the strata company and councillors are elected at general meetings. COM’s have a range of duties and discretionary powers that are there to protect and promote the interests of all owners. An active council is the best way of ensuring that those duties are performed and those powers handled correctly. Any owner can be a councillor. The size of a council can be from 3 to 7 people, although in larger schemes the by-laws may be varied. Meetings are held as and when required and as long as a quorum is achieved those present can exercise all council functions. (refer to The Strata Titles Act 1985, Sections 44 to 48).
Where can I go for independent advice?
What does a Strata Company Manager do?
The role of the Strata Company Manager is to support the COO with the administration of the Strata Company. For more details please refer to SCA WA guide titled “The Role of A Strata Manager” under Useful Information.
Can the council of owners change the strata manager?
Under Section 44 of the Act, the functions of the Strata Company are carried out by the COO therefore they can appoint a new strata manager. It is possible, however, that your current strata manager has a binding contract in place and there may also be additional by-laws that restricts this authority, therefore we advise you check your management contract and by-laws. If you are unhappy with the service you are receiving from your manager, we advise that you first sit down with them to see if any shortcomings or differences can be worked out, before rushing off to find a new strata manager.
What steps are involved in changing to Bellcourt Strata Management?
Once the COO have undertaken a thorough due diligence screening and selected a suitably qualified and experienced strata manager the process is relatively simple. The outgoing management company is advised and a handover date is set, usually at the end of month, once all monthly contractor payments have been made. Bellcourt Strata Management will then collect the cheques for your various accounts, along with your strata company’s books, records, keys, remotes and plans from your previous manager and integrate them into our internal filing system. The financial records are loaded into our system along with minutes and insurance certificates which are published on our website and new copies of your strata plan and by-laws are ordered from Landgate. Owners are allocated login details to our website and all property managers, mortgagees and vendors are advised of the change. During this time your strata manager will work closely with the COO to address any outstanding maintenance and management issues.
When are my levy payments due?
The due dates are decided at the Annual General Meeting and noted in the minutes which are distributed to all owners. We will send an invoice approximately three weeks before your levies are due, but please also diarise the due dates as per the minutes as it is important that if you have not received the levies prior to the due that that you contact us and we can immediately send a second copy.
How can I add an item to the agenda for the next Annual General Meeting?
Please send an email to your strata manager at least one month before the end of your financial year with the details of the agenda item for consideration.
How can I obtain a copy of the by-laws/strata plan?
Please contact our offices and we can organise to complete a Landgate search for you.
Can my selling agent advertise with a For Sale sign outside my unit/on the verge?
Please review your management statement and by-laws and then contact your strata manager prior to the placement of any signs as there are often guidelines and regulations that have been established by the Council of owners when it comes to dealing with signage.
Am I allowed a pet?
Please review your management statement and by-laws and then please fill in the pet application form attached below and send it to [email protected]
. If in doubt, please contact your strata manager prior to submitting this form as there are often guidelines and regulations that have been established by the Council of owners when it comes to dealing with pets.
Can I install an air conditioning unit/satellite dish/shade sail?
Please review your management statement and by-laws and then please contact your strata manager prior to organising the installation of any such item. At a minimum your application form will need to detail the size of the unit, a map and photos on where the licensed contractor intends to install the unit and in the case of an a/c, details on how the condenser unit will be plumbed so as to avoid unwanted water run-off.
How can I pay my strata levies?
Payment options are listed on this website under Existing Owners, Pay Your Levies, and further options are listed on the bottom of our invoices/statements. Please ensure that you use the correct reference number, which is unique to your lot and remains the same for each invoice.