When buying an Apartment or Unit in a Strata Complex in Perth Western Australia it is essential to have an Apartment Inspection completed by an experienced WA Registered Builder. Whether the Apartment is brand new or older, a detailed report will give you clarity on the condition of the Apartment you are buying.
What is Lot Property and Common Property?
If you are new to Apartment living, it is important to understand what makes up a Strata Scheme and the difference between Lot Property and Common Property.
Lot property is the “air space” within your apartment between the wall and floor finishes and ceiling. Included in your Lot Property may also be some exclusive use areas like a car bay and storeroom.
However, strata Common Property does not only exist in areas like driveways, lobbies, walkways etc. There is just as much, if not more common property in exclusive use areas in Apartments. While it does depend on the Strata Plan, many walls inside an Apartment form part of the structure and belong to the “common property” of the Strata Complex.
Understanding what your Lot comprises of and what is Common Property is the first step to appreciating why an inspection limited to the structure falls short of completing adequate property due diligence when buying an apartment.
Be Aware of New Strata Regulations
It is helpful for buyers of Apartments to understand the condition of the Strata Complex’s structure and common areas which is partly why on 1st May 2019 the new Strata Titles Regulations 2019 came into effect.
Part of the reforms included the requirement for designated schemes to have a 10-Year Plan in place. The 10-Year plan covers the common property of the scheme that may require repair, replacement or renewal and includes a recommendation for the funding of the estimated costs.
A buyer purchasing a strata property has the right to request a copy of the 10-year plan. The 10-Year plan gives buyers and owners visibility over the planned maintenance of the structure and common area.
Be Prepared Before You Buy
So, what does all this mean for someone buying into a Strata Complex? Well firstly ensure your offer includes a condition that allows for proper due diligence of the property and request a copy of the 10-Year plan if applicable.
Then, engage a Building Inspector experienced in Apartment Inspections to check and report on all building elements, fixtures and fittings that belong to the individual Lot.
Home Integrity has developed an inspection specifically for buyers of Apartments. Our Apartment inspections are extensive and are not limited to the structural components/adequacy. We can check over 150 items in an average 2-bedroom apartment.
They not only include the condition and operation of appliances, but also, fixtures and fittings (plumbing, cabinetry, and tiling) as well as external parking and stores. Our team of inspectors are all registered builders who know how apartments are built and what areas are prone to significant issues.