It’s probably safe to say in the chaos that is life, you haven’t spent too much time pondering who your body corporate is, what they do and what you should be aware of as an apartment owner. The truth is, they are the silent partner within your apartment complex that keeps things running (sometimes literally) and keeps you and your neighbors accountable to fair conduct. Let’s carve some time out of your day to have a quick look into your body corporate and what it means to you as an apartment owner.
What is a body corporate?
Your body corporate is a real estate management group that manages your apartment complex and community. What this looks like will vary depending on the type of apartment complex you are in, how many residents there are, and the facilities and amenities that are available to you as an apartment owner. Your body corporate is tasked with managing communal areas and shared facilities, which includes their maintenance as well as how they are used. The stunning landscaping and pool maintenance doesn’t just happen by anyone, it is your body corporate who maintains the apartment complex standard that you bought into.
Another critical role they play is keeping the peace, which isn’t to say that your apartment complex has conflict but rather that they are the third party entity who rolls out formal communications and enforces apartment rules so that you or your neighbor don’t get tasked with that responsibility. These communications can be rolled out via email, letterbox drop, signage or even a regular meeting attended by renters and owners alike.
Managing financials, works and maintenance
If there was a physical kitty passed around to apartment owners that collected funds for upcoming works and maintenance – it wouldn’t take long before that broke down and become very messy. Your body corporate takes this off your hands, so if you are thinking you or your peers must wear this yourself, you don’t have to and nor should you legally. This also means that if you have spent some money here or there on items and services that have benefited the apartment complex – you can pass that onto your body corporate for compensation as it is shared with the owner’s committee. They will also make the arrangements for the stairs to be fixed and will get quotes and contract the right company to complete the works accompanied by a robust construction schedule.
What if your body corporate doesn’t cut it?
Unfortunately, this is not unheard of, and there can be an enormous difference between a great and average body corporate and many horror stories in circulation. A good rule of thumb is that if you never think about your body corporate, then chances are they are doing everything they should when they should. You want your apartment community to feel like a sanctuary, with everything working as it should and your fellow residents acting according to your rules and conduct. If you feel that your body corporate is not up to this task, get together with the other apartment owners in the complex and discuss engaging another body corporate company to meet with you and discuss how what they would do differently if they were managing your apartments.
Has that clouded your understanding of body corporate, or do you now feel like you know what they do and how they can add value? The best part is that they are always available to talk to owners and are open to feedback on rule changes and facilities improvements, so don’t feel shy and make yourself known to the body corporate managing your home.