Strata reform

Watch this presentation for an overview of the proposed strata reforms.

Strata reform video transcript

The WA State Government has given Landgate responsibility for delivering strata reforms to Western Australia.

The proposed reforms aim to provide more flexible and sustainable housing options to benefit strata owners, residents, tenants, investors and developers . They aim to improve the way strata schemes work but not to change current strata owners' land titles and boundaries.

You can read the detail of the reforms here on our webpages, view our video presentations or download printable documents containing information on each area of reform.

Latest news - July 2017

The government is progressing the drafting of legislation to reform strata laws in Western Australia.

The reforms will fix current problems experienced by strata owners through better dispute resolution, improved management of schemes, regulation of strata managers and safeguards for the termination of schemes.

The legislation will enable new forms of strata which will lead to sustainable and vibrant local communities where people can live, work and play in METROHUB precincts close to METRONET transport.

We have recently updated some of the reform information on the Landgate website. Take a look at the new strata reform video and read the updated information on:

Tell us what you think by writing to us at stratatitlesactreform@landgate.wa.gov.au

This page will be updated when we are able to confirm the date the draft Bills will be introduced into Parliament.

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Landgate is updating the reform information as drafting progresses.

As a subscriber to the strata reform emails you will be advised when updated information is available and be one of the first to receive news about the strata reforms.

Reasons for reform

Based on current trends, it is predicted that Western Australia’s population will increase to over five million by 2056.

There is a need for more housing to cater for the predicted population increase including more innovative housing options, while also meeting urban infill targets. Strata is important to the WA economy; there are more than 300,000 strata lots, which are conservatively estimated as being worth $170 billion. This number is increasing, with 40 to 50 per cent of all new lots created being strata. Annual sales of strata lots exceed $10.9 billion.

Strata titles are not just about residential properties but also involve retail, commercial and industrial business premises. A more robust and updated legislative framework is needed to support strata title schemes in WA.

Landgate has been asked to deliver strata reforms as a priority to reflect more flexibility in strata developments and provide for better community environments.

There has been no major reform to WA's strata legislation in 20 years.

Benefits to strata lot owners

Improving the management of schemes

  • strata owners will benefit from improved management procedures
  • strata managers will be regulated and made more accountable to carry out comprehensive statutory duties that will be imposed upon them
  • building changes such as the installation of solar panels on common property will be easier.

Simplifying dispute resolution by:

  • making the State Administrative Tribunal (SAT) the one-stop shop for strata disputes
  • strengthening SAT’s powers to efficiently resolve strata disputes.

Better buyer information

To assist buyers in assessing whether living in strata is the right move for them the reforms will give people buying into strata better information about their strata lot.  The disclosure form will be easy to read and give guidance on important issues to consider about strata. Some of the better information buyers will receive include details of strata levies, a statement of the strata company accounts and a copy of the scheme by-laws.

Introducing safeguards for termination of schemes

At the moment, termination can be ordered with just one owner applying to the District Court. The reforms will introduce safeguards requiring a transparent process to be properly followed along with a full procedural and fairness review by SAT.

Benefits to the WA economy

The reforms will deliver new development options to help drive economic growth.

Community title, leasehold strata and the improved strata schemes can all be used to fully develop activity centres where people work, live and play close to public transport and above train stations. supporting the development of METRONET and METROHUBS.

Leasehold strata provides affordable housing in other parts of the world and can do so here in WA.

Staged strata will enable existing strata schemes which are developed in stages to be delivered faster and cheaper by providing greater flexibility to vary those schemes and by cutting some of the red-tape faced by developers when consent to plan variations are required.

Having more development options and streamlining the development process has led to rapid economic growth in other states.

The reform journey

These steps have been completed:

  • development of reform concepts
  • consultation with industry and strata experts
  • reform recommendations approved by government
  • drafting of the the legislation commenced.

These steps are still to be achieved:

  • drafting of the the legislation completed in  accordance with the assigned drafting priority
  • introduction into Parliament
  • successful passage through the upper and lower houses of Parliament
  • draft the Regulations that will support the new legislation
  • effect the new legislation.

The seven areas of reform

There are seven areas of strata reform which will be delivered as a package comprised of the Strata Titles Amendment Bill and the Community Titles Bill.

Read all of the details or watch a video presentation by clicking on one of the links below.

Contact us and have your say

Send your feedback and enquiries about the strata reforms to: StrataTitlesActReform@landgate.wa.gov.au or call Landgate's Customer Service team on +61 (0)8 9273 7373.

Spread the word - download a poster

Let others know about the reforms. Download the reform poster [PDF 0.9MB] to print and display on the noticeboard of your strata scheme or office or email it to other owners and tenants.

What people are saying about the reforms

Allison Hailes,  Chief Executive Officer,  Urban Development Institute of Australia (WA) Inc.

With affordability, sustainability and greater densities high on the agenda for both government and the community, these strata reforms are essential to delivering these outcomes.

Scott Bellerby, President, Strata Community Australia (WA)

Most of us know someone who has had a bad experience in a strata property due to a dispute, whether it be noise, parking, or incorrect use of common areas. In community living, there will also be disputes from time to time and it’s therefore imperative that these disputes can be addressed and resolved in a practical manner, which is not currently the case. The proposed reforms are set to address this.

John Wynne, National Planning Director, Urbis

Urbis is delighted that the WA Government has committed to further reforms to Strata laws.  Urban areas everywhere are becoming more complex and mixed in character, so titling laws need to evolve to reflect this. These changes will facilitate the next generation of development, where public transport, retail, commercial, residential and short stay accommodation may be integrated.

Disclaimer

These web pages have been prepared for the purposes of informing stakeholders and the community on the nature and scope of the proposed reforms to the legislation relating to strata title. Every effort has been made to ensure that the information presented in these web pages is accurate at the time of publication. Because these web pages avoid the use of legal language, information about the law may have been summarised or expressed in general statements. This information should not be relied upon as a substitute for professional legal advice or reference to the actual legislation. The contents of these web pages should not be relied on as a guide for current or future legislation relating to strata title in Western Australia or in relation to current or future development proposals, commercial transactions or dealings in strata title.

Please note: In administering the STA Landgate is principally involved in the registration of plans and titles for the lots and subsequent dealings with plans, lots and common property in the scheme (eg. transfers and mortgages). Landgate provides general assistance in relation to those matters. Other agencies, organisations and industry advisors are better placed to provide assistance on issues concerning managing strata schemes and handling strata disputes.

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This page was last updated on: 10 Jul 2017