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  • #59790
    Melbourne newbie


      I’m the chairperson of our committee for a block of 7 flats in Melbourne. We originally wanted an owner from every lot on the committee so everyone was involved in the decision making however only 6 owners were financial at the time. Of the 6 committee members 1 is overseas and not actively participating.  At the next AGM all lot owners will be invited to be on the committee again.

      One of the 4 downstairs flats recently sold (still yet to settle) and the new owner has requested that they can paint the outside bricks of the building in their courtyard. Technically this is common land so needs committee approval. With the 4 remaining active committee members, 2 (both upstairs flat owners) have voted against this, 1 is in support (a downstairs flat owner) and I also don’t have an issue with it (upstairs flat owner). Now that the votes are split I understand it would cone down to the chairperson’s vote. I have no issue with the back wall being painted up to the fence line as it is literally only visible from within the downstairs flats fenced in courtyard but I also don’t want to get the 2 other committee members off side over something I am not really fussed on either way.

      Our property manager has said if we approved it then yes it sets a precedent for the other downstairs flats to do the same if they wanted to, however we would need to agree on the colour/s that could be used and up to what height.

      Any information on this sort of thing or advice on how to handle this would be appreciated.

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    • #59799

        Technically this is common land so needs committee approval.

        Are you certain?  Check the Plan of Subdivision.  If the courtyard is lot property and Interior Face is used (it is the most common), then the lot owner has a right to decorate common property walls that surround their courtyard.  Although outside, the walls are considered to be interior.   That’s due to the Owners Corporations Act 2006 s.132:

        132 Right to decorate interior walls, floors and ceilings
        (1) If a boundary of a lot is shown on a plan of subdivision as being the interior face of the building, the lot owner has the right to decorate or attach fixtures or chattels to that face.

        If however they alter the external appearance (meaning it can be seen from outside the lot) they’d likely need OC permission.  That’s due to the Model Rules. The appearance change would likely have to be significant.  So check if the Model Rules apply to your OC:

        5.2 External appearance of lots
        (1) An owner or occupier of a lot must obtain the written approval of the owners corporation before making any changes to the external appearance of their lot.
        (2) An owners corporation cannot unreasonably withhold approval, but may give approval subject to reasonable conditions to protect quiet enjoyment of other lot owners, structural integrity or the value of other lots and/or common property.

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