Bans on pets, restrictions on smoking, the right to tow rogue parkers’ cars and body corporates being able to issue their own fines for by-law breaches are all included in radical changes proposed for Queensland’s strata laws.
Easier ways of recovering unpaid levies, by-laws being included in sales and rental documents, and a majority of owners being able to force their neighbours to sell the entire block for redevelopment are also floated in the review being considered by the state government.
The most controversial issues in the proposals to update the Body Corporate and Community Management (BCCM) Act were not, as might be suspected, forced sales of apartment in older buildings to clear the way for new developments.
Instead, it was smoking and pets that generated the most submissions to the report commissioned by the state government from Queensland University of Technology’s commercial and property law research centre.
The report proposes that body corporates should be allowed to create a super by-law banning anyone from smoking in a way or in an area where the smoke may drift into another person’s unit, affecting them. There is no proposal to allow bans on smoking per se.
Buildings will also be allowed to have super by-laws banning pets. At the moment schemes can’t legally ban pets but they can have rules governing the way pets behave and are managed.