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Strata Myths

As we know, strata living is a great way to experience a vibrant, connected community in a convenient location, so it’s no surprise to see the number of Western Australians that are flocking to strata communities, to enjoy all it is they have to offer. However, with the rise in popularity of strata, also comes the perpetuation of certain myths surrounding strata living, that often cause confusion and misunderstandings among residents and owners.


Myth #1

Pets aren’t allowed in strata lots in WA.

One of the most common misconceptions surrounding strata living is that there is a restriction on pets being able to live in apartments and townhouses in Western Australia. The WA Strata Titles Act 1985 does not create a specific restriction that limits the ability of strata residents to keep pets. However, the by-laws of your specific scheme may restrict the keeping of pets, so whilst the majority of schemes allow pets under reasonable conditions, it is important for tenants to check their own by-laws to ensure that they are not in breach.


Myth #2

Living in strata means the loss of privacy and independence.

Due to the communal nature of strata living, many people believe that residing in a strata complex means sacrificing their privacy. Whilst living close to others does require one to make certain considerations about how their actions impact others, strata residents can still enjoy independence and personal autonomy. Strata scheme by-laws often dictate restrictions on the level of noise, and outline expectations of respectful behaviour that allows residents to fully enjoy their personal space.


Myth #3

Strata by-laws cannot be changed.

Strata by-laws are not laws that are set in stone for eternity. The by-laws that govern a strata complex can be changed, if necessary, either through a vote by the owners of the strata scheme or via order from the State Administrative Tribunal. However, that’s not to say that by-laws can be changed on a whim. Any changes to by-laws must be reasonable, agreed upon and not unfairly impacting residents for any reason. Importantly, strata managers play a key role in ensuring that the by-laws for a strata scheme are implemented correctly.


Myth #4

Strata levies are too expensive and unnecessary.

Some potential residents of strata are often deterred by what they perceive to be the high cost of strata levies. However, strata levies are essential to maintaining the strata property and the associated common areas. They cover all costs that contribute to making strata living so appealing, such as building maintenance, insurance, gardening and other shared expenses. Strata levies are determined through a process of budgeting, prioritisation and the projection of expenses for the year, to ensure that the levies are fair and equitable.


Myth #5

Strata living is only for young people and retirees.

Strata living is often associated with being particularly attractive to both retirees and young professionals, due to its convenience and relatively lower cost barries when compared to standalone homes. However, in reality, strata communities are incredibly diverse, and are made up of a myriad of different kinds of people. Strata living can be, and is, suitable for families, singles and people of all ages, demographics and lifestyles. The range of amenities, communal spaces and engagement opportunities make strata appealing to all. To create a sense of community in strata, ensure that as a tenant an effort is made to get to know your neighbours, attend events, encourage participation and responsivity to concerns and the needs of others.

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