15 JUNE 2020 Owners in Sydney's Opal Tower say they are struggling to pay for ongoing costs arising from cracks in the 36-storey building, after spending about $1 million over the past 18 months. The owners' corporation is considering a special levy to pay for fees for lawyers, engineers and other consultants, as well as $1.28 million in insurance premiums for the new financial year. Owner Andrew Neverly, 60, shut his [...]
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5 JUNE 2020 HomeBuilder is a good idea gone bad. It is possibly the most complex and least equitable program the government could have devised to deliver construction jobs. It gives $25,000 to people who already own a home or already have enough money to buy one while delivering a minimal stimulus to extra construction. It isn’t a program to create jobs, it is a way of making people who are [...]
3 JUNE 2020 The NSW Building Commissioner has warned unscrupulous builders and developers responsible for major defects in apartments that he will not hesitate to use his new powers to bring them to account, after key legislation to clean up the construction industry became law. Heralding it a "red-letter day", David Chandler said his immediate focus would be on developers, builders and certifiers "who have form" in turning out shoddy work. [...]
3 JUNE 2020 The NSW building regulator will have sweeping new powers to withhold occupation certificates for apartment and other buildings that are not up to standard, denying developers the ability to settle their projects, under new laws passing Parliament. Building Commissioner David Chandler will require selected developers to inform him six months ahead of their planned completion date and undergo monthly inspections by an architect, engineer and builder, under terms [...]
1 JUNE 2020 The NSW building commissioner is set to gain strong powers to stop builders from forcing off-the-plan sales of apartments with defects after Labor signalled it would support a proposed shake-up of the construction industry. After abandoning attempts late last year to pass key legislation, the Berejiklian government will reintroduce an amended bill to the upper house on Tuesday, and introduce another to the lower house which will, if [...]
30 MAY 2020 The Berejiklian government has been urged to put its proposed reforms to the state's building industry back before the upper house, to avoid a repeat of the Opal and Mascot towers debacles while it fast tracks developments in an attempt to spur the economy. In its final report released on Thursday, a NSW parliamentary inquiry into building standards recommended that the powers of Building Commissioner David Chandler, who [...]
29 MAY 2020 We’re building a lot of apartments in Australia. High-density precincts are being developed across our major cities. But these buildings and neighbourhoods are often not designed and managed in ways that meet the needs of lower-income residents. Our research identifies five key problem areas. We also propose a broad range of solutions, including six outlined in this article. Some are easy to apply and others will require more [...]
29 MAY 2020 The owners of Sydney's Mascot Towers are claiming more than $15 million in damages from the developer of a neighbouring building they allege is responsible for major cracks appearing in the apartment complex they were forced to evacuate almost a year ago. Fair Trading is also investigating the certification work on Peak Towers, which was developed by Aland Developments and neighbours the 132-unit Mascot Towers in Sydney's inner-south. [...]
27 May 2020 Two of Sydney’s biggest apartment towers have won their battle to ban owners’ pets from their buildings in a verdict that will have far-reaching repercussions for NSW strata residents. The 260-apartment Horizon in Darlinghurst and the 280-unit Elan in Kings Cross had lost the right in previous cases before the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal (NCAT) to enforce their bylaws to keep their premises animal free. But, now [...]
26 MAY 2020 We talk to Karen Stiles, the energetic executive officer of the Owners Corporation Network about how that key organisation is coping with the challenge of building a community of communities when coronavirus is trying to keep us all at home. The answer lies in technology, she says, and to prove it, they had a very successful seminar on how to keep the short-term letting wolves from the door, [...]