7 May 2021 LONDON -- Fire broke out Friday in a London, U.K., apartment tower which has cladding similar to that used on another housing block in the city where 72 people died in a 2017 blaze. London Fire Brigade said about 125 firefighters tackled a fire that spread to three floors of a 19-storey building in the city's Docklands. The fire brigade said "firefighters wearing breathing apparatus have carried out [...]
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So far Sonya Acton has created 67 blog entries.
5 May 2021 Apartment owners in Sydney’s Mascot Towers will vote this month on a $40 million proposal to sell their troubled apartment tower as a redevelopment site, with many resigned to losing up to 80 per cent on their property as the most realistic way to end their two-year nightmare. Apartment advocacy group Owners Corporation Network says a review of NSW strata laws under way should reduce the scope for [...]
25 April 2021 As if they weren't expensive enough, new Sydney home prices are being pushed up by sky rocketing insurance claims that are gouging taxpayers for more than $700 million. Claims have surged for defective work by dodgy builders - some who've since disappeared. OCN's Executive Officer, Karen Stiles, was interviewed for this news article. Seven News > View recording here
19 April 2021 Owners of high-rise buildings in Sydney will finally receive advice from the NSW government as early as Monday about what products they should use to replace flammable cladding found on their towers. The long-awaited findings from a report by the state’s cladding product safety panel are set to be released, helping to end years of uncertainty in NSW about whether replacement products are safe or too risky. “Owners [...]
15 April 2021 When NSW Planning tried to finish its planning instrument, it was the start of a whole new set of problems. There’s an old saying in politics that if you’ve upset everyone, then you must be doing something right. Or perhaps you just screwed up spectacularly. Late last week when the NSW government finally released the second part of its new regulations on short-term holiday letting, there was something [...]
13 April 2021 The owners corporation of an ageing strata block in Tamarama are breaking new ground in financing a $20 million upgrade to address concrete cancer, fire risks and overall unattractiveness. They are developing a whole new penthouse level for the building that will be sold to finance around half the cost of works. It has taken many years of effort and advocacy – but if you read the profile [...]
April 13 2021 “The NSW Government “announced” its final Short Term Letting policy late Friday, with no warning to housing organisations”, Jane Hearn, OCN spokesperson said today. “In a bizarre twist, the Minister has legalised Airbnb in the Affordable Rental Housing SEPP, disguising the mass transfer of critical housing to the tourist market”. “It takes some chutzpah to give into Airbnb and Expedia in the middle of pandemic, with house prices [...]
13 APRIL 2021 The NSW government has decided to delay the introduction of new rules for Airbnb-style letting across the state by three months after an outcry from councils and online rental company Stayz. The short-term letting rules were due to come into force on July 30, but the government has decided within the past 24 hours to delay their introduction to November 1. But the non-profit Owners Corporation Network, which [...]
April 12 2021 Late Friday 9 April 2021 the NSW Government quietly “announced” its stripped-down and “final” short-term letting policy. In the middle of a housing crisis, the Government has legalised “Airbnb” facilitating the loss of thousands of apartments and houses across NSW. In a bizarre twist, it used an amendment to the Affordable Rental Housing Policy 2009 to achieve its goal! This would be comic if it was not such [...]
April 12 2021 OCN does not support the extension of this emergency arrangement for alternative electronic methods for meeting or voting. OCN is recommending that the Act should not be amended to remove the requirement that an owners corporation must make a conscious decision to use alternative electronic methods. The emergency measure that overrides the Act should be allowed to expire. Download statement- PDF