OCN in the Media

OCN in the Media2023-12-20T18:36:38+11:00
7May, 2024

Serious Defects Plaguing Apartments

Sky News host James Macpherson says the poor quality of strata apartment buildings is “killing owners”. “Even if they don’t have defects in their building,” he said. His comments come as a new report from the New South Wales government, which looked at 600 new or strata buildings, and found 53 per cent of them had serious or major defects within six years of being built. “The Owners Corporation Network [...]

4May, 2024

Dire warning for Aussies in apartments

Australians who’ve tried to escape colossal house prices by living in an apartment face another looming disaster. Amid challenging circumstances for prospective home buyers, purchasing an apartment or a unit has been a viable means of escaping the rental crisis for many, but it has also proven to be a strategy that comes with potential downsides of its own, such as: Building defects Rising cost of repairs Rising cost of [...]

25April, 2024

Electric vehicle dilemma faced by millions of Aussie residents: ‘It’s a nightmare’

Aussie man Robert Till has been desperate to ditch his 2011 Holden Calais for an EV for the past three years, but he faces a common dilemma felt by millions of apartment dwellers across the country. With no charging infrastructure currently available at his block in Brisbane, he would have nowhere to charge his vehicle. And the "simple" solution he's proposed requires body corporate approval, but he's been told no. Fred Tuckwell, chair at [...]

18April, 2024

Call for rebates to help apartment dwellers go green

18 APRIL 2024 Independent Federal MP Allegra Spender spoke at last week's OCN webinar "Shared Solar for Apartments" noting that even though many households had solar panels there was a significant divide between those in freestanding homes and apartment complexes. "Australia has one of the highest penetrations of solar power in the world, but about half of Australia's households are locked out," she said. Fred Tuckwell, OCN Chair noted apartment [...]

9April, 2024

Strata reforms send bills soaring from just $5,000 to $60,000

9 APRIL 2024 In response to emergency evacuations the NSW government response was the NSW Design and Building Practitioners Act 2020, which imposes complex obligations on practitioners and builders to ensure safeguards. An overarching law, the same regulations apply to new buildings as existing ones. NSW is the only state to enforce such rigour. Patch repairs to mixed-use buildings and strata apartments – the fastest-growing form of Australian property ownership [...]

2April, 2024

ABC is asking apartment owners to share their stories

In light of the recent 730 Report expose on allegations that a major NSW strata management firm has been charging excessive fees for insurance services and receiving payments from suppliers without full disclosure of the arrangements, the ABC is now asking owners to share their stories abc.net.au/strata OCN celebrates and supports those strata managing agents acting ethically.  However this is not an isolated case and we see this as an [...]

25March, 2024

Strata practices report unleashes torrent of criticism

25 MARCH 2024 Allegations that a major NSW strata management firm has been charging excessive fees for insurance services without full disclosure of the arrangements have touched a nerve and triggered a torrent of criticism directed at practices within the sector. The Australian Consumers Insurance Lobby (ACIL), a strong advocate on strata insurance issues, last week joined with the Owners Corporation Network of Australia (OCN) and the Unit Owners Association [...]

22March, 2024

ACIL, apartment owners call for ‘thorough investigation’

22 MARCH 2024 The Australian Consumers Insurance Lobby (ACIL), the Owners Corporation Network of Australia (OCN) and the Unit Owners Association of Queensland (UOAQ) have issued a joint call for national and NSW regulators to start a “thorough investigation” into the practices of strata management firm Netstrata and its associated entities following issues identified by the ABC this week. “The integrity of the strata management and insurance sectors is paramount [...]

18March, 2024

Two Blokes Talking Techpodcast: this time talking Tech: E-mobiltiy devices

Two blokes podcast  talk Strata with Chair Fred Tuckwell and how EVs are being considered in Apartments, the rules, issues, myths and support you can get if you live in an apartment Listen here > https://www.theleader.com.au/story/8522957/cheap-damaged-e-scooters-may-be-banned-in-apartments/ Related content:> https://ocn.org.au/e-bike-fire-risk-expert-webinar/

14March, 2024

The apartment building with sustainability at its core

14 MARCH 2024 The Antias building, with 43 apartments and part of the Jackson’s Landing precinct in Pyrmont, has undertaken significant efforts to enhance its environmental sustainability since its completion in June 2012. The lessons learned include a combination of financial prudence, community engagement, strategic grant utilisation and a commitment to embracing emerging technologies and standards for long-term environmental benefits. “We would not have pursued these important ratings had it [...]

9March, 2024

How to get Australia’s bodies corporate to go green and save money

9 MARCH 2024 Whether you’re an owner or a renter living in an apartment, navigating the body corporate can be like tiptoeing through a minefield of different opinions and competing interests. So how do you negotiate making eco-improvements to your building, when it can be hard enough to get agreement on rules for hanging out your washing? A good first step, according to Megan Chatterton, chief resilience officer for the [...]

6March, 2024

Strata bankruptcies – more compassion is needed for genuine cases

Applications by owners’ corporations to make individual owners bankrupt were about one in eight forced bankruptcy filings in NSW last year OCN, which represents owners’ corporations, is backing reform. Executive director Karen Stiles said people in genuine hardship should be treated with more compassion Read the article here:>https://www.smh.com.au/national/nsw/unjust-and-unfair-how-karen-nearly-lost-everything-to-strata-debt-20240303-p5f9d9.html Related content:> Australian Consumer Law and Owners Corporations

3March, 2024

‘Unjust and unfair’: How Karen nearly lost everything to strata debt

3 MARCH 2024 Karen Go was nearly made bankrupt two years ago by the strata manager of her block of flats in Sydney’s east over nearly $20,000 in strata levies and legal fees.  She was one of 306 NSW residents, or more than one a week, who faced forced bankruptcy proceedings from strata debt between 2019 and 2023, a legal process that means they can lose their homes over debts as [...]

26February, 2024

Strata Reform needed in NSW

John Minns warned that strata reform is necessary in NSW in an interview on 9 News Australia last week View the video here:> John Minns called for Strata Reform 9 News Related content:> https://ocn.org.au/e-bike-fire-risk-expert-webinar/

15February, 2024

Cheap, damaged e-scooters may be banned in apartments

15 FEBRUARY 2024 Cheap, imported or damaged electric scooters, bikes and skateboards could be banned in apartments or their owners held liable for fires they cause under by-laws suggested by one of Australia's leading strata groups. The Owners Corporation Network (OCN) has launched a legal template suggesting new rules on the use of battery-powered mobility devices in apartment buildings, as well as a "code of conduct" on how apartment owners [...]

15February, 2024

What the New Strata Laws on Apartments Mean For You

15 FEBRUARY 2024 NSW, Victoria and Queensland are reviewing their unit regulations, but it's still up to owners to take action against dodgy contracts. Truly independent representation of apartment owners is offered only by the Owners Corporation Network in NSW and the Unit Owners Association of Queensland. Read full article:> https://www.afr.com/wealth/personal-finance/what-the-new-strata-laws-on-apartments-mean-for-you-20240214-p5f4qu Related content:> https://ocn.org.au/confidence-is-waning-new-strata-commissioners-urgent-task-to-support-high-rise-city/

7February, 2024

More e-bike fires – this time in Perth

7 FEBRUARY 2024 Last week, a fire occurred due to the charging of two lithium-ion e-bikes on a balcony. Nadia Mitsopoulos, Presenter of ABC Mornings Perth, spoke with Fred Tuckwell, Chair of OCN, regarding the incident. Listen to the interview:> https://ocn.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2024/02/Radio-ABC-Perth-Mornings-Fred-Tuckwell-talking-about-e-bikes-and-e-scooters.mp3 Read related article:> https://ocn.org.au/owners-corporation-network-proposes-new-e-bike-e-scooter-rules/

5February, 2024

‘You can’t get out the window if you’re on the 20th floor’: Buildings act on risky e-bikes

5 FEBRUARY 2024 Sydney apartment owners are moving to ban or restrict electric bicycles and scooters in their buildings after a growing spate of battery blazes, undermining the state’s sustainability policies to encourage active transport. The Owners Corporation Network of Australia, which represents the owners and residents of strata properties such as apartment blocks, townhouses and villas, will be launching its model bylaw later this month. The organisation’s chair, Fred [...]

5February, 2024

North Sydney Strata Controversial Move Banning e-bikes and e-scooters

5 FEBRUARY 2024 In a big shock to strata residents, a North Sydney apartment block has banned electric bikes and scooters with fears their lithium-ion batteries could ignite deadly fires. The devices have been blamed for eight blazes across the state in just the last month. Watch Channel 7 News segment:> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9o0d4OR3-dg Related content:>  https://ocn.org.au/strata-committees-re-think-risky-e-bikes/

3February, 2024

Philip has been waiting 10 years for strata to fix a leak in his apartment

3 FEBRUARY 2024 For a decade Philip Baigent endured water pooling on his balcony and leaking into his flat, warping the floorboards and causing mould. Karen Stiles, the executive director of the Owners’ Corporation Network of Australia, says governments set up strata as a housing model, but “don’t support it in any way”. “For example, owners’ corporations are not eligible for disaster relief because that’s only available to individuals and [...]

2February, 2024

‘Confidence is waning’: New strata commissioner’s urgent task to support high-rise city

2 FEBRUARY 2024 A plan to build millions of apartments across Sydney will falter without major changes to the laws underpinning ownership and management of the properties, the state’s new strata commissioner warns. “The whole issue around housing supply, around affordability, and ultimately social and economic wellbeing, requires strata to be successful and requires people to have confidence in strata, and I guess the concern is there are areas where [...]

22January, 2024

OCN talks Lithium-ion battery fire risk with ABC Newcastle’s Paul Turton

Following another e-bike fire last week, this time in Bondi, thankfully no one was injured – but the risks are high for devices that have been modified or use incorrect chargers.  Fred Tuckwell, Chair, OCN spoke this morning with Paul Turton Listen to the interview:>https://ocn.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2024/01/2024_01_22-ABC-NEWCASTLE-interview-with-FT-Apartment-fires-ABC.mp3  Related article https://ocn.org.au/e-bike-fire-risk-expert-webinar/

17January, 2024

Chinese developer ordered to fix defects in 900 apartment complex

17 JANUARY 2024 People who bought into the Lachlan’s Line apartment complex in Sydney’s North were promised a “prestigious new community”. Now they’ve discovered the basement floors in all four blocks are at risk of collapse. Karen Stiles, executive director of the advocacy group Owners Corporation Network welcomed the order which follows increased scrutiny of apartment developments.  The Macquarie Park apartment’s car parks on the basement level are at risk [...]

10January, 2024

Owners Corporation Network proposes new e-bike, e-scooter rules to reduce fire risk in apartments

Owners of e-bikes or e-scooters will not be allowed to charge their batteries inside their apartments under rules developed for strata schemes concerned about fire risk. OCN has drafted a model by-law on the management of e-bikes and e-scooters after a series of fires sparked by lithium-ion batteries.  Read the full article published on the ABC website here You can also listen to the ABC Morning Show interview here Related [...]


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