OCN in the Media

OCN in the Media2022-08-10T09:20:54+10:00
17April, 2019

Opal Tower Tenancy Chaos Leads to Calls for NSW Help

17 APRIL 2019 Owners, tenants and industry lobby grops are calling for the NSW government to step up efforts to resolve tenancy chaos at Sydney's troubled Opal Tower. The government, which also owns more than 40 apartments in the tower, should take a bigger lead in clarifying tenancy issues both as a stakeholder and as a statutory body instead of relying on Fair Trading NSW and the NSW Civil & [...]

10April, 2019

32 Canberra construction sites shut down

10 APRIL 2019 The ACT government has temporarily shut down 32 construction sites in the past three months, as part of a renewed crackdown on dodgy building work. Access Canberra's building regulators have also inspected 180 sites since the start of the year, as it attempts to shake a widely-held perception that it's failed to respond to the problems plaguing Canberra's construction sector. Release of the figures comes as the [...]

11March, 2019

Advocates accuse NSW government of failing to help apartment owners affected by flammable cladding

12 MARCH 2019 Residents at high risk from potentially deadly flammable cladding are being denied information about what they should do to make their buildings safe, consumer advocates claim. Instead, say apartment residents, they are being threatened with huge fines for doing nothing, while owners in some blocks have been told it could cost more than $50,000 per unit to fix the problem. “This decision is bewildering,” says Phil Gall, [...]

7March, 2019

What’s in the Lacrosse VCAT judgement for owners of defective apartments and policy makers?

7 MARCH 2019 Despite the wailing of design consultants about the implications of the Lacrosse judgement and the Opal Tower engineering report, the importance of a viable Design and Construct constructor in these cases has proved critical to a way forward. The experiences and the processes that apartment owners have endured is unreasonable in a modern construction industry. It is evident that better design management skills, risk management and trustworthy [...]

6March, 2019

Cladding and cracking towers prompt call for royal commission

6 MARCH 2019 The Builders Collective of Australia, has called for a royal commission into the national industry in the wake of combustible cladding on residential towers and cracked concrete in Sydney's newly completed Opal Tower, citing failures within Australia’s residential construction sector.” Stephen Goddard, solicitor and spokesperson for owner advocacy group Owners Corporation Network of Australia, said he backed a royal commission but acknowledged new home buyers had been [...]

6March, 2019

Labor Promises Strata Commissioner to Tackle Defects

6 MARCH 2019 A dedicated Strata Commissioner to protect apartment owners and residents and restore confidence in the strata sector will be introduced by the Labor Party, should it win office at the upcoming state election. “A commissioner solely focussed on strata is long overdue,” says Phil Gall, chair of OCN, which is running a seminar on cladding issues on March 16 in Sydney. “Fair Trading is overloaded with concerns [...]

5March, 2019

NSW state election 2019: Labor to introduce strata commissioner if it is elected

5 MARCH 2019 A dedicated strata commissioner to protect apartment owners and residents against Opal Tower-style building defects will be introduced by Labor should it win office at this month’s state election. The opposition’s better regulation spokeswoman Yasmin Catley confirmed to Domain that Labor plans to create an office to oversee all strata issues, but with particular focus on defects in newly constructed buildings. “A commissioner solely focused on strata [...]

18February, 2019

Strata loophole leaves owners vulnerable even when NCAT is supposed to be on their side

18 FEBRUARY 2020 Every time Jan Newland leaves her apartment in a building on Sydney’s lower north shore, she checks the sky for signs of rain. And if there are darkening clouds, she pushes her lounge room furniture into the middle of the room, rolls up part of her carpet, puts down containers and hopes against hope it doesn’t rain. Newland has had leaks coming through her ceiling since work [...]

13February, 2019

Parliamentary Panic Behind Short-Term Letting U-turn

13 FEBRUARY 2019 Why talk with Alex Greenwich? Becasue his constituency has more high-rise apartments than any other in Australia. So this podcast is the first of two parts in which we discuss the strata issues of the day – Airbnb, cladding, defects … and pets. The highlight of the chat, for me, was his description of how a last-minute push by the Owners Corporation Network (and a few like-minded [...]

6February, 2019

Election Connection as OCN Faces the Big Issues for 2019

6 FEBRUARY 2019 Last year was huge for the Owners Corporation Network (OCN), the only significant body for apartment owners, run by apartment owners. Most notably, they were hugely instrumental in turning what would have been potentially the worst short-term holiday letting (STHL) laws in the country into what could well be the very best. But it’s a new year and that means new challenges, not least the Opal Tower [...]

3February, 2019

Unit owners punished for driving ACT’s economic growth: strata boss

03 FEBRUARY 2020 Canberra apartment owners are being punished for helping drive the ACT's economic growth as the territory government "robs Peter to pay Paul" by increasing rates, according to the leader of the ACT's peak strata body. Strata Community Association ACT president Chris Miller made those comments after the territory government revealed it had no immediate plans to overhaul its rating system, despite calls from a bipartisan Legislative Assembly [...]

21January, 2019

ACT government ‘ignores’ call to ease rates pressure on unit owners

21 JANUARY 2019 The ACT government has ignored calls to immediately overhaul the city's ratings system to help ease the burden of rising rates on Canberra's apartment owners, owners say, but it will review the system in the next two years. The government has promised to publicly review the system and is considering whether any such changes may be needed in either the 2019-20 or 2020-21 budget, and intends to [...]

9January, 2019

Opal Tower failure reveals “broken system”

9 JANUARY 2019 Sydney’s Opal Tower has dominated headlines after cracks appeared along a concrete wall in the 38-storey Homebush building in Olympic Park on Christmas Eve. Building defects aren’t unusual in Australian construction, but what the crumbling Opal Tower highlights is the vulnerability of builders and subcontractors of defective buildings and the lack of protections for consumers who buy them. "This is a David-and-Goliath fight no owner expects, or [...]

4January, 2019

Baptism of Fire: Opal Tower’s Challenge For Newly Formed Owners Corporation

04 JANUARY 2019 Residents of Opal Tower heard the unwelcome news on Friday that the NSW government-appointed engineers needed more time before they would approve any repair – and hence a return – to the building. In a statement referring "design and construction issues that require further investigation", engineers Mark Hoffman and John Carter said it could take another week before they were in a position to say more. It's [...]



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