OCN in the Media

OCN in the Media2022-08-10T09:20:54+10:00
26July, 2022

David Chandler Resigns as NSW Building Commissioner

The building regulation environment in NSW is in for a shake-up following the resignation of respected NSW Building Commissioner DAVID Chandler. Chandler will finish his role in November after just over three years.  No public announcement was issued. Karen Stiles, Executive Director of the Owners Corporation Network, expressed shock at the news and praised Chandler’s contribution. “It was a sad day for NSW apartment purchasers and industry alike when NSW Building [...]

25July, 2022

NSW Building Commissioner David Chandler Resigns

25 JULY 2022 NSW’s first building commissioner, David Chandler, has quit the role three years after former Liberal premier Gladys Berejiklian appointed him to lift the standards of the state’s beleaguered construction industry. Owners Corporation Network executive officer Karen Stiles said Chandler was respected and had “led massive reforms during his tenure in an attempt to restore consumer confidence”. She said the news of his departure was “terribly sad”. “NSW [...]

13July, 2022

‘Just like The Castle’: The apartment owners under siege in their own buildings

13 JULY 2022 Apartment owners claim they’re under siege from telcos determined to install broadband services in their buildings – whether residents want them or not.  And they say they’re being forced to hire lawyers to try to stop them and protect their common property from potential damage caused by subcontractors when companies bully their way in. “This shouldn’t be allowed,” said Karen Stiles, executive officer of the apartment owners’ [...]

13July, 2022

Telcos Bully Way into Apartment Buildings

13 JULY 2022 An emerging issue is that of smaller telecommunications providers muscling their way into apartment buildings to instal their equipment.  Karen Stiles talks to Raf Epstein.   Listen:> ABC Drive with Rafael Epstein

3July, 2022

Show me your stars: Apartment buyers start pulling deposits after new rating system

3 JULY 2022 Apartment hunters have pulled deposits and are switching to builders and developers who have earned gold star ratings on a new ratings platform, says NSW building commissioner David Chandler. Since the Independent Construction Industry Rating Tool (iCIRT) register was launched in May, including the first 19 companies rated as trustworthy, four families told Chandler they had withdrawn deposits from unrated builders and developers and taken their business [...]

27June, 2022

NSW State Government launches inquiry into Embedded Networks

27 JUNE 2022 State Government launches inquiry into Embedded Networks in apartments in NSW and their effect on residents and businesses. OCN encouraged owners with a poor experience in terms of lock in or expensive contracts to have their say. Watch clip from Channel 10 News        

21May, 2022

Out of Court Settlement Reached Over Opal Towers

21 May 2021 According to Karen Stiles, executive director of apartment owners peak group Owners Corporation Network, the long-running case had exposed more than the cracks in the Opal Tower. “It was really the start of the turning point where the government had to admit we had a problem with rampant building defects in residential towers and actually had to do something to address it,” she said. Read more:> HERE

12May, 2022

Charger guide helps NSW buildings get electric vehicle ready

More electric vehicle drivers can soon charge up at home and work, with a step-by-step guide released by the NSW Government, and a pilot site providing proof of concept for EV-ready buildings. The EV Ready Buildings materials and webinar registration details are available on the Drive electric NSW EV ready buildings webinar webpage. Speakers at the webinar include the EV Council Head of Energy and Infrastructure, Ross de Rango, and Owners [...]

13April, 2022

Hundreds of buildings with cladding deemed low priority despite possible ‘unacceptable fire risk’

The state government taskforce into dangerous flammable cladding has deemed more than 500 buildings a low priority, despite their facades potentially posing unacceptable fire risks. NSW Auditor-General Margaret Crawford made the finding in a review of reforms targeting unsafe cladding since the material supercharged London’s deadly Grenfell Tower fire tragedy in 2017. Crawford said identification of buildings in the immediate aftermath was hampered by a lack of building records, but [...]

8February, 2022

Sydney Apartment Investors Fear Debt Trap As Levies Skyrocket

Investors from retirees to single mothers on low incomes fear losing their properties after their strata levies jumped from under $2000 per quarter to more than $10,000 for building repairs they had no say in approving. Bright and Duggan told the Herald it was appointed to do work that the owners’ corporation had “failed to undertake over many years with the highest priority of ensuring the building can be safely occupied”. Executive [...]

27January, 2022

Smoking on the balcony of an apartment declared a ‘hazard’

A Queensland regulator has banned a Surfers Paradise woman from smoking on her apartment balcony after a neighbour’s complaint, declaring it to be a “hazard” rather than a “nuisance”, in a move that could allow bodies corporate to outlaw smoking completely. “If you live with the urban myth that strata title is like a title to land, you are only encouraging ongoing conflict,” Mr Goddard, a spokesman for the Owners [...]

20January, 2022

Queensland unit dwellers could be barred from smoking on balconies after landmark decision

20 JANUARY 2022 OCN talks to Dee Dee at 3AW about the news that Queenslanders living in apartments could be prevented from smoking on their balconies after a "game changing" decision to ban one unit owner from doing so after a complaint from an upstairs neighbour. The Office of the Commissioner for Body Corporate and Community Management's adjudicator ordered that the eighth-floor owner must no longer smoke tobacco products on [...]

18December, 2021

Sydney Apartment Building Under Stop Work Order Due to Safety Concerns – Channel 7 News

18 December 2021 Owners of a landmark apartment block in Sydney’s eastern suburbs face a long wait before they can move in after the NSW building watchdog ordered an immediate halt to their almost complete $50 million redevelopment. The watchdog has handed the owners of Skye, which overlooks Tamarama Beach, a stop-work notice and an order preventing them from moving in because fire sprinklers were not installed in seven of [...]

23October, 2021

NSW apartments: New defects insurance scheme to protect off-the-plan buyers

23 October 2021 Dodgy developers and bad builders who construct shoddy apartment towers that can lead to heartbreak and financial ruin for home-buyers are set to be driven out of NSW with a ground-breaking new defects insurance scheme. The DLI advisory panel comprises insurance experts, developers, financiers, strata bodies and the apartments consumer representative, the Owners Corporation Network (OCN). OCN executive officer Karen Stiles said members were excited by the [...]

22October, 2021

NSW a trailblazer in ‘outing’ apartment defects

22 October 2021 You’d be forgiven for thinking high-rise apartment blocks are crumbling like soggy Tim Tams all over NSW while the rest of Australia’s unit blocks are pristine monuments to better building practises. But, bad as things are in Sydney, it may look worse there than anywhere else because issues have been exposed and are being addressed. In NSW, the Owners Corporation Network has plugged away on the defects front for [...]

17October, 2021

Building defects in strata units robbing buyer’s future

17 October 2021 Stephen Goddard, spokesperson for the Owners Corporation Network, discuss his recent SMH opinion piece about the dangers of building defects in residential strata schemes with Michael McLaren on Overnight with Michael McLaren. Mr Goddard wrote, ‘For some time now it has been a self-evident truth that new residential strata schemes can be plagued with building defects which are left for a new owners’ corporation to fix.’ ‘The [...]

15October, 2021

Building defects in strata units: unstoppable force meets immovable object

15 October 2021 An owner in a new apartment tower at Canterbury said yesterday: “We took a risk buying into a new apartment, but we didn’t realise it would be this kind of risk.” The alleged risk in question is the possible need to evacuate due to structural instability. For some time now it has been a self-evident truth that new residential strata schemes can be plagued with building defects [...]

11October, 2021

Four in 10 new apartment buildings have major defects: NSW Building Commissioner

11 October 2021 Almost four in 10 new apartment buildings in NSW have serious defects, costing an average $331,829 per building to fix, a new survey has found, although resolutions are rare. The Owners Corporation Network, which represents apartment owners, welcomed the survey results. “As the peak body for residential strata owners, the Owners Corporation Network strongly supports research into the incidence and impacts of serious defects,” said chief executive [...]



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