News Round-up - January 2024

31 January 2024

Drive Electric State of the Nation Report 

1 November 2023 - Drive Electric

Drive Electric has kindly consented to BCCG sharing their State of the Nation report with our members. 

The report explores the current state of all sectors of the electric transport ecosystem in New Zealand, and provides an overview of the steps that Government, industry and consumers need to take to embrace the benefits of EVs and meet our climate obligations.

Read the Full Report ...

Unit Title Services Website 

12 December 2023 - MBIE

The Unit Title Services website is well worth visiting from time to time. Resources which are useful to BCCG member are regularly updated and uploaded to the UTS website, recent additions include:

  1. Pre-contract disclosure statement and Pre-settlement disclosure statement flowcharts
  2. Disclosure statements example scenarios with visual timelines
  3. The Guide to Pre-disclosure
  4. The Short guide to Unit Titles
The resources above (1-3) can be found on the Unit Title website on the ‘Information for prospective buyers’ page;click here. 
The Short Guide to Unit Titles resource can be found on the Unit Title website under the ‘Forms and resources’ page; click here.

    This one page flyer, What you need to know about unit title properties and bodies corporate, is also a useful resource for first time apartment owners.  

    Guidance for Flood Damaged Buildings

    21 December 2023 - MBIE

    The Building Performance team at MBIE has published updated guidance covering the repair and replacement of plasterboard following a flooding event, and how building consent authorities can apply a discretionary exemption for flood damaged properties including multi unit properties. 

    The information applies to newer homes that have been built in accordance with the current Building Code. For older homes with types of construction no longer used, such as lathe and plaster, requiring substantial repairs, consider consulting a designer, engineer or a builder who is a Licenced Building Practitioner (LBP) before you remove or replace plasterboard.

    From this page Updated guidance for remediation work in flood damaged buildings you can access info and links to other documents including:

    Repair and replacement of plasterboard due to flooding

    How to Party Without Being an Animal 

    21 December 2023 – Australian Financial Review 

    These are the five things that will drive your neighbours nuts – what you can do to avoid them.

    Every Christmas and New Year party season, we remind apartment residents about the steps you can take to have a great time without ruining everyone else’s “peaceful enjoyment” of their homes.

    And every year we find life around apartments has evolved a little – in different ways and to varying extents. So it’s up to you or your tenants to think about what your idea of fun means to the Brady Bunch grid of neighbours above, below and to the sides of your units.

    What’s different this year? Thanks to changes in laws and attitudes, there are probably more pets in apartments than ever. There may also be more restrictions on what is considered antisocial behaviour with, for instance, smoke drift from balconies being targeted by by-laws and tribunal claims.

    Also, with COVID-19 a distant memory, Airbnb and similar short-term holiday letting (STHL) platforms will be ramping up again at this, their most lucrative time of year. One of the problems with STHL guests is that they don’t know your by-laws and care even less. But for them – and for you – there is little in the way of instant justice in strata. There are no strata cops to came racing around to enforce the rules. However, if your or your guests’ misbehaviour crosses the line, don’t assume your neighbours will file it under to “be forgot, for the sake of auld lang syne”. In strata, the possibility of payback is always just around the corner.

    So here are a few festive tips to keep yourself, your family and your friends on the right side of the naughty ledger.

    1. Smoking: Many strata schemes now have smoke drift by-laws which, apart from anything else, mean there may be dozens of eagle eyes watching for smouldering cigarette ends being flicked from balconies. Provide ashtrays and tell your friends to behave.

    2. Pets: The increasingly liberal pet by-laws that have come through in the last year or two apply to residents’ pets, not guests’ fur babies. If you have hyper vigilant anti-pet residents in your block, ask your friends to leave their pooches at home. Also, remember that your own pets may be alarmed by strangers and terrified of fireworks, so make sure they have a safe place to run to and hide when things kick off.

    3. Barbecues: There are few culinary experiences better than a freshly grilled fish fillet on a taco; there are few food fails worse than coming home to find your apartment stinking from the smoke and smell of burnt prawns and cheap burgers from below. Clean your barbie with a wire brush, soap and water before you fire it up. Burning off the fat from your last BBQ is a crime against cuisine and community.

    4. Kids: Every apartment block – in fact, every apartment – has a different level of sound insulation in its flooring. So don’t let kids charge around like they would if they were in a house. Also, if your building has a by-law that says kids can’t play in common areas unsupervised (or at all), assume it’s there for a good reason. If you think the rule is stupid, the time to challenge it is at your next annual general meeting, not Christmas Eve.

    5. Parking: Most buildings have limited visitor parking; some even charge a fee for booking spaces on high usage evenings. Find out what the chances are of your party guests having trouble finding a car space and plan accordingly. Also, be aware of road closures and public transport changes that might make it tricky for your guests to get home.

    Finally, have a great festive season, be nice to your neighbours and good to yourself.

    EV charging in Apartment Buildings – examples of the Australian experience

    23 December 2023 – Strata Communities Association

    The following articles were recently re-published by Strata Communities Association, Australia.  They highlight two of the challenges we too are facing in this country

    The headlines of the articles and their original publications are:

    • The hidden threat of EVs in older apartment buildings - republished from the Australian Financial Review, and
    • What Aussies will pay to have EV charging points in multi-unit developments – republished from the Herald Sun.  

    Download this PDF to read both articles.

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