Wet wall systems are common in multi-storey residential building basements. If the water ismanaged as it reaches the ground by drains, then this is not a defect but merely operating as it is designed to do. If the water is not contained and spills out to an excess on to car spaces, then it is a defect.

The Owner’s Corporation is responsible for maintaining Common Property. Refer to our diagram showing Common and Lot Property: https://sdss.net.au/owners-corporations/

Common Property is all the areas of the land and buildings not included in any lot. It is jointly owned by all owners, and the Owners Corporation is responsible for its management.  The lot and common property will be defined on your individual strata plan. It typically includes car park, corridors, emergency stairs, common recreation areas, external walls of the building, windows, roof, etc. Refer to the drawing available at https://sdss.net.au/owners-corporations/for more information.

The initial maintenance schedule should be provided at handover by the builder/developer and sets out requirements in relation to the maintenance of the common property and it is the responsibility of the Owners Corporation to ensure all maintenance schedules are implemented and documented. It must also include an inspection schedule for things that are on common property and in regular use such as storm water pumps in the drainage pits, lifts, service areas.

A building defect is work undertaken by the builder that either has failed or is not in compliance with the Building Code of Australia and the Australian Standards. Further to this defective work can be due to faulty materials and/or workmanship whereby the item is not fit for its intended purpose.

Front doors are common property, they are a Fire Rated door and must close automatically. Front doors are typically the only exit from a unit and in if there is a fire or other emergency the occupants of the unit must be able to exit the unit quickly and safely. Any additional lock put on the front door could hinder or even stop occupants exiting in an emergency.

  • Waterproofing defects and water ingress.
  • Inadequate stormwater management in basements areas.
  • Tiling defects such as insufficient fall to drainage outlets causing water to pool on the tiled surface.
  • Defective window installation allowing water ingress.

Efflorescence is caused when soluble salts and other water dispersible materials come to the surface of concrete or mortar. As the water evaporates is leaves salt behind which forms as a white coating. It is generally considered a building defect, but it isn’t always. The cause of the efflorescence must be investigated so as to rule out any failed or missing flashings, damp proof courses or design issues that may be the cause, in which case it would be a building defect. However, if for example owners are over watering planter boxes then this can cause efflorescence but it is not a building defect and removal is a maintenance item.

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