News In Brief

Community title reforms on the way

The NSW Liberals & Nationals Government’s long term plan to deliver vital community title reforms will be fast-tracked to coincide with strata and sector-wide reforms for the building industry.

“Community title reforms will be accelerated as part of a broader package of reforms relating to multiple occupancy of buildings, strata, security of payments and home warranty insurance connected with the building industry,” minister for fair trading, Matthew Mason-Cox said.

“These reforms are interrelated and must be viewed collectively as we build on the strong reform foundations and achievements of the last three years. The government is now planning to release a Community Title Reform Position Paper to owners, residents and industry in the coming months.”

More than 25 per cent of the NSW population lives or works in strata and community title and research shows that by 2040, more than half Sydney’s housing stock will be multi-unit dwellings.

“The community consultation process by Fair Trading has been a great success and we will build on this process to create better reforms and opportunities to shape community title improvements across NSW,” Mr Mason-Cox said.

“We will give stakeholders every opportunity to work with us to refine the legislative amendments and ensure our reforms are well integrated across home building, strata, community title, home warranty and security of payment laws.”

Reforms delivered in the last three years include:
• Improving cash flow in the building industry through home building reforms that increased maximum deposits to 10 per cent and standardised progress payments;
• Defect management and accountability;
• Delivering a fairer payment system for builders and subcontractors working in the building industry. This includes amendments to ensure prompt payments for subcontractors within 30 days rather than long payment cycles of 90 days.

The reform package is expected to be progressed in the first half of 2015.

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