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Unit Titles Act unsophisticated

By Christine Nikiel

Friday 5th September 2003

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Property professionals are being targeted for a seminar to debate reviews of the Unit Titles Act (1972).

The seminar, in Auckland on September 16, follows a report by the Auckland Regional Council and law firm Glaistor Ennor, which demands urgent reviews to the Act.

The Act is not sophisticated enough to regulate the relationships and rights involved in common property ownership, the report says.

It suggests reforming legislation and rules to better reflect different development types such as high-rise apartments, terraced houses and commercial outlets. Other reforms include defining the job descriptions and performance standards of those involved in the administration of bodies corporate, providing better asset management systems and more accessible and effective ways to resolve disputes.

Body corporate disputes highlighted recently include a High Court judgement which ordered Auckland property manager Strata Title Administration (Strata) to pay $50,518 to one of its body corporates (NBR, August 29, 2003).

The body corporate group said Strata, run by Michael Chapman-Smith, withheld body corporate funds and refused to step down as body corporate secretary, claiming that technically it still held the position.

That judgment is expected to be followed by further legal action by other body corporates under Strata's management.

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