What are my rights as a tenant to contact the strata manager? – Madeleine, NSW

I have been advised by the strata management in the building in which I have just commenced as a tenant, that I cannot communicate directly to them, and must go through my realtor. My Property Manager has advised me that this is incorrect, and that it’s my right as a tenant to speak with strata. I had a quick question I needed a fast turn around on, so I tried communicating again with strata with this knowledge. They refused again, even when I pressed the point I have the right to talk to them. What are my legal rights to contact the strata manager? I just want to maintain and settle into the property with reasonable access to resources and not have to go 15 rounds with different people to get something done.

– Madeleine, NSW

When you move into a strata property as a tenant, you have the right to be heard by your strata manager. You may attend general meetings but you may not be allowed to participate in the discussion or share your concerns and suggestions unless invited to do so by your committee. Only owners can participate and vote on strata matters. You should speak with your landlord/property owner and get their view first.

You should familiarise yourself with your property by-laws – many of the strata matters are clarified in them.

Your property manager is responsible for completing a tenancy notice within 14 days of the new lease being signed. The landlord then provides this to the strata committee and the new tenant is then registered on the strata roll. If you are not registered on the strata roll, you cannot be communicated directly with and should contact the property management, who may contact strata management on your behalf.

For further information on your rights as a tenant to participate in the strata scheme visit Fair Trading NSW.