Buying a Strata Property - Things you should know

If you are considering purchasing an Apartment or Strata Property (Villa, Unit, Townhouse) make sure you consider the following:

  • Is it still close to work, recreational or medical facilities that you currently enjoy and use?
  • Will you be further away from family and friends and will this have a detrimental affect on those relationships?
  • If planning a move to the City, will there be more noise than in suburbia; this is particularly pertinent if you are planning to move into an area that may be surrounded by hotels, nightclubs and restaurants.
  • What about noise issue with the Units on either side of you, or above you?
  • Establish the cost of Buying and Selling.
  • Is the Development and car park secure and well lit?
  • Will you have enough room for all your furniture? What about storage? Does it come with a car bay, do you need two?
  • Are most of the other residents owner/occupiers or tenants?
  • How much are the levies?

To assist you in understanding the terms used on this page, please refer to the sub menu "Common Strata Terms".

The process of buying a Strata Lot is no different to buying a Green Title property you just need to be aware that when purchasing a Strata Property you are buying into community living and as such there are additional rules and regulations you need to be aware of. The rules and regulations are commonsense and make allowances for the fact that you are living in a small (or large) community and that each owner needs to have consideration for others that live in the complex.

There are bylaws which apply to every Strata Scheme in WA and these form part of the Strata Titles Act. In some schemes the owners may have created their own rules and regulations in addition to the standard bylaws and these additional bylaws should be registered on the Strata Plan.

When buying a strata lot you must be provided with a Strata Disclosure prior to signing the Offer and Acceptance Contract. Make sure you read the information you are provided so that you understand exactly what you are purchasing and if in doubt seek advice before you sign the Disclosure and the Offer and Acceptance Contract. 

The Form 28 Strata Disclosure will include the following:

  • Form 29
  • Copy of the Strata Plan on which will be highlighted the unit entitlement and the Lot you are purchasing. Have a look at whether the garden, courtyard, carport etc form part of the Lot or are they common property. If you are not sure seek advice from your conveyancer who can help you identify what you are buying.
  • Copy of the standard bylaws which apply to every Strata Scheme in WA, these are the rules and regulations of strata living. Read them carefully and if you have any queries, seek advice.
  • Copy of any bylaws that are registered on the Strata Plan, these will be in addition to, or replace, some of the standard bylaws. Read them carefully and if you have any queries, seek advice.
  • If buying the property from the original proprietor e.g. the Developer you will be provided with additional information including:
    • Details of any agreements for provision of services etc e.g. the appointment a Strata Manager.
    • Details of the proposed budget including the estimated levies payable for your Lot.
    • Details of any proposed exclusive use or special privileges e.g. one Lot owner may be entitled to use the roof garden to the exclusion of others in the Scheme.

Read all the information carefully and seek advice if you are unsure about any information you receive, by doing so you can make an informed decision about whether or not Strata living is for you.