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What are body corporate services?

Body corporate management is a property management style that accommodates all unit and apartment owners. As a unit owner, you automatically become a member of the body corporate. The body corporate, known as the owners corporation management, is responsible for a range of management, financial and administrative services regarding the common areas. Thus, all unit owners have to be a part of the decision-making process. The unit owners delegate the decision-making process to a body corporate manager. However, this only eases the management duties but does not affect their collective property rights. Body corporate compliments the strata management systems by making it easy to manage the apartments.

Body corporate decisions

Most day-to-day decisions of the body corporate or resolutions can be made by a body corporate committee or with the agreement of 50% or more of the unit owners. In special resolutions, the body corporate will require 75% or more of the unit owners. Special resolutions are only made when the decision has a significant effect on the unit owners. Examples include increasing levies and incurring debts. The other form of resolution is called designated resolutions. Following the passing of such a decision, official communication has to be made by the body corporate. It is made to all unit owners, and anyone opposing will be forced to object within 28 days.

For a body corporate to function flawlessly, there needs to be laws and regulations that guide their operation. The rules and regulations are specifically focused on ensuring the common property are well managed and in a perfect state at all times. For the smooth running of management tasks, all unit owners are expected to contribute a corporation fee. The body corporate manager is accountable to the committee on the usage of the corporation fee. Therefore, the fee should only be directed towards the community property maintenance practices. Running administrative tasks also needs funding. Therefore, the remaining part of the corporation fee can be directed towards this functions.

The corporation fee is not enough for the management of the body corporations. The other contributions made by the unit owners include a special levy fund and a sinking fund. It is inevitable to avoid accumulating debts when managing the body corporate; thus, a special levy fund was formulated to service these debts that were not budgeted for. On the other hand, a sinking fund, or a special purpose fund, can be used for capital investments to give returns soon.

Involving all unit owners or leaving only the body corporate manager to be in charge of the decision-making can be pretty challenging. Therefore, appoint a body corporate committee is the right solution. The committee is integral to the daily management of the body corporate. It is involved in deciding on behalf of the body corporate. Some of the vital decisions that are mandated to the committee include building maintenance, common property improvement, enforcing the adherence to body corporate by-laws to all unit owners. The body corporate committee compromises the chairperson, treasurer, strata manager and members.

Functions of body corporate

Together with the unit owners, the volunteered body corporate manager is expected to enforce the following functions.

  • On behalf of the owners, it maintains, manages, and regulates the common property.
  • He or she determines the sums that the owners must pay for the body corporate to function.
  • Establish and enforce its own set of regulations, known as by-laws, that spell out what owners and other scheme residents are allowed to do and what they are not allowed to do.
  • They obtain insurance on behalf of owners, such as public liability and building insurance.
  • Oversees and maintains the assets of the corporate body.
  • They maintain minutes of meetings, owner information, financial statements, and asset registrations, owner upgrades to common property, engagements, and authorizations for the body corporate.