Press Release

EMBARGOED UNTIL July 08, 2018 09:00 AM

ANDREWS GOVERNMENT CALLED ON TO IMPLEMENT SHORT STAY LAWS AND GIVE OWNERS THE POWER TO RECOVER COST

Melbourne -

The peak body for Victoria’s $390 billion (billion) strata sector says the Andrews Government must intervene and legislate against so called “party houses” which are turning some investment properties into “nightmares” for Victorians.

Dubbed ‘party houses’, Victorian short term rentals have been exposed to several wild parties just this year, with a trail of destruction and five figure damage bills left behind for unsuspecting owners to pick up.

And in an effort to see the same fate avoided for Melbourne’s biggest high rise apartments, property leaders say it must trigger the implementation of a Short Stay Accommodation Bill.

Just this weekend another horror story hit the headlines after a $3.5 million Hawthorn East home was trashed by 50 youths who rented out the home to hold a social gathering that spiralled out-of-control, leaving the owner with a hefty repair bill.

SCA (Vic) is the peak industry body for Strata Title Management in Victoria and General Manager Rob Beck says the financial impact of this issue is devastating for owners, and the State Government must expedite new laws giving them the power to recover costs.

“Victorian short stay bookings continue to accommodate guests looking to use homes as “party houses” and we want to see laws in place that help owners recover costs in these cases.”

“We have been consulting on the Short Stay Bill since 2016, and the longer regulations are held back, the greater the impact will be on strata communities, who make up the lion share of Melbourne and Victoria’s short stay market.

Mr Beck says it’s a minor miracle that no high rises in Melbourne have been affected by this issue as yet, and SCA (Vic) warns that similar incidents in strata communities could be the worst yet.

“The incidents we’ve seen in suburban homes have been devastating enough, but the fallout from something like this happening in a residential apartment block would be on another level entirely.”

“Melbourne’s biggest high rises can accommodate well over 100 people and the path of destruction that would befall a strata scheme due to elevators, hallways, lobby areas and car parks all being exposed to this kind of damage would be financially crippling.”

Mr Beck says the short-stay accommodation reforms include changes allowing strata schemes to impose a range of insurance levies, to account for increased guest numbers on-site, but the big-ticket item is the ability of schemes to pursue compensation orders for damage to property and amenities.

“Victorian strata schemes are not getting enough support and compensation for misbehaviour, which stands to leave them left with thousands’ of dollars’ worth of damage from guests.”

“Many apartment owners often wear the costs of damage caused by short-term rental guests, and have a tough time recovering these costs, but that cannot happen moving forward.”

Mr Beck says it’s not about stopping short stays at all, just making them a fairer environment for strata communities.

“What we seek is a balance between owners being able to do what they want within their properties, and strata schemes being protected on an insurance and costs recovery level when damage is sustained to common property.”

“Reforms to the short stay market are well overdue, and whilst only a fraction of Victorian owners are actively hosting guests, these guests have the potential to impact on the majority of Victorians, so we’re asking for the Andrews Government to swiftly introduce new laws.”

Key Facts and Figures

“Reforms to the short stay market are well overdue, and whilst only a fraction of Victorian owners are actively hosting guests, these guests have the potential to impact on the majority of Victorians, so we’re asking for the Andrews Government to swiftly introduce new laws.”

About

SCA (Vic) is the peak industry body for Strata Title Management in Victoria. Supporting more than 80% of all owners corporation management firms, it is the only organisation solely focused upon representing this increasingly significant industry, and reaches and represents more than 600 owners corporation professionals who manage approximately 375,000 lots.
It also represents industry suppliers and owners corporations, making it the voice of all with an interest in the management of owners corporations. Members benefit from representation, promotion, establishment of professional practice guidelines and ethical standards, and professional development through education seminars, conferences and regularly publishing bulletins on items of professional interest. Website: http://vic.strata.community

(ENDS)

Contact Details

Pat McGuire
Marketplace Communications
0412 748161
Patrick.mcguire@mpc.com.au

Disclaimer: ConnectWeb and AAP Directories, a division of Australian Associated Press are not responsible for the content of this Media Release

Attachments