The ACT Government has introduced a suite of reforms which will benefit Canberrans that are living, buying into or running a business in mixed-use buildings.
The Managing Buildings Better reforms will overhaul how apartments, townhouses and mixed-use buildings are managed – clarifying responsibilities between residents and business owners.
As Canberra grows, Minister for Building Quality Improvement, Gordon Ramsay, said that more and more people are choosing to live in mixed-use developments in their town centres.
“As people are making this choice, the Government has been listening to feedback on what regulatory measures could be put in place to make it fairer and easier for businesses and residents to manage their buildings,” he detailed.
The series of reforms will include more accurately splitting utility costs between businesses and households in shared buildings, which should result in lower bills for many residents.
“The current legislation needs to be updated to keep pace with our growing city and the proposed changes will support great outcomes for people and businesses,” Minister Ramsay said.
“The Government has been working with a consultative group of industry and community stakeholders to prioritise reforms that will have the most direct and immediate impact.”
The reforms build on the Government’s commitment to improving Canberra’s building and planning system as the city continues to grow.
Minister for Planning and Land Management, Mick Gentleman, added that the Government is making these Managing Buildings Better improvements now to ensure that Canberrans can confidently and fairly live, work and do business together in mixed-use developments.
“Off-the-plan buyers will receive more information upfront and throughout construction and we’re improving how owners’ corporations operate to make buying and living in apartments better,” he shared.
“These reforms will complement our 2018 Planning Strategy, which sets a vision for a compact and efficient Canberra.”
An initial package of reforms to be introduced to the Assembly later in 2019 will:
- Allow owners corporations to tailor the way they manage their buildings;
- Inform consumers upfront about their rights and responsibilities when purchasing off plan;
- Allow a fairer and more equitable distribution of building costs;
- Modernise the administrative processes used for owners’ corporations;
- Modify rules for owners keeping pets in their apartments and townhouses.
More information on the proposed reforms will be announced over the coming months.