Many lot owners wish to prevent the spread of the short stay accommodation boom into their strata scheme. This sentiment is understandable; residents wish to preserve the residential character of their scheme and ensure that they don’t end up living in a pseudo motel complex.
The question becomes, what can be done? One solution is the making of custom by-laws that prevent lots from being used for short stay accommodation purposes without the consent of the body corporate. In the event of breach, the body corporate can take steps to enforce the by-law.
Under the Strata Titles Act 1998, provided that certain requirements can be met, a body corporate can make a by-law of this nature. Care is required when preparing the by-law; it cannot be drafted in terms that are objectively unreasonable, discriminatory, or adversely affect the health, welfare or safety of any person. In addition, the body corporate must be satisfied that the by-law is necessary to preserve the character of the relevant strata scheme.
Particular care must be taken to ensure that the concept of ‘short stay accommodation’ is properly defined in the by-law to avoid accidentally regulating perfectly reasonable and common activities such as a lot owner’s friends and family using a lot for no financial gain.
Bodies corporate in Tasmania have made and registered by-laws regulating short stay accommodation. To date, none of these by-laws have been successfully challenged.
If you wish to investigate the making of a short stay accommodation by-law for your strata scheme, please contact:
M: 0407 205 719
M: 0427 183 217
Published: 19 February 2020