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May/Jun 2019 Issue
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Best Practices on Strata Living in Singapore
Strata Living in Singapore

Living in strata-titled properties like apartments and condominiums gives residents access to common facilities such as swimming pools, tennis courts, and barbecue pits. But who is responsible for the maintenance of these facilities?

Answers can be found in the Building Maintenance and Strata Management Act (BMSMA), which regulates the management and maintenance of strata-titled properties.

To give clarity to management corporations (MCs), strata owners, and other stakeholders on their roles and responsibilities under the BMSMA, the Building and Construction Authority (BCA) is now developing a series of Strata Management Guides (“Guides”) in collaboration with various stakeholders.

The Guides aim to share best practices on handling common matters in MCs as well as practical information for MCs in managing their estates, based on BCA’s regular engagement with stakeholders. Nonetheless, readers should refer to the appropriate legislation or seek independent legal advice on their rights and duties applicable to them.

Here are some of the best practices for MCs to better manage their properties:

#1 Prepare a comprehensive budget for anticipated major expenditures

MCs are encouraged to prepare a comprehensive budget and set aside sinking funds to cater for anticipated major expenditures such as large-scale paint jobs, re-roofing or major Additions & Alterations works on common property, on top of the cyclical maintenance and improvement works. MCs should review this budget regularly to include proposed improvement works or expenditures that they are made aware of over time.

#2 Develop guidelines or by-laws to handle disputes between neighbours

Besides the prescribed by-laws, all MCs should have guidelines or by-laws to handle possible disputes between residents, for example, on the use of common property. If residents encounter any disputes with their neighbours, they can:

  • approach their neighbour and let him/her know of their concerns;
  • write in to their MC or managing agent to request for help;
  • write to their MC to table the matter at any upcoming general meeting for residents to discuss and decide how it should be best managed.

#3 Capture important decisions when recording minutes of general meetings

The secretary of the MC should ensure that meeting minutes capture the number of votes casted for and against each motion, as well as the chairman’s declaration of the voting result. A brief explanation of the rationales for the decisions as well as any actions agreed to be taken pursuant to the motions is encouraged. The minutes of general meetings shall be displayed on the notice board of the MC within 45 days after the general meeting.

20 key topics will be addressed in the Guides. The first five guides, which contain information on strata management and common topics relating to general meetings, are now available here.