If you have ever considered purchasing a residential apartment or unit, or commercial property, you may not have known that overseeing the property is a corporation known as an Owners Corporation (the “OC”).

An OC, previously known as body corporate, oversee the common areas of said property. Governed under the Owners Corporations Act 2006 (the “Act”), the Act details the duties and powers of OC’s.

If you have purchased property governed by an OC, you as the purchaser become a member of the OC automatically. Through this, you acquire financial and legal responsibilities to the OC. These financial and legal obligations are outlined in an Owners Corporation Certificate (the “Certificate”).

Where would I find my Certificate?

In Victoria, when buying into property administrated by an OC, as part of a Section 32 statement of contract of sale, an OC certificate is required to be attached.

The certificate, located in the vendor’s statement for a contract of sale, intends to set out details of the scheme for a possible purchaser.

What does the Certificate contain?

The certificate is a disclosure of OC matters for prospective purchasers including (but not limited to) the following information:

  • Current fees for the lot (quarterly or annually);
  • Stipulations of fees including paid and unpaid fees or charges;
  • Maintenance work; and
  • Details of insurance coverage.

The certificate should also include information about current contractual relations between the governing OC and any other party, whether short or long term.

Alongside the certificate, the following should also be attached:

  • OC Rules;
  • Resolutions made at the last Annual General Meeting (AGM);
  • Statements of Advice and Information; and
  • Reference to further information being available on the OC register.
Can I request a Certificate?

You may request for a certificate in respect of the prospective lot you are looking to purchase. Please note that there may be a fee involved. The certificate should be supplied to you within 10 working days after the request.

It is pivotal that you are aware of your potential obligations prior to purchasing a property overseen by an OC. Should you have any questions concerning the above or a Section 32, please don’t hesitate and contact the Arro Property team today!