Rules requiring tenants give three days notice before moving in and attend an induction have been given the nod in a recent legal hearing with ramifications for short-term stay rentals.
The rules, as well as extra charges for owners in the building who overuse the induction process, were given the all clear at a recent Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal hearing.
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In a decision handed down in December last year, VCAT senior member A Vassie dismissed an Imperial, Doncaster apartment owner’s claims such rules discriminated against him.
While a rule banning short-stay rentals of less than three months had been acknowledged as “probably invalid” before the VCAT hearing was resolved, the Imperial owners corporation chairman Tony Mosca said he believed the other rules would give them some control.
“An owners corporation can’t stop Airbnb,” Mr Mosca said.
“What we can do is put in rules so that people can’t come and go willy nilly, without knowing who is in the building.
“It’s a de facto mechanism that means we can control who comes and goes.”
The effect was owners in the building would find it difficult to adhere to the building’s rules and operate short-term stay rentals.
In addition, a requirement that prospective owners would pay an extra $100 for any extra inductions beyond two in a year — and a $300 fee if they required an induction outside of business hours — was upheld, making short-term leasing less financially viable.
Strata Community Australia Victorian boss Rob Beck said it was a welcome update to the legal landscape for owners corporations, particularly with relation to short-term stays.
“We’d welcome interpretations that help owners corporations govern and keep the peace between owners and tenants,” Mr Beck said.
“There have been other attempts where they (an owners corporation) have, for example, tried to instigate charges for gyms and pools, and they have been thrown out as unlawful.”