These are actual email conversations with 2 different strata management companies in Perth
Strata manager 1
CRASH: One of our commercial tenants has advised that a large amount of rubbish has been dumped at the front of the retail complex in the common area. I tried calling but was put on hold for quite some time and eventually had to hang up.
(2 days later)
Strata: Thank you for your email, unfortunately we cannot act on your email. Please write exactly the same thing on the attached form and send it through to us with photos.
CRASH: I’m assuming after 2 days it will either be a much bigger problem now as rubbish attracts rubbish, or an owner or tenant got fed up of the no action and just dealt with it themselves.
Strata: Thanks for your response, your comments have been noted and sent onto the Council of Owners for their attention.
Now I very much doubt the strata manager would have sent my comments back to the council of owners. No strata manager would want to point out to their employers that after 2 days of no action by them one of the occupants of this commercial complex had to resolve the issue themselves.
As a real estate agent we get very frustrated when strata managers ignore or refuse to do their jobs in a timely manner if at all. I assume owners are similarly frustrated.
Strata manager 2
Strata: Please find attached a threatening letter to the owner regarding the gardens in this unit.
Strata: Please note that the correspondence attached to my previous email was sent incorrectly due to the different lot numbers and addresses. Please disregard and refer to the correct document which I have attached to this email.
CRASH: According to the photos you sent with this threatening letter the gardens look fine. I was also at this property 2 days ago and the gardens were also good.
Strata: Please refer to the minutes of the last AGM.
CRASH: Thank you. I do not see any comments about this garden in the minutes either.
Strata: It is a generic notice to all occupants.
CRASH: You are sending out a threatening letter to all agents and owners because some gardens are an issue? What if an agent breaches their tenant thinking this letter is sent for an actual reason? I have owners stressing about these threatening letters.
Strata: Please refer your owners to the minutes of the last AGM.
I’m not joking. This strata manager actually thought it was acceptable to send out a generic letter to all agents and owners threatening to breach and issue fines if they do not bring their gardens up to scratch, even though there were only 2 gardens that had 1 or 2 small weeds in them. This strata manager had one of the owners drive up to the complex, take photos of each garden, then without even reviewing them the strata manager issued these threatening letters.
A better Approach
Strata issue 1
This is rubbish on the common property in a retail complex and needs to be dealt with immediately, not in a few days.
Imagine trying to run a business when someone on the street dumped all the junk they didn’t want to take with them to their next rental property right out the front of your shop.
Responding 2 days later with a “fill in this form” rubbish is an embarrassment to the industry.
CRASH Strata 1
Would have dealt with this issue immediately and had contractors out as soon as possible to clear the rubbish up. CRASH Strata does not require agents, owners, or tenants to complete forms to report maintenance or other items the strata manager should action.
Strata issue 2
Ignoring the Lot Vs Unit error which happens a lot with strata managers…
Imagine my surprise to find out that the letter advising that the tenants were not keeping up their gardens and if our they didn’t bring their gardens up to scratch we would be issued with a breach and a fine – was a generic letter sent out to all agents and owners.
The strata manager even had photos they could have reviewed instead of not looking and just sending out these threats.
The no correction or apology for not doing their job is annoying to say the least.
CRASH Strata 2
Would have driven out to the complex, reviewed each garden, then sent a friendly email to the agent and/or owner of the 2 units that had the tiny weeds.
Actually, I probably would have pulled the 2 little weeds out myself and sent a friendly email asking for them to ask their tenants to keep up with the gardens
We do things differently
You can get more bees with honey, and you can get get quicker action from clients without having to threaten them.
At CRASH Strata we do not take a punitive approach to everything every time. We treat clients like clients, not like nuisances.
We also do not need a form filled in every time you need to report maintenance or want to request approval for something.
For a Strata manager, Agents, Owners, and Tenants are all clients, and their needs need to be looked after as well as the Strata complex, not just the “Common Area” and not just “We act on instructions from the COO”.