Want to maintain the Christmas cheer and not get a warning from your strata committee? Here’s what you should know.
For residents and home owners in strata apartment buildings and townhouses, strata living etiquette is particularly important during the festive season if residents host large, noisy gatherings that annoy their neighbours, according to Archers the Strata Professionals.
“Living in a community where people are close to their neighbours makes it important for strata residents to show consideration and make sure they adhere to the strata community by-laws,” partner Grant Mifsud said.
“If you are planning a social event over the holidays, which will involve a lot of guests coming to your unit or townhouse, it helps to let your neighbours know about if beforehand.
“If there are smokers coming, be conscious of any restrictions and mindful of smoke drifting into neighbouring homes. The golden rule in strata is, ‘Do unto others as you would have them do unto you’.”
Mr Mifsud said the increasing number of units in strata schemes getting the full Christmas trimmings of lights and decorations is also something that can “trigger” community tensions.
“Christmas light decorating is a tradition that many enjoy at this time of year, but residents putting them up need to ensure they are not irritating their neighbours,” he said.
“Lights hanging off balconies may flash all night long into your neighbour’s bedrooms. Residents should also check their strata by-laws to see if there are any restrictions around where you can place your Christmas decorations, particularly in common hallways and foyers.”
Tips for maintaining strata etiquette this Christmas, as per the advice of Mr Mifsud:
• If you have visitors, make sure they park thoughtfully and don’t block access for other residents or visitors.
• Be considerate when using shared facilities such as a swimming pool or barbecue common area. Don’t let intoxicated guests disturb the peace and make sure you clear up after your event.
• Watch the noise levels. There will be by-laws requiring any noise able to be heard by neighbours to end at a certain time, usually 10pm. Avoid any clatter and stomping from dancing or party shenanigans disturbing the occupants of the unit below and neighbouring units.
• Be considerate with the garbage. Don’t be the person who tosses the prawn shells into the garbage chute late on Christmas night, knowing the bins won’t be collected for days or throw all the empty bottles out in the middle of the night after the party. Wrap any leftover seafood scraps in newspaper and freeze them until the night before collection and walk the empty bottles down to the recycle bin.