How to keep the peace in a strata property this Christmas

Managing a property in strata can be more taxing than usual during the holidays as there are some festive activities that may disrupt the air of joy in the world. Here’s how you can instruct your tenants and make sure everyone has a relatively silent night.   

happy santa

Archers - the Strata Professionals partner Grant Mifsud said that the Christmas season is typically a time when majority of complaints are heard as loud as the little drummer boy pa rum pum pum puming away.

“Everyone is ready to let loose at the end of the year,” Mr Mifsud said.

“It’s Christmas, friends and relatives visit frequently. There’s the odd party and people will be staying over. But it’s also the time to remember to be a good neighbour.”

In order to keep everyone’s Christmas nights silent, Mr Mifsud has provided his top tips to make sure your tenants maintain the peace:


1. Go light on the Christmas lights

Everyone loves a good Christmas light display, but we also like to sleep in heavenly peace, which can be done by suggesting to tenants to tone down the amount of exterior Christmas decorations and lights.

“Make sure you only decorate on your own property or common property with prior approval and turn your Christmas lights off after 10pm if in close proximity to neighbouring bedrooms,” Mr Mifsud said.

2. Make sure the war is over on shared parking spaces

While making sure parking access is clear to all is a common courtesy to have any time of the year, this should be exacerbated during Christmas time with visiting family and friends looking for spaces to park their cars. Landlords should inform their tenants to make certain their visitors adhere to any posted time limits.

“Better still, encourage them to park on the street or in a safe spot nearby,” he said.

“If your property’s body corporate wants to deal with parking issues and particular towing options, it should first carefully review the relevant laws.”

3. Use mangers and other shared spaces mindfully

If your tenants and their guests decide to have barbeques, picnics, or pool parties in common areas, make sure they are aware of the rules, including how garbage is disposed of after the event, Mr Mifsud said.

“You should also be aware of how your guests conduct themselves while drinking and ensure you minimise their risk of injuring themselves or others. Don’t let drunk guests disturb the peace,” he added.

4. Keeping any jingling bells and other loud noises to a minimum

No matter where a tenant may be, any loud noises they make will carry throughout a complex, Mr Mifsud warned.

“There will be property by-laws to be observed, requiring any noise able to be heard by the neighbours ending by a certain time, usually before 10pm, and not starting until after a decent hour,” he said.

If tenants do intend to move a party inside, it would be best to remind them that loud noises will be heard by those below them, such as stomping about from dancing, the clattering of cutlery and crockery, as well as general party shenanigans.

“It may also be necessary to remind [tenants to inform] Uncle Fred, who is down from the country, not to start making loud noises on your balcony until at least four hours after the sun rises,” Mr Mifsud said.

5. Don’t forget to deck the halls of your garbage bins and chutes

There is no other day that potentially produces more garbage than Christmas day, so those with lots of food waste and wrapping paper should be informed to get on top of this before communal garbage areas are piled up with trash.

“Don’t be the person who tosses the prawn shells into the garbage chute late on Christmas night, knowing that the bins won’t be collected for days,” warned Mr Mifsud.

“Summer heat does evil things to prawn scraps and the smell will constitute a nuisance to everyone. Wrap any leftover seafood scraps in newspaper and freeze them until the night before collection, then put them in the bin in the common area or drop them at the tip.

“If you have a tonne of Christmas wrapping and gift boxes, drop them at the tip while you’re there, rather than clog up the shared bins.”

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