Let me know what you think about how bodies corporate operate

Over the last 12 months as the MP for Auckland Central I have had people approach me regarding potential issues with bodies corporate.

Nikki Kaye

At this stage I am just asking that you tell me your views on whether the rules around bodies corporate are working or whether you want change. I plan to continue to work with Ministers to see if there is a need for any improvements.

One of the issues that has been raised is whether there is a need for greater accessibility and transparency of information around Bodies Corporate.

My electorate in Auckland Central has huge numbers of apartments. As the growth in apartments continue it is important people have confidence in how bodies corporate operate.

 - Nikki Kaye, MP for Auckland Central


184 signatures

  • signed 2016-03-07 13:02:21 +1300
    Hi Nikki,

    Really pleased to see you tackling this issue which has huge potential consequences for individuals and the NZ economy.

    I have owned in 2 very different BC properties and been involved in the development of a number of others. As in any organisation, the success of each BC starts at the top – with effective governance. In the first BC in which I was an owner, the BC Committee was Chaired by someone who was not only an owner of a unit in the building but who also had a high-value maintenance contract for the 64 unit development. It took over 2 years of concentrated effort by other members of the BC committee to address the governance and financial issues brought about by this individual and during this time the major construction problems with the building went mostly unresolved. Owners in that development have recently been told that they will each need to contribute six figure sums to rectify construction shortcomings. It is very likely that the cost would have been much less if the BC had been run properly from the beginning.

    I contrast this with the BC I now live in. We have a professional BC management company and a third-party contracted Building Manager. The ratio of owners-to-tenants is high and this, combined with the effective management and governance structure, makes a significant difference to the quality of our investment in the building and how we live from day to day.

    While not exclusively an Auckland issue, the need for increasing density of living in Auckland will see more people living and investing in BC property. This means effective legislation and regulation need to be in place to protect both their financial interests and their ability to live in “quiet enjoyment” of their home. As I see it, there are 3 key areas to address:

    • Governance – a tiered system of governance (similar to the new financial reporting standards) that is appropriate for the size of the BC

    • Financial Management – regulation of how LTM funds are invested, managed and reported on. E.g. BC reporting to a government agency similar to how charity organisations report to the Charities Commission

    • Lifestyle – timely and appropriate remedies for interference by others in people’s ability to enjoy living in their homes. E.g. Tenancy Tribunal able to adjudicate in BC matters
  • signed 2016-03-05 15:35:41 +1300
    we own & live in an apartment which is the road frontage 1 of 13, 3 stories tall side by side high on a hill in Birkenhead which we have owned since new in 1994 with 6 defined strata titled boundaries which the original council stamped consents stated where residential apartment on the top floors with home occupancy office on the ground floor. almost since day one most properties are owned by absentee owners / investors whom have chosen to divide their apartment / offices into 2 separate rental situations ( change of use) & (pay only 1 body corporate fee for 2 rentals) & despite council confirmation, letters, that they are in breach of the consents.. our complaints to the body corporate on this matter alone have condemned us to Coventry with neither crockers body corporate secretary or committee able to provide us with current contact points for any other owner nor are we able to get on the committee for want of a seconder, no discussion or conversation on any day today or long term activity

    except the 5 days notice we might get for an agm where any decisions have already been made by committee & we are just there to be ignored, overtalked & fill the blank space
  • signed 2016-03-04 20:41:45 +1300
    Of course the Body Corporate industry needs to be regulated. Our professional body corporate managers hold on to all the owners’ contact information and refused to pass it on the Chairperson even though its stipulated in the ACT that the chairperson must hold an owners’ contact list. They blatantly refused to co-operate with the Chair and do not correspond with owners except when its time to pay BC fees. As it is a rental building in Auckland without a BC committee, owners are not able to communicate with each other. The BC manager wants to hold on to power and dictate what owners can and cannot do. They also manage some units for owners so are using proxies for their own advantage. This is a real abuse of power. They are known in the real estate circle as “mafia of the BC”. .
  • signed 2016-03-03 15:29:41 +1300
    To Nikki Kaye, Thank you for your interest in the subject of Body Corporate operations.

    This is not about the Body Corporate companies but how difficult it is for a unit owner to get advice at a reasonable cost. Perhaps something like the Tenancy Tribunal could be established to handle unit owner concerns.

    I am 86 & was diagnosed with cancer in early 2013. I live with my son who acts as my caregiver. We live in an apartment subject to the 2010 UTA Act as per our body corporate admin company.

    Normally for enquiries we can email them & would expect a response within a reasonable time. Unfortunately this is hardly ever the case with our admin company. In July last year I emailed them with a query that wasn’t replied to until 34 days later despite repeated attempts to obtain an answer. I contacted a lawyer who sent a letter to the admin company Director, then finally an email was received from the admin company 34 days later with an answer but with no apology for the extended period.

    Earlier this month I sent an email to the Director as to whether my son could act as my proxy for our AGM meeting scheduled for Match. Now 3 weeks later no reply has been received.

    This is the body corporate company who were investigated by the Tenancy Tribunal for the Heritage Hotel Group. Several other cases have been made against this admin company. (refer NZ Herald) for content. The Director’s name is Glenn Kwok.

    Essentially a lot of the points raised by others through this forum I agree with, the body corporate industry needs to be regulated so that accountability & transparency becomes standard practice. Access to information regarding body corporate matters seems to be very hard to obtain currently through our administration company.

  • signed 2016-03-02 15:49:46 +1300
    I have been a body corporate manager for 7 x Industrial sites for some years. Having worked with the old Act, I consider the current Act to be so much better and , on the whole, more than meets the needs of the Owners of the Units in the complexes. I have read of the complaints listed, and I believe the Act covers most of the items listed. Most problems would be solved if body corporate chairpeople and their body corporate managers read, understood and enforced the provisions of the Act and the accompanying regulations. I think there is a lot of people crying ‘wolf’ when the problems they cry about are well covered by the existing Act.

    I have found in the past that the overwhelming complaining comes from residential body corporates and often the many industrial body corporates are overlooked. Please do not allow this to happen.

    Further many so called ‘professionals’ (lawyers, real estate people) I have found to be woefully ignorant of the provisions within the existing legislation.

    I have found those buying into body corporates are often either poorly advised by these ‘professionals’ or take no notice of the advice proffered in the excitement of the purchase.

    Major changes to what I believe is a good piece of legislation will not fix problems that are expressed from ignorance.

    I would like to be involved further in ongoing deliberations as I do not want to see a lot of effort wasted fixing something that isn’t really broke!
  • signed 2016-03-01 16:15:21 +1300
    I bought an apartment with 40 units in the building a couple of years ago. The body corporate seems to run pretty well. The long-term maintenance plan appears to cover everything to be expected and funds are allocated to it. The body corporate was responsive to suggestions of improvement at our last AGM and acted upon them. From my experience of this one, it seems to work fine.