The Body Corporate and Community Management and Other Legislation Amendment Act 2023 (Qld) (‘the Act’) was passed by the Queensland Parliament on 14 November 2023.
Developers are now required to give buyers at least 28 days’ notice of an upcoming sunset date under an off-the-plan contract and their intention to terminate the contract after that date, and seek the buyer’s consent to terminate the contract. Buyers are required to act reasonably when deciding whether to give that consent and to respond to the notice within the time specified in the notice, however, a failure to respond does not amount to deemed consent and there are no penalties on buyers under the Act failing to respond.
Developers may only terminate under sunset date provisions in off-the-plan contracts with the buyer’s consent or with an order of the Supreme Court. The Developer must pay the buyer’s costs of the Supreme Court proceedings, unless the Developer is able to satisfy the Court that the buyer’s withholding of consent to terminate was unreasonable.
The new sunset date provisions apply to contracts that were on foot prior to the commencement of the legislation, but not yet settled. Interestingly, they do not apply to off-the-plan contracts for proposed lots in community titles schemes.
The Act also introduces key changes for community titles schemes, including:
- removing the requirement for the body corporate to have a seal and to execute documents under seal;
- the ability for body corporates to prohibit smoking;
- the establishment of a mechanism for body corporates to regulate pet ownership. Blanket bans on pets are no longer permitted;
- the authorisation for body corporates to tow vehicles parked in contravention of by-laws on common property;
- reduction of the consensus required for scheme termination to 75% of owners;
- granting adjudicators the authority to implement alternative insurance when the current insurance cannot comply with required standards;
- enhancement of by-law enforcement and access to records; and
- strengthening the code of conduct for body corporate managers and caretakers.
The vast majority of the changes to community titles schemes have not yet taken effect and will do so at a date to be proclaimed in the future.
Stay tuned for more education from CG Law in the coming months in relation to the changes implemented in the Body Corporate and Community Management and Other Legislation Amendment Act 2023, Land Sales Act 1984 and the Property Law Act 2023.
If you have concerns or need help navigating these changes contact our Commercial + Property Team for more information.
For further information please contact Amanda Tolson, Director.