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Body Corporate Committee Maintenance

Body Corporate Maintenance – Who Does What?

Confused over whether something is your responsibility as a lot owner, or if it is a Body Corporate maintenance responsibility?

Confused over whether something is your responsibility as a lot owner, or if it is a Body Corporate maintenance responsibility?
We get questions regarding responsibilities from our clients regularly – so I thought I’d share here how it’s worked out and what to do next.

The simple answer

In general terms – as a lot owner – you are responsible for maintaining your “lot”; and the Body Corporate is responsible maintaining the common property of the scheme.

The longer answer

But in reality, it can be a little tricker than that.

In Queensland there are two types of subdivision survey plans, and there are differences between the two which affect “boundary” definitions of common property and the lots within a scheme – and who is responsible for what.

The clarification of responsibilities really depends on which particular subdivision survey plan your community titles scheme has been registered under – Building Format Plan (BFP) or Standard Format Plan (SFP). That is the first thing you will need to check out with your body corporate manager or committee.

Building Format Plan (BFP)

Under the BFP – the Body Corporate is typically responsible for maintaining the following:

  • Utility infrastructure on the exterior of the lot (common property)
  • Exterior doors and windows and the external portion of the balcony balustrade
  • Building foundations and supporting framework
  • The roofing structure (and membranes) which is considered the boundary between the lot and common property
  • The common property lawns and gardens
  • Exterior painting of the entire scheme/building
  • Garage doors and fittings and exclusive use basement carparks (the individual car space still must be maintained by the individual lot owner)

The lot owner is typically responsible for maintaining the following:

  • Doors and windows which lead onto a balcony area as this forms part of the lot
  • Any fixture or fitting that is not original to the scheme and has been installed by the lot owner (or previous lot owner) for their benefit only
  • Dishwashers, sinks, garbage disposal units, shower screens and trays
  • Some elements of the utility infrastructure – such as hot water systems and associated pipework and wiring, air conditioning systems, cold water pipes and cables that are located within an internal wall within the lot

Standard Format Plan (SFP)

In the SFP – the Body Corporate is typically responsible for maintaining the following:

  • The common property roads, gardens and lawns
  • Some elements of the utility infrastructure located on common property (boundary of the yard)

The lot owner is typically responsible for maintaining the following:

  • The garage attached to the lot
  • The roofing structure. If the roof is shared with another lot owner, then each owner shares any associated maintenance costs and responsibility
  • Balconies
  • Exterior doors, windows and supporting framework/foundations
  • Guttering – unless guttering is shared with another lot
  • External maintenance and painting – Note that the Body Corporate may provide direction on paint colour choices etc
  • All gardens and lawns located within the boundary of the lot
  • Water pipework and cabling, located within the boundary that service the one lot only

Still not sure?

If you still have questions around your responsibilities and body corporate maintenance responsibilities, the best thing to do is to contact your body corporate manager or body corporate committee for clarification on which format plan is relevant to your scheme.

By Tammy Lynch

Growing up I always dreamed of travelling overseas and seeing the world, and what started as a 12-month journey turned into 14 years! Settled back into Australia now, and relishing the challenges of Body Corporate Management.

17 replies on “Body Corporate Maintenance – Who Does What?”

My roof is caving in happened overnight above the garage roller door . Whose responsibility is it and what or who should I inform first ?

Depending on the legal structure of your scheme it could be a body corporate responsibility or an owners responsibility. Contact your body corporate manager or a committee member if you don’t have a manager. They should be able to clarify responsibility for you. If it is urgent you may need to arrange a contractor first and resolve some of the details afterwards. At some stage your insurer may need to be informed.

Thankyou William I get in touch with the body corp now . Thankyou for your advice
Cheers lees!

Hi Leesa,

As this is within your lot it is the lot owner’s responsibility to repair it.

If you wish to lodge an insurance claim we can. You can have a local repairer provide quotes or I can ask for the insurer’s panel repairer to attend and assess.

If the claim is successful the excess would be payable by you before work can commence. The standard excess is $1,000

My insurance have told me that this issue with my garage roof is a structural issue and to inform body corp . The roof has come away either side as its plaster abouts the dollar door it has come down and will totally cave in soon. Is this standard see above with their reply just now ?

Hi, it sounds like your body corporate has provided you with a good answer. They believe it is your responsibility and have identified a reason why. They have also offered to help you with a claim. They sound helpful and the best thing to do is follow their direction.

Is the body corp; obligated to provide a safe working area to all owners and tenants within the building . Is the body corp; responsible to maintain disabled / service lift in a structually sound condition .how long can the body corp; procrastinate to fix a disabled lift by not calling a extraordinary general meeting and securing a bank loan to fix a disabled lift . is a body corp liable to prosecution for giving disabled pensioner owners and tenants no alternative but to crawl the stairs in order to get to their business premises because they do not want to fix a broken disabled lift and service a bank loan for fixing the lift . can owners not pay levies on time if the body corp; does not keep the maitence up on the disabled / service lift within the building to safe working condition . where can I lodge a formal complaint against the body corporate that will not take months to be heard for a resolution . is the body corp; obligated to provide the owners and tenants maitence service regular updates in real time when the complaints of maitence failure within the building will be addressed and fixed . Can the body corp; choose to ignore correspondence on safety issues , for instance the mains power needs to be shut off to the faulty disabled lift . the body corp; chooses to keep the power connected to appear the lift is working or has only now began to show signs of failure , the body corp; has admitted they are clueless when the disabled lift will be fixed again to stretch out to 2023 before addressing the now 8 months old problem . I am in Cairns north Queensland in the Crangold business Center . 129 A lake street Cairns 4870

Hi Terry,

Thanks for your comments. Generally, the body corporate has to maintain a safe site for all residents. Lift repairs can be very hard on disabled residents as sometimes repairs can be complicated and take an extended time to arrange. If you are having issues I would suggest you talk to your body corporate manager or building management. If they can’t give you satisfactory answers you may need to progress the matter through the Commissioner’s office.

I live under body Corp in a block of units in Victoria, each lot owner has a car space under the carport belonging to each lot. I recently purchased a unit, building inspection showed shared carport is not up to building codes needs to be pulled down. Who bears the cost of a new build & why was it left in bad condition for many many years? I thought body Corp had a responsibility to make sure the carport was in good condition. Any advice would be appreciated


Thanks for your comment. We are based on the Gold Coast and the rules vary from state to state so we can’t provide an answer in this case. If you have a body corporate manager they should be able to give you an answer with reference to the legislations. Otherwise you could send your question to Look Up Strata (https://www.lookupstrata.com.au/) and I’m sure they would find someone to respond.



In a BUP, who is responsible for maintaining/repairing the garage door which is on the lot boundary and services only that lot.


this sounds like it would be Body Corporate responsibility but you should check with your body corporate manager to see if there are any specific conditions for your building such as a by-law that may affect that.



When I purchased my unit it came with 3 balconies. One of the balconies you could only get to if you slid up the big widow. As it had broken glass and a safety is because it was 20 years old and corroded from the salt I replace it with a door which was approved by the B/C. It didnt have a balustrade, I asked the B/C to put one on and they said it was my problem because I replace the rotting window with a door 2m in length by 1.5 in width even though its a 3 metre drop. The balustade is only 1.2m by 1.25m. Very small. Please advise who would be responsible

Hi Maree,

Thanks for your mail. I’d recommend that you contact your body corporate manager to review and discuss. They can help you determine if the responsibility for the balcony lies with the owner or the body corporate and if the changes you had done to your property impact this. You wold need to see all relevant documents for the property in order to establish this.



Where I rent ( near the beach )the 3rd bedroom has awning windows which open out approx 15cm, One window has been seized closed since we have moved in, the second has a broken handle so it is impossible to be closed and is open all the time. Rain, pests & wind whistles like mad through it making the bedroom extremely difficult to sleep in.. and now as the room is always damp the lighting fixtures have also corroded and now the lights dont work.
I have requested via the agent that the owner rectify at least one window but they have refused.
I have since been informed that the windows are a body corp responsibility, can you please advise whom is responsible ??


It sounds like you are a tenant so you need to resolve this matter through the agent/landlord. If they do not give you a satisfactory answer you can contact the office of Fair Trading. External windows are often strata property but it depends on the rules for your building. It’s up to your agent/landlord to have that conversation with the owners corporation.

Hi Thomas,

If the power box only benefits your lot it would likely be owner’s responsibility to pay. If it is for the use of more than one owner it would likely be strata reponsibility. Either way you should contact your strata manager to discuss – you shouldn’t take any action until you have had an official approval from the Owners Corporation.

Will Marquand, Tower Body Corporate

I have a external power box on my wall lot and i want to cage it and have a Energy Aust lock attach,is the cost owners corp or lot owner..

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