Strata inspection scheme moves ahead

Strata-titled properties in North Queensland could soon be part of a regular inspection scheme, as the industry grapples with spiralling strata insurance premiums in the storm-prone region.

The Insurance Council of Australia (ICA) has engaged James Cook University to design an engineering inspection scheme, which was a key recommendation of an independent study into the problem last year.

The regular engineering inspections will be aimed at ensuring the buildings are resistant to future extreme weather events, and to improve understanding of how they might perform during these events.

ICA CEO Rob Whelan says: “Designing an inspection scheme is a logical next step toward helping strata owners and strata managers address vulnerabilities that may exist with their buildings and reduce preventable damage.

“Once it’s been developed, governments can then consider adopting the scheme to assist strata owners and managers identify and potentially manage vulnerabilities to their buildings in regions exposed to extreme weather, such as cyclones.”

The engineering inspection scheme for strata-title body corporates will:

  • Investigate and report on any specific building issues that could lead to extreme weather damage
  • Identify high-level remediation options to address any detected vulnerabilities of the building to extreme weather events, for consideration by the body corporate, and
  • Deliver a report to the body corporate on the status of the building with regard to detected extreme weather vulnerabilities.

It is hoped strata property owners will then be able to the report as evidence of inspections and actions taken to mitigate risk with their insurers, with the potential for reductions in insurance premiums on a case-by-case basis due to lower risk.

Find out more about strata issues in North Queensland and the growing opportunities in strata insurance in general with our in-depth feature.