In the previous issue, we highlighted that there are 15 Local Authorities in Johor and around 85% of the strata properties fall under the jurisdiction of 2 Local Authorities, namely Majlis Bandaraya Johor Bahru (MBJB) and Majlis Bandaraya Iskandar Puteri (MBIP).
The Strata Management Tribunal was established under the purview of the Housing and Local Government Ministry in mid-2015 except in Johor which was established about 1 year later. Strata Management Tribunal is a cheap and speedy alternative to filing a civil suit. But how can this help you as an owner?
Exercising Your Rights as an Owner
- Formal complaint to Management
The first step is to always submit a formal complaint to the management’s office on your grouses. Attach pictures to provide evidence. Set a reasonable timeline to respond and/or rectify the issue.
- Formal complaint to COB
If no response is received, submit a formal complaint to COB attaching the original complaint. If the response from the management is not acceptable, write to the management and copy COB. Please make sure to endorse all submissions as proof of acceptance is required.
- Filing in Tribunal
If all above actions fail, file a Tribunal claim. Be sure the matter is within the jurisdiction of the Tribunal. Include all formal communications as affidavit to support the case.
- File Motion at AGM
The SMA requires every stratified development to conduct AGM annually and within 15 months from the date of the previous AGM. AGMs are an excellent venue to discuss issues related to the community.
A motion in writing on the matter to be discussed should be submitted to the management office at least 7 days prior to the AGM as well. The management is required to include the motion in the agenda of the AGM and display it on the notice board.
Unfortunately, very few owners exercise their rights to even attend AGMs.
Embrace the strength of a community
Imagine every strata development as a micro city. Electing the right candidates to helm the JMB or MC is critical for the wellbeing of the community.
Decision making provided for in the act is on a majority basis. Do your part to bring the community together to do what is right for your development.
Responsibilities as an owner
As an owner of a stratified development, it’s imperative to understand your rights. You constitute part of the JMB or MC and are part owners of the common area and facilities of the development.
Please be a responsible owner by paying the service charges in a timely manner. Without the funds, nothing can be done to improve the development.
Exercise your rights by attending AGMs, and rally the community for a positive change. Don’t write off your rights by signing off proxy forms unless you’re certain your proxy is representing your voice and beliefs.
Sr Terence was formerly a Finance Manager based in Singapore who switched his career to Property Surveying. He’s the CEO at Invenio Potential. Dr. Kam has PHD in Facility Management & Degree in Building Surveying. She is leading the Defect Management & Procurement Departments at Invenio Potential. Sr Terence & Dr. Kam are both Licensed Property Managers. They can be reached at www.invenioptl.com