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Commissioners Corner: The Strata Managers Role and Misconceptions (QLD)

Many people have found themselves confused about what duties fall under the responsibility of the body corporate versus the strata manager. In this article we iron out some of the confusion.

The following conclusive list of keys differences between the responsibility of the body corporate and that of a strata manager:


The body corporate


The strata manager

•          Maintains, manages and controls the common property for the benefit of all lot owners •          Carries out the duties contained within the Administration Agreement with the body corporate
•          Sets the budgets, the amounts to be paid by the owners to make sure the body corporate has sufficient funds to meet expenses •          Prepares draft budgets and financial statements, for the committee to consider and submit to all owners at the at the Annual General Meeting


•          Makes decisions (committee or general meeting), enforces the by-laws, that are a set of rules relating to the body corporate that advise owners and guests who live in the scheme on what they can and cannot do, •          Has no decision-making power under body corporate law, issues by laws breaches following committee resolution at the institution of the committee
•          Takes out insurance on behalf of owners, such as public risk insurance over the common property and building insurance •          Places the insurance and pays the invoice as per the instructions of the body corporate
•          Manages and maintains body corporate assets, committee or the body corporate approves all spending from body corporate funds. •          Maintains the body corporate records in accordance with the legislative requirements on behalf of the body corporate, cannot decide to spend money unilaterally.
•         Keeps records for the body corporate, including minutes of meetings, roll of owners details, financial accounts, registers of assets, improvements to common property by owners, contracts register •          Distributes correspondence, meeting agendas and minutes of meetings
•          Approves the agenda and meeting material before it is distributed (owner motions must be included without change). •          Prepares meeting material and minutes of meetings. Does not have authority to submit a motion or add an item to a meeting agenda.
•          Chairperson chairs all meetings he or she is present at; if chairperson is not present, the persons present and entitled to vote decide who chairs the meeting (does not have to be the body corporate manager or another committee member). •          Cannot chair the meetings if the chairperson is present; if chairperson is not present the persons present and entitled to vote decide who chairs the meeting (does not have to be the body corporate manager or another committee member).

Disclaimer: This information is general information only and does not constitute legal advice. These bullet points do not intend to cover all responsibilities of a body corporate manager or a body corporate. The contractual arrangement between a body corporate manager and a body corporate would normally disclose the duties of a body corporate manager. This may or may not include all of the following duties detailed in this document. The contract should be the primary reference to determine the responsibilities of a body corporate manager engaged by a body corporate.

My office has also found the following five common misconceptions that people have about a strata managers role:.

  1. The body corporate manager is responsible for getting quotes.
  2. The body corporate manager can answer my correspondence independent of direction from the body corporate committee.
  3. The body corporate manager should have checked the motion was valid.
  4. The body corporate manager has increased the levies.
  5. The body corporate manager makes all the decisions.

Here is the reality:

  1. The strata manager is not the body corporate.
  2. Body corporate levies are paid into the body corporate bank account and do not go to the strata manager.
  3. The strata manager has no authority to carry out the functions of the body corporate.
  4. The strata manager cannot approve owners’ requests as these must be approved by the committee or by all owners at a general meeting.
  5. Compliance items such as work health and safety, fire safety, insurance valuation, sinking fund forecasts and asbestos reports are imposed by various legislative requirements, they are not strata manager requirements.

This article was contributed by Chris Irons, Commissioner for Body Corporate and Community Management.

Leave a Reply

  1. Joan Collings

    Good basic information for body corporates to adhere to. Easy to understand, no jargon, and concise as information overload makes it difficult searching for the facts. Most people’s attention span is
    limited and this clearly gets to the point.

    1. Chris Irons, Commissioner

      Hello Joan and thank you for your comment. It is always good to hear that our information is user-friendly to our clients.

  2. alan davis

    Good morning
    A well written article
    One point concerning item 4
    Our Body Corporate Manager changed the levy structure at the last AGM
    Our body corporate for over 20 years had our levies in three parts
    1 Admin Fund
    2 Sinking Fund
    3 Caretakers levy.
    The Body Corporate Manager lumped the Admin Fund and the Caretakers Levy
    This greatly affected the managers units levy as approximately 50% of levies are caretakers levy
    Your advice on this matter would be appreciated
    Alan Davis

    1. Chris Irons, Commissioner

      Hello Alan and thank you for your comment. I would recommend you contact the Information Service of my Office on 1800 060 119 to obtain some further information about your query.

  3. Doug Hillary

    Informative as usual – thanks
    It is a great shame that Strata Managers are not Licensed. The y have no financial commitment to the Complex they are involved with yet some seem to believe that they are the “Öwner” of the Complex they are involved with, and tend to act as such with vulnerable Committees
    In my opinion and immediate experience this is an area the any review of the role of the Strata Manager’s function should give a lot of consideration to

  4. Peter Benkendorff

    One thing left out is that Body Corporate managers have to adhere to a code of conduct as set out in the Act. The first one is to thoroughly know that Act. It is unfortunate that many Body Corporate Managers do not know the Act and the regulations and frequently breach the Code of Conduct. It should be easier for owners to notify the BCCM Commissioner of actions of the Body Corporate Managers and for the Commissioner to take action on severe breaches or repeated breaches.

    1. Chris Irons, Commissioner

      Hello Peter and thank you for your comment. If you were wanting more information about the code of conduct and disputes related to it, I would suggest you contact the Information Service of my Office on 1800 060 119

  5. Viv Deighton

    I agree very strongly with both Peter and Doug’s comments above.

    The fact that anyone can appoint themselves as a Body Corporate Manager without the requirement of a license, experience or in fact any really strong pertinent governing or legislative ACT/Legislation except their own is frightening.

    Who manages the manager?

    As owners in Strata we are at the mercy of some unscrupulous individuals who call themselves BCMs and consistently demonstrate that they care little for the good of owners, or their investments. Seems fee generation comes first!!

    1. Chris Irons, Commissioner

      Hello Viv and thank you for your comment. You might like to note my comments on the other posts you mention, to give you some further information about this topic.

  6. Zab

    I stumbled upon this gem of a blog while researching the best body corporate manager in Queensland. It’s refreshing to see someone debunking the myths surrounding their role. Your insights and expertise make me feel more informed and empowered as a strata owner. Highly recommend this read to all my fellow Queenslanders!