On 11 October 2021, the Real Property Amendment (Certificates of Title) Act 2021 commenced, which abolished the Certificates of Title (CTs) and the control of the right to deal (CoRD) framework. All existing CTs have been cancelled and CTs will no longer be issued. Existing CTs will not need to be produced, and CoRD holder consent will not be required, for a dealing or plan to be registered. All existing Guidelines subject to this change are currently being reviewed and will be updated to reflect these changes. For further information regarding the abolition of CTs, please see https://www.registrargeneral.nsw.gov.au/property-and-conveyancing/eConveyancing/abolition-of-certificates-of-title

Pre 1974 plans

The Strata Schemes (Freehold Development) Act 1973 (now repealed) commenced on 1 July 1974 and replaced the previous legislation Conveyancing (Strata Titles) Act 1961. Transitional and savings provisions were contained in the new legislation which had affect upon previously registered plans. One of the most significant changes involved the relocation of some boundaries from the centreline of a structure (i.e. wall, floor or ceiling) to the face or faces of the structure.

NOTE: This FAQ relates to plans registered under the previous Acts and the current legislation dealing with strata schemes is the Strata Schemes Development Act 2015 and Strata Schemes Management Act 2015.

The Conveyancing (Strata Titles) Act 1961 provided that the boundary between separate lots or between lots and common property was the centreline of the dividing structures being walls, floors or ceilings. Upon the commencement of the Strata Schemes (Freehold Development) Act 1973  on 1 July 1974 these boundaries, for previously registered plans, moved to the inner face of the walls, the upper surface of the floors and the lower surface of the ceilings. The structure then became common property. Any walls or other structure which are between separate parts of the same lot remain as part of the lot and are not common property. This occurs even if the structure is shown on the plan. The most common example where these provisions create an issue is the wall within a lot between the living area and a balcony; in this case the wall and any door or window will remain as part of the lot and not become common property.

In some circumstances the plan may show a note indicating that the boundary is the centre (or face) of a structure. In this case the boundary remains in that position and is not relocated as described above.

With regard to plans registered prior to 1 July 1974 the following principles apply:

  • any structures between separate parts of the same lot are part of the lot and are not common property
  • a structure between separate lots or between a lot and common property is common property and
  • if the plan described by a note the location of a boundary relative to structure the boundary was not relocated.

NOTE: Special care is needed when considering whether a boundary was adjusted by the transitional provisions and careful consideration should be given to any actions involving plans prepared prior to 1 July 1974.

Publication Date: May 2024