In most plans the external walls, the floors, roofs and ceilings of a building will be common property. In some cases the developer may request a plan where the building standing on each lot forms part of the lot and is not common property. The location plan in these circumstances will not differ from that of a normal plan. The floor plan will be different from a normal plan in the following ways:
- The walls will be shown by thick broken lines unless they form a lot boundary.
- There will be only one floor plan regardless of the number of levels in the building. The floor plan will represent the perimeter walls of the building at ground level.
- It should include a statement indicating:
'The structure of the building standing on each lot, including walls, floors, ceilings and roofs, forms part of the lot and is not common property.'
- No vincula or reference to part lots will be used as there are no separate parts of the lots.
- The plan must have a statement indicating that the building forms part of the lot and is not common property.
- If a common wall exists the plan must indicate its status i.e. The Common Wall is Common Property or Boundary is Centreline of Common Wall.
- The area will be calculated at ground level only regardless of the number of levels.
- A stratum statement should be provided for the whole of the lots. The stratum statement should take into account the height of the building. Consideration should also be given to any possible vertical extensions of the building.
- It is recommended that the following statement be added:
'Any service line within one lot servicing another lot is common property.'
In some case the building on a lot may overhang another lot in the scheme. There is no need to create an easement for this overhang if the statement indicates the building forms part of the lot upon which it stands. However, consideration should be given to creating an easement to allow access for maintenance purposes.
The plan must contain connections from the building to define the lot boundaries as in normal plans.
When not all of the buildings form part of the lot
Schemes have been registered where some of the building form part of the lot and the remainder are common property. This is a practice which is now discouraged by NSW LRS.
It is the opinion of this office that it may cause friction among lot owners due to confusion regarding the responsibility of maintaining the buildings and have a detrimental effect on the management of the scheme.
While a plan prepared in this fashion may meet the criteria for registration it may not be within the spirit of the legislation. If there is an intention to lodge a plan for registration which has some but not all of the buildings forming part of their respective lots then prior approval must be sought. The request for approval should be addressed to Manager strata plan section and should contain enough information to explain the circumstances and that any affect it would have on the unit entitlements was considered. It may be desirable to create specific by-laws regarding the maintenance of the buildings which form part of the common property.