New Reporting Requirements for Strata Schemes in NSW: All About Filing Annual Reports for Your Strata

5 min read

In an effort to enhance transparency and improve the governance of strata schemes, the New South Wales government has instituted new annual reporting requirements. This legislative update introduces a systematic approach to maintain updated records of strata schemes, aiding both the schemes’ management and potential buyers in the property market. In this article, we explore these new reporting requirements for NSW strata schemes and share some practical tips to help you remain compliant. 

Table of Contents

New Annual Report Requirement for Strata Schemes

Starting from May 1, 2022, strata schemes in New South Wales are required to submit an annual return to the Department of Fair Trading. This new requirement is part of an amendment to the Strata Schemes Management Act 2015, which mandates that strata schemes file their return within three months following each Annual General Meeting (AGM). Additionally, a fee of $3 per lot is to be paid.

What Needs to Be Reported?

The annual report must include the following details:

  • Strata plan number, registration date, address, and the number of lots.
  • The date of the most recent AGM.
  • Whether an Annual Fire Safety Statement has been issued, along with its issue date.
  • Contact details for the owners corporation secretary, chairperson, strata managing agent, building manager, and emergency contact for the strata scheme.
  • Details concerning the strata renewal committee.
  • Implementation and the Strata Hub

The process for submitting these details is expected to be clarified in the coming months. The NSW Government has introduced the “Strata Hub,” an online portal set to launch in May 2022. This hub will centralise all information about residential strata buildings, making it accessible to buyers and owners. The data provided in the annual returns will feed into this portal, potentially being made publicly available or shared with various government departments.

Compliance and Penalties

The initial deadline for submitting the first annual report is September 30, 2022, for owners corporations that have held their AGM on or before June 30, 2022. Those that have not yet held an AGM by this date are granted an extension of three months from the date of their first AGM. Failing to meet these deadlines can result in fines up to $5,500.

Furthermore, there is an ongoing obligation to update any incorrect information provided and to notify Fair Trading of any changes in key personnel or the establishment of a strata renewal committee. These updates must be made within 28 days after recognising the discrepancy or change. Non-compliance with these update requirements can lead to additional fines up to $2,200.

Owners corporations must take these new obligations seriously to avoid financial penalties and ensure they remain compliant with the updated regulations under the Strata Schemes Management Act.

Practical Tips for Complying with Strata Annual Reporting Requirements

To ensure compliance with the new reporting requirements for strata schemes in NSW, here are some practical tips that can help streamline the process and avoid potential fines:

Designate the Correct Reporter

Ensure that the scheme’s secretary, chairperson, or strata manager is responsible for completing the reporting. These roles are typically best informed about the details of the strata scheme and are most qualified to handle official communications.

Utilise the Correct Reporting Channel

All reporting should ideally be done online through the Strata Hub via a MyService NSW account. If you do not have an account, create one at Service NSW’s website. For those unable to report online, submissions can be made in person at a Service NSW Centre. Assistance can be sought by calling 13 77 88 for the nearest location.

Prepare Necessary Information

  • Basic Strata Details: Have your strata plan number, the registered address, the number of lots, and the date of the last AGM on hand.
  • Contact Details: Gather and prepare the contact details of key strata administration personnel including the secretary, chairperson, managing agent, building manager, and emergency contact.
  • Strata Financials: Ensure all financial details related to the administration fee and other relevant financial information are readily available.
  • Building Details: Know the specifics of your building such as the number of floors, fire safety compliance status, and any other pertinent details that may be required.

Handling Incomplete Information

If certain required information is not available or cannot be discovered, the reporting form allows for these fields to be marked as ‘not found or undiscoverable’. This should be used sparingly and only when all reasonable efforts to obtain the information have failed.

By following these tips, strata schemes can ensure they meet the requirements set forth by the Department of Fair Trading and maintain good standing. Always remember that staying proactive and organised is key to managing strata reporting efficiently.

Reporting Multiple Schemes? This is What You Can Do.

For strata managers handling multiple schemes, the integration of strata management software with the Strata Hub via an API can streamline the reporting process significantly. Here’s a breakdown of the key steps and features available for reporting multiple schemes:

Software Integration for Reporting

Strata managers can directly report from their strata management software if it’s integrated with the Strata Hub using the reporting API. To utilise software integration, strata managers should coordinate with their software providers to ensure compatibility and integration with the Strata Hub.

Thereafter, strata managers need to register on the Strata Hub and complete the proof of identity process. Despite the automation, strata managers must manually complete privacy declarations, review the information, and process payments for each scheme on the Strata Hub. This ensures adherence to privacy, security, and payment processing standards.

Manual Reporting Option

Strata managers not using software integration can manually enter information for each scheme individually on the Strata Hub’s annual reporting page.

Downloading Scheme Lists

Strata managers can download a list of their schemes from the Strata Hub to monitor annual reporting deadlines. In order to access this list, you may log in to the Strata Hub, navigate to the ‘My strata schemes’ dashboard, and download a list. Sort and cross-check this data with internal records to track AGM dates and reporting deadlines.

Bulk Operations

The bulk upload feature allows entering annual reporting data for multiple schemes in one session, but privacy notices and declarations must still be completed individually.

Payments of the administrative fee ($3 per lot) must be made individually for each scheme, allowing precise financial management but precluding a single bulk payment option.

Strata managers can update reported information for multiple schemes via API, requiring coordination with their software providers for API implementation.

By leveraging these tools and processes, strata managers can efficiently handle the reporting requirements for multiple schemes, ensuring compliance with NSW regulations and optimising their operational workflow.

Key Takeaways

For strata schemes in New South Wales, adhering to the new reporting requirements is not just about compliance; it’s about participating in a system that enhances the integrity and transparency of property management state-wide. By ensuring that all required information is accurately and promptly submitted, strata schemes can avoid the risks of penalties and contribute to a more informed and efficient property market. Should you need further assistance or have questions about navigating these new requirements, we are right by your side. Let’s ensure your strata is fully compliant.

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Picture of Authored By<br>Raea Khan

Authored By
Raea Khan

Director Lawyer, PBL Law Group

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The five-star reviews are well-deserved. I needed a motion and a bylaw drawn up for urgent repairs of my strata unit and the AGM was in two weeks' time. My solicitor was friendly, efficient, knew what documents to ask for, and had all the paperwork prepared well within the timeframe. She also took the time to run through all the legalese and the different possible scenarios with me to make sure I understood. I am so glad to have found this firm and I will not hesitate to use their services again in future if the need arises.
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Anita Bradley has been an absolute dream to deal with. Anita's conveyancing skills and knowledge knows absolutely no boundaries along with her effective communication skills which has made selling and buying a completely stress free exchange for us. We recommend PBL Law to everyone looking for outstanding service. We will definitely be returning clients.
Kushlan Aluwihare
PBL Law Group were fantastic. Anita from PBL worked with us closely during our property search and made the exchange and settlement process smooth and stress free. Highly recommended.
Gail Whitford
PBL handled my late mothers estate, they were very obliging and patient with any and all questions that we had, thank you to David , Sharon and the other staff that we dealt with, everyone was so easy to talk to and friendly .David came to the home where my Mother was living and helped her to get her will in order, Sharon helped us through the process of executing her wishes when the time came even doing a house call which was so much easier, thank you all so much
S M
I have experienced an excellent service from PBL (especially from Anita) during the sale of my recent property on Central Coast, and during the purchase of our current property in Sydney. Throughout many challengers, especially with the sale, Anita presented her very professional and knowledgeable conveyancer, positively solving all obstacles. "Above and Beyond" Award going to Anita!!! :-)
Amanda Reitzin
The five-star reviews are well-deserved. I needed a motion and a bylaw drawn up for urgent repairs of my strata unit and the AGM was in two weeks' time. My solicitor was friendly, efficient, knew what documents to ask for, and had all the paperwork prepared well within the timeframe. She also took the time to run through all the legalese and the different possible scenarios with me to make sure I understood. I am so glad to have found this firm and I will not hesitate to use their services again in future if the need arises.
Ricky Cooper
Anita is amazing! So attentive, approachable and communicates everything every step of the way. I have now bought and sold property with Anita and I cannot recommend her highly enough.
Ron Thomsen
Our Commercial Property conveyancing was handled very professionally. Anita’s experience and responsiveness was an asset in this transaction.
Trace M
I am so grateful for Anita Bradley from PBL Law Group helped me with this property settlement, she has went above beyond to ensure I understand everything because of our deafness. I will recommended Anita or their team. Thank you so much for all the hard work you have done for us.
Tricia Wheatstone
For almost 18 months I have been a client of Alex Ilkin. Alex is very knowledgeable and professional and has consistently provided me with thorough, honest and well set out advice, including steering my case through appeal proceedings. He always worked for my best interests with integrity and compassion. I recommend Alex and his team at PBL.