4.14 Paying attention to everyone’s needs | Owners Corporation Network

4.14 Paying attention to everyone’s needs

If one of your owners or tenants is having great difficulties or strong issues with the executive committee decisions or process, you should aim to ignore any personality conflicts and look very carefully at the issues being raised, the obligations of the executive committee and owners corporation and the rights of the owner/tenant.

Of course, if a resident or owner disagrees with a decision they can take the matter up with the Consumer, Trader and Tenancy Tribunal, which many owners do (see 4.3.1).

Imagine this: Over the past month it has become apparent that the basement parking overflow water pump has failed and when it rains the floor floods, at the same time a whining tenant has complained they can hear irregular high pitched noises in their apartment which they think is coming from the lift. Which one would you make your priority? Which one are you obliged to deal with and which one can you ignore?

The answer is yes, of course the pump should be a priority, but you cannot just ignore the tenant’s complaint – even if this is their third different complaint this year and you think they have a vivid imagination! You should deal with all owner and resident complaints and concerns as if they were your own. Yes! Imagine that you were the one with the problem and then decide how to tackle it. Keep thinking objectively, not subjectively. Concentrate on the issues instead of the person. You don’t necessarily have to do all the leg-work for the complainant, but approach the issue with an open mind and a genuine interest to resolve.

Suggested process with the noise complaint, ask the complainant to document the times and loudness of the noise – both within their apartment and in the lift lobby area - and the corresponding lift movements. Armed with this and depending on the resources available you could ask the building manager, strata manager, concierge, maintenance man or executive committee member to book a time with the tenant to confirm the noises. This confirmation can then be used to call in the lift maintenance service company to investigate and work to resolving the issue. Sometimes showing that you are concerned and interested in getting to the bottom of an issue is enough to satisfy a complainant – even if the issue proves hard to resolve.