A "Christmas ode" to your tenants

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Strata apartment landlords are expected to benefit from an industry professional's recent reminder on the approvals required before putting up exterior decorations and lights for the holidays.

“Most bodies corporate have by-laws prohibiting additions to the exterior of the building without approval, which can include hanging Christmas decorations and lights from balconies and windows,” said Grant Mifsud, a partner at Archers Strata Management.

However, some tenants tend to violate these laws and overlook getting approval from their landlords.  “At Christmas when you’re having fun you need to consider your neighbours, particularly when your decorations light up nearby bedrooms and living areas,” Mifsud said.

“Residents that do not consider appropriate positioning and timing could create tension and complaints from neighbours resulting in by-law enforcement action taken against them. Decorations can also create dangerous situations if there are electrical faults or overloads, particularly in storm season.”

Royal Automobile Club of Queensland (RACQ) insurers also said that tenants should be checking their Christmas lights before installing them to ensure safety.  According to a study by the organisation, many residents use the same set of lights every year, and these lights are usually damaged in the storage.

Mifsud highlighted the importance of considering the convenience of other people in your neighbourhood. “If you are close to neighbours, you should turn off the Christmas lights at an appropriate time to avoid disturbances, and the possibility of electrical fires during the night,” he said.

When approving decorations, Mifsud said that landlords should also consider the duration for when decorations can be displayed to make sure that they are removed after the holiday season has ended.

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