Posted on June 26, 2022 by Bill Noy

Buyer Beware!

  1. Insurance
    If there is damage from a water leak in an apartment above you, you might assume the strata’s insurance will cover you. Strata insurance policies have different water damage deductibles. It might be $5,000 but it might be $80,0000. Your own contents insurance covering your apartment usually covers you up to $5,000 for water damage. If you had a standard personal apartment contents insurance policy you would still owe $55,000 in the case of an $80,000 building insurance deductible.  A good realtor will check this.
  2. Hardwood Flooring You just bought an apartment and you want to replace the old carpet with hardwood. You might not be allowed to. Many stratas have bylaws that restrict the kind of flooring you can put in. Many stratas have bylaws that require council approval for alterations or renovations.
  3. Rental Restrictions Don’t assume that just because there are no rental restrictions, that Airbnb rentals are okay. Most stratas have bylaws which prohibit short term rentals.
  4. Pet Restrictions When buying your apartment you see owners with dogs in the lobby and you assume pets are okay. But when you move in you discover that strata has recently passed a bylaw prohibiting dogs. You are faced with selling your apartment or getting rid of your best friend. It is normal practice when a pet restriction bylaw is introduced that owners who had pets before the bylaw are exempt. But you as a new owner must obey the new bylaw. This is why you need a realtor to check the strata documents before you buy.