Law coming for gated communities to be controlled by REB/CSC

Friday, August 18, 2017

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KINGSTON, Jamaica (JIS) – Legislation is in the works for the Real Estate Board/Commission of Strata Corporations (REB/CSC) to be given the responsibility for gated communities.

Chief Executive Officer at the REB/CSC, Sandra Watson Garrick, explained that most gated communities have shared expenses, and, therefore, experience similar problems as Strata Corporations, such as people not paying maintenance fees; disputes between parties; and general communal living issues.

“There are some strata corporations that have more than one strata corporation development on the property, and so they share expenses,” Watson Garrick noted.

She said that, currently, the Registration Strata Titles Act only speaks to each Strata Corporation, but does not address the shared expenses that more than one would have.

Therefore, Watson Garrick said that if the proprietors refuse to contribute to the overall goodwill or expenses of the development, there is nothing forcing them to do that.

She further explained that most times if the developers of the gated communities are savvy, they make purchasers sign an agreement; however, if there is no compliance they would need to take them to court. These are the issues that the legislation will address.

The CEO said that the REB/CSC is currently contracting someone to do the legal research and drafting instructions for the legislation.

In the meantime, she said that if strata owners feel aggrieved with anything to do with their corporation, they can report it to the CSC, so that the Commission can assist in resolving the dispute.

She is also encouraging people to access the purchasers' guide that the CSC has published when purchasing real estate for the first time.

“If you have any real estate queries please come to us first, and not just when you have gotten yourselves into trouble, as it is easier for us to prevent the problems than to correct them,” she said.

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