Okay, go outside and look for cranes or high rises going up in your neighbourhood, and then come back… I’ll wait.
Did you see quite a few? Yep, Brisbane is churning out new apartment blocks around the clock, and the governing requirement of community living is going to be the best part of a would-be Body Corporate Manager’s day.
So before you put your hand up for that representative role (I thought it would be great to give back to my community), let me vent – I mean share.
I live in an inner-city, early 70s built block of six townhouses. Great location, nice outlook, glimpses of the city, a small courtyard to enjoy the outdoors, a pretty good bunch of neighbours (though there is always one) and a surprisingly healthy Body Corporate sinking
Seemingly, as a Small Schemes Body Corporate, there has never been a need to engage the services of a Body Corporate Management company. Busy with life and a little naive in the beginning of my home-ownership, I was blindingly happy with this arrangement.
It was only after I attended two Committee Meetings and an AGM that I began to grit my teeth at the very thought of spending an hour, sometimes more, with the (then) five owners to ‘discuss matters’.
I came to dread attending those meetings; held for no other gainful purpose than to satisfy a faulty ego or to provide someone with a platform to express their need for control. I didn’t hit the bottle before going but on occasion, I did pour a glass or two when I got home!
Now, 16 years down the track, reluctantly, I have taken on the role of Secretary and Treasurer. This duo role fell into my hands at the last AGM by unanimous votes. I think it was a set-up but neighbours insist otherwise.
Here’s what I’ve learnt:
- This should never replace a hobby;
- Know that agreeing to disagree won’t always solve the problem;
- There is no financial gain. You are doing it for the love of it;
- Spare time doesn’t exist once you go down this path: there are blocked drains to be cleared; stair treads to be repaired; fencing to be re-erected; trees to be lopped; asbestos to be removed, collection of quarterly fees; emails from ‘that one neighbour’ having a whinge; and, that other neighbour asking if and when this and that will be done.
On the bright side, if I have issues or want something done quickly, I know who to go to—me, the go-to-girl. Plus, it might look good on my resume if I ever want a career change, and it might score me brownie points in the afterlife… if I don’t become the wicked witch of the west first!